My son should be graduating from high school this week. Along with his friends and classmates, our firstborn should be donning a cap and gown so he can cross a stage, move his tassel, and receive his high school diploma. The fact that a global pandemic has taken that from him and from our family? To say it’s a disappointment would be an understatement.
And it seems that we are all living through a time of one let down after another, doesn’t it? Trial after trial, unanswered hope after unmet expectation. Honestly, it can all be a bit much.
Of course, I know that so many of us have had great disappointments in our lives. These sadnesses and heartaches aren’t kept to one timetable or centered around one major event. The heartaches we face are as varied and as numerable as our souls and then some.
And our loving Father sees them all.
Scripture Verses to Pray When You’re Disappointed
There’s no one way to process hurting and it never quite happens in a straight line. And we may need different types of help depending on where we are in that process.
But what I found encouraging when I dove into my Bible to research this post is that there seems to be a Word for each of us, no matter what it is we need.
When You Desire Empathy…
Don’t ever feel like God doesn’t know what disappointment feels like, sister. Don’t ever think that your cares are too much for Him. He is the God of Job and Jeremiah and David and Mary and Martha, too. He’s heard our cries throughout time. And He hears yours now.
// “The Lord is close to the brokenhearted, saves those whose spirit is crushed.” -Psalm 34:19
// “Yet when I looked for good, evil came; when I expected light, darkness came.” -Job 30:26
// “Why is my pain continuous, my wound incurable, refusing to be healed?” -Jeremiah 15:18
When You Need Encouragement…
You’ve been disappointed. That thing you were looking forward to isn’t going to happen. The results you prayed for didn’t come to be. A promise wasn’t fulfilled. You can grieve what you had envisioned and recognize what happened, but it still hurts!
Where are the words that can encourage you in the moment? How can we begin to see God’s hand in our individual circumstances? Let His words bring you the solace and strength that you need.
// “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, nor are your ways my ways…For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, my thoughts higher than your thoughts.” -Isaiah 55:8-9
// “Do you not know? Have you not heard? The LORD is God from of old, creator of the ends of the earth. He does not faint or grow weary, and his knowledge is beyond scrutiny. He gives power to the faint, abundant strength to the weak. Though young men faint and grow weary, and youths stagger and fall, they that hope in the LORD will renew their strength, they will soar on eagles’ wings; they will run and not grow weary, walk and not grow faint.” -Isaiah 40:28-31
// “Trust in the LORD with all your heart, on your own intelligence do not rely; in all your ways be mindful of him, and he will make straight your paths.” -Proverbs 3:5-6
// “‘My grace is sufficient for you, for power is made perfect in weakness.’ I will rather boast most gladly of my weaknesses, in order that hte power of Christ may dwell with me.” -2 Corinthians 12:9
When You Want to Act…
How many times have we thought, “But what can I do?! I just want to do something!”
It’s true that most of the things we are most disappointed in are things that are out of our control. There’s not always a lot we can do to change things. But maybe we don’t concentrate on changing things in times of disappointment. Maybe we consider changing ourselves. Or, rather, allowing God to change us.
// “Cast your cares upon the Lord who will give you support.” -Psalm 55:23
// “I believe I shall see the LORD’s goodness in the land of the living. Wait for the LORD, take courage; be stouthearted, wait for the LORD!” -Psalm 27:13-14
// “Have no anxiety at all, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, make your requests known to God. Then the peace of God that surpasses all understanding will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.” -Philippians 4:6-7
// “So humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time. Cast all your worries upon him because he cares for you.” -1 Peter 5:6-7
When You Find Hope Again…
“We are an Easter people,” says Pope St. John Paul II. And what does that mean? Well, to me, it means that we are a people who are focused on the hope of the Resurrection, even amidst the pain of the Crucifixion.
There can be no Easter Sunday without Good Friday. And the fulfillment of our hopes and dreams is made all the brighter by the sufferings we have endured.
// “For I know well the plans I have in mind for you…plans for your welfare and not for woe, so as to give you a future of hope.” -Jeremiah 29:11
// “We know that all things work for good for those who love God, who are called according to his purpose.” -Romans 8:28
// “In every circumstance and in all things I have learned the secret of being well fed and of going hungry, of living in abundance and of being in need. I have the strength for everything through him who empowers me.” -Philippians 4:12-13
Empathy, Encouragement, Action, and Hope
Sisters, these are some unprecedented times we are living through. And where uncertainty and fear walk, disappointment seems sure to follow. But, as we do in so many other circumstances, let’s take this opportunity to come to the Word for reassurance.
…all shall be well, and all shall be well, and all manner of things shall be well.
-Julian of Norwich
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