Disappointment is Not the Boss of You

When your heart gets slammed with sorrow, it can feel so overwhelming, can’t it? Loss, grief, disappointment — all of that can feel so much bigger than us.

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If we aren’t paying attention, our disappointment can begin to rule us—it can become our master if we don’t get mastery over it.

I willingly give authority to what or whom I choose to serve.
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I want my sorrow and difficulty to serve me — to strengthen and grow me, don’t you?

We want our disappointment to serve us, not the other way around.

What or whom we choose to serve, we willingly give authority over us.

So, when life disappoints you, who or what do you serve? Do you serve your sorrow or disappointment? Do you pay it homage by bowing to it and letting it control you? You don’t have to. You can be like Anna instead…

When I let my disappointments be the boss of me, I miss out on the gifts that are right before me.
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Anna was a prophetess who lived at the Temple in Jerusalem. Her short biography in the New Testament is more like a Facebook post than a biography!  It’s only 3 verses; Luke 2:36-38.  She was married for seven years but, then she was “a widow until she was 84”. That’s a long time, isn’t it?

When the Bible points out that she was 84, it could either mean Anna was 84 when she encountered Jesus, or that she had been widowed 84 years before she met Him. Either way, Anna was no spring chicken!  She was old enough to be a Grandma, or a Great Grandmother! But, she wasn’t. Given what we have learned about her in God’s word, Anna never had children.

If you’ve longed for a child, you know how Anna must have grieved. She had to have lived with deep disappointment. Instead of keeping house, raising kids and caring for a husband, she lived her adult life at the Temple.

When dealing with disappointment, I can choose to serve God instead of serving my sorrow.
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So, on the day that Mary and Joseph showed up at the Temple with their eight day old baby boy, (Luke 2: 21-24) Anna made a beeline to the little family, thanked God, and announced to the whole crowd that this was the One, the O-N-E… the long-awaited Christ.

Seeing a sweet baby boy could have been a stab in the heart to Anna, who never had a child of her own. Her disappointment because of her own loss could have clouded her vision so she couldn’t see the Christ child clearly.

When we let disappointment be the boss of us, it can keep us from the gifts that are right before us.

But, disappointment was not the boss of Anna; God was the ruler of her heart.

Anna wasn’t stuck in her own loss; rather she moved beyond it and filled her life with love and service to God.

Anna didn’t run from that baby that day; she ran to him.

She didn’t pull away from a nursing mom that day; she was drawn to her.

Because of Anna’s love for God and contentment for how He had allowed her life to turn out, she approached the Baby Jesus and was forever blessed.

A bitter, cynical attitude doesn’t serve me and won’t bring me joy.
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Anna gives us a great example of how to live with disappointment.  She didn’t serve her sorrow — she served God.  She didn’t get bitter toward God like Naomi did when she lost her husband. She didn’t become cynical like Sarah when God didn’t open her womb in the way and time she wanted.

Instead, Anna dedicated her whole life to the God who allowed her widowhood and childlessness.

How do you deal with disappointment? Do you become bitter? Do you choose to become cynical?

A cynical attitude and bitter disposition do not serve us and they don’t bring us joy.

When we channel our loss into serving God rather than serving our own sorrow, we fill that loss with something even more satisfying—an encounter with the Living God.

No matter what loss you’ve experienced, sister, disappointment is not the boss of you.  Your loss, sorrow or disappointment do not have to color your days, dictate your moods, or determine your future.

When we channel our loss into serving God instead of our sorrow, we encounter the Living God.
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Make this day the day you decide to no longer serve your disappointment.  Instead of focusing on your loss and becoming bitter, fill your loss with service to God.

Question: How do you handle disappointment? Share your tips below.

 

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