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  • Writer's pictureBarbara Byers

The Way Through Disappointment

Some years ago, I was asking the Lord about some very gifted people I knew who seemingly had dropped out of church life. They had once walked with the Lord and were active leaders in church fellowships. In response I was given a picture of someone running well on a trail and suddenly an unexpected wall popped up in front of them and stopped them in their tracks. They were surprised at first, then disheartened, then justified their decision not to move forward because the pain of disappointment was so great.

Paul asked the question: “You were running well; who hindered you from the truth?” (Gal. 5:7) As Christians we are on a highway of holiness and Scripture indicates that there will be many difficult places (Jn. 16:33; Jas. 1:2-4). But Scripture also promises that God will make a way over, under, around, or through. “The Lord illumines my darkness. For by you I can run through a troop; by my God I can leap over a wall” (2 Sam. 22:29-30). We may at first be stunned by the sudden wall—whether a friend’s betrayal, an illness, financial loss, a church hurt—and the pain can be very deep indeed. But disillusionment does not have to creep in and bring bitterness and self-pity if we continue to know and believe the Father’s goodness toward us.

The wall is never intended as a place where our forward movement is stopped; it is a pause, a testing place to grieve, regroup, reconsider, and trust the Lord for a way on. He will meet us right at the wall, the place of trial, with his love, encouragement, and revelation. The barrier can become a doorway to greater maturity and wisdom. We can let it refine us as we ask the Lord for the strengthening fortitude to keep trusting him as we move forward.

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