“He knows the way I take, When He has tried me, I shall come out as Gold.” (Job 23:10)
Be Honest with Yourself and God
Written By: A No Longer Bound Resident, Austin
For men in a faith-based recovery program, the first step we’re encouraged to take when we’re disappointed in God is to be honest with Him. We’re told to open about our disappointments, and allow honest and open communication.
Even his most trusted followers, the earliest apostles – the ones that saw firsthand the miracles performed at the hand of Jesus – were disappointed and failed to fully trust Him. At times, they even failed to believe that God is all-knowing.
God knows your thoughts, heart, and ambitions. If you are disappointed, share with Him which expectations He has not met.
Did He not give you an answer in a timely manner? Did you lose a loved one unexpectedly? Did you not land your dream job? Tell Him what’s on your heart.
get back on track
Perhaps you can’t recall an exact event or circumstance that led you to feel disappointed. Maybe your faith today is a reflection of what you were (or were not) taught as a child about God. You just know that’s where you are right now.
Or, maybe you know the exact point in your life that you lost your faith, but you don’t know how to get back on track.
Similarly, if you go hiking, and you find yourself lost, you probably don’t know where exactly you made a wrong turn. All you know is that you’re off the path, and you don’t recognize your surroundings. The easiest way to regain your bearings is to turn around and walk back on your original way you came. The same is true about your faith journey.
If you have come to a point where you have only found disappointment, ask God for help and strength, and “turn back” to when you started feeling that way. Go back down the path of difficulties, and work back to the point on the trail you went off course.
Trust that God is always teaching and only wants what is best for us. One of the hardest, but most essential, pieces of faith is to trust Him more and our own “map” less.
your disappointment isn’t a punishment
It’s also important to point out that your disappointment is not a punishment from God. Christ took that punishment for you already.
God is not a punisher. He might hand out discipline, but never punishment. The difference is that discipline is done out of love for growth and learning, while the other is out of anger and worry. Your loving Father in heaven always wants you to grow and learn, even if that means you face some big battles in life. He will continue to give you the good and the bad.
In other words, God isn’t spiteful. That disappointment is usually a sign of our own shortcomings and unrealistic expectations of ourselves – not God’s.
god’s purpose through the pain
Revisiting your journey to disappointment can help you uncover the “why” behind His purpose in putting you in that situation. Usually, in the midst of a difficult season, we have a hard time understanding God’s “why”. It’s not until later when we take time to reflect that we see His hand at work.
“He knows the plans he has for you, plans to give you a future and a hope.” (Jeremiah 29:11) This means not just a future here on this Earth, but a future much more meaningful.
However, before that future can be given, you will be forced to face trials, solve problems, and rectify disappointments. With this comes God’s work of preparing us for what He has planned for us after the hardships.
“For the moment, all discipline seems painful rather than pleasant, but later it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it.” (Hebrews 12:11)
If you only look at life through a disappointed lens, you’re robbing yourself of witnessing His strength and grace. Even at your lowest and most disappointed state, He will provide you with the tools you need to endure life’s challenges. It’s up to you to find and use them.
Click here for more information on our faith-based approach to recovery.