Mat 1:19-20 “… he had in mind to divorce her quietly. But after he had considered this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream…”
Some time ago the daughter of some friends of ours – a young woman we love and consider precious, lost her first baby to miscarriage. This was cause for great disappointment for all. We felt their pain and prayed for their encouragement as this couple tried again for a child.
Disappointments are a part of life that happen because of the evil, pain, and hurt that Satan has sown into this earth. When we face them, it is so critical that we keep from making a harmful mistake that unfortunately take far too many down a road of deception.
The mistake that needs to be guarded against at a time of disappointment is to think that God let you down or didn’t answer your prayer.
God does hear and answer our prayers if they are according to His Will. 1 John 5:14-15 says, “This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. And if we know that He hears us–whatever we ask–we know that we have what we asked of Him.” This is why it’s so important to spend time in the Word of God and come to know His will.
Some people go through life and treat God as a ‘genie.’ “God do this and God do that.” Other than asking for something whenever they are in trouble, they don’t spend much time with God. Our prayers our heard when they are according to His will. Our prayers are answered when they are lifted in faith – a belief and trust in what the Lord said is true!” The majority of prayers are lifted not in faith but in at best, hope – and usually in worry. God says we please Him through faith!
God does want us to let Him know of every need. That does not offend him. Phil 4:6 reveals this powerful benefit to us! “Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.” It’s just that when we don’t take the time to worship Him and meditate on His Word, we don’t give the Holy Spirit the opportunity to illuminate His love, His kindness and mercy, and the promises of His Word – all things that build our faith. Without a true heart relationship with God, our motivation is often off. God’s love is selfless. An intimate relationship with Him transforms us from selfish to selfless. That is when our character matures, our motivation becomes pure, and our knowledge and confidence in His will become anchored in real faith.
Having said all this, when disappointment comes to our life, the first thing to make sure you don’t do is let your mind go down the path of “God didn’t answer my prayer.” If you have a relationship with Him and you asked in faith then you need to trust God. As the old saying goes, “it’s not over till it’s over.” God has got a plan to turn every evil of Satan to the benefit of His children when we hold on in faith.
In today’s Fresh Manna verse, we read the story of Joseph and Mary. Joseph was greatly disappointed – probably crushed by Mary’s revelation that she was pregnant by the Holy Spirit. He just couldn’t wrap his understanding around that. He couldn’t believe her. In his mind he had figured out a plan. He would quietly divorce her. That was the best his mind could come up with. But he didn’t blame God or shut God out in anger. He kept his heart open and God gave Him a better plan – His will! We read, Mat 1:19-20 “Because Joseph her husband was a righteous man and did not want to expose her to public disgrace, he had in mind to divorce her quietly. But after he had considered this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, “Joseph son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit.”
God took Joseph past his disappointment into His will for their lives. Joseph would not have heard this if he had let his disappointment become anger at God. He kept his heart right toward God and God turned his disappointment into blessing. God will do that for us if we stay close to Him, keep our situations before Him, and in faith trust Him. As Proverbs 3:5-6 says, “Trust in the LORD with all your heart, And lean not on your own understanding; In all your ways acknowledge Him, And He shall direct your paths.”
In His Love,
Pastor Tim Burt
Published by Pastor Tim Burt
Copyright© 2008 Tim Burt, All rights reserved