Listen to this devotional:
Listen while you read: "Praise ye the Triune God"1 (Lyrics)
Over the years, I have visited many people who have that look on their faces: disappointment. It's a blank, hurt look, with no interest in any future possibilities — it's all over for them. It is so sad to see. Does the Bible speak to such feelings? Yes, Psalm 22 has a lot to say about that way of life with verses that speak to the dust in life, cleaning the soul.
There is much in life that we find disappointing, having expected much more. As we age, there seems to be much in life that hinders us: muscles becoming weaker and thoughts getting emptier, often even unable to remember a thought from earlier. It seems like life is all dust, blocking the true light. Psalm 22 speaks of this and where to look for help. It begins, "My God, my God, why have you forsaken me? Why are you so far from saving me, so far from the words of my groaning?" (NIV) Verse 6 even says, "But I am a worm, not a man, scorned by men and despised by the people." This is coming from a heart that really hurts.
When I am visiting a family in serious trouble when everything is terribly disappointing, I share Psalm 22:11 with them: "Do not be far from me, for trouble is near and there is no one to help." This verse puts our needs front and centre as we get closer to our Lord. Then, we ask the Lord for His help in relieving the pain of disappointment and neglect, and He always does!
I can remember one Sunday when the weather completely blotted out all hope of making it to church and offering the sermon that I had spent time all week preparing. How did God handle that? Rather than thinking only of myself, He gave me a prayer for the safety of all as we suffered without heat or water. The only light that we have at such times when we are in trouble is God's promise to be with us. We are not alone. Psalm 22:19 puts it: "But you, O Lord, be not far off; O my Strength, come quickly to help me." When we ask God, He does come to help us.
Sure, we go through hard times that disappoint us, but nothing in life proves to be disappointing when Jesus takes our lives and our experiences and strengthens our faith. Wonderful things happen. He is near us. Nothing is disappointing with Jesus involved. We just give every day to Him and bask in His loving presence helping us.
Prayer: Through the years, You have blessed us, O Lord. Thank You! You make everything that seems disappointing into something full of Your grace, helping us to make huge changes in our lives and communities. Thank You for Your presence with all of us. In Jesus' name, we pray. Amen.