​We have all experienced disappointment. For many of us, it seems to have been a constant companion over the years. Jesus himself experienced disappointment. In Matthew 17:17 “And Jesus answered, “O faithless and twisted generation, how long am I to be with you? How long am I to bear with you?” (ESV) 

The frustration that we feel when things don’t work out as expected can quickly become exasperation. We recently spent time with a single 36-year-old female. Like many her age, her greatest desire is to be married and have a family. Despite all the prayers, promises, and prophetic words her desire has not come to pass. Her disappointment turned to anger towards God. Her response isn’t unusual. In fact, most people respond similarly to disappointment.

I have spent time looking at root causes disappointment, and discovered that idealism, ego, lack of understanding, and lies one believes about themselves are all breeding grounds for disappointment. 

Idealism, or unrealistic expectations leave room for disappointment. Personal ego gives us a sense of false entitlement, which leads to disappointment. Lack of understanding and misinformation can provide false theologies which guarantee disappointment. When we believe lies about ourselves the devil then can get a foothold opening the door to you guessed it…more disappointment.

We live in a fallen world and we have an active enemy who is satan. He hates God, the purposes of God, and God’s purposes in you. He is continually attempting to bring about difficulty for each of us. He has been at it for several thousand years so even the physical world we live is seriously messed up. As a result, our individual lives have all been marked with illness, injuries and tragedy, abuse, rejection, abandonment, trauma of all kinds, relational struggles, disappointment and disillusionment. Putting God in a place that He has to totally insulate us from all the negativity of life is not only presumptuous, but counters His own words (John 16:33.) This perspective also ensures that disappointment is going to be a constant companion. 

I would be totally remiss if I didn’t say that we have a really good Heavenly Father who always has our best interests at heart. That is the whole, balanced picture. He always has great plans for us and gives us good gifts. We receive those gifts by doing our part surrendering to Him.

If disappointment with God has been an issue for you, please lay your reasons out before God and ask Him for His input. You may even be surprised to learn that His “failure” to answer your prayer could be one of your greatest blessings.

Read more about how idealism, ego and misinformation can lead to disappointment in our next blog!