Disappointment with God Part 2

“So we fix our eyes not on what is seen but on what is unseen.  For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal” (2 Corinthians 4:18).

As you live and move and have your being in Christ, at some point, difficult days will come. We live in a fallen world, and suffering is simply a part of it. Jesus said, “In this world you will have trouble,” (John 16:33). It’s a sure thing.

When we experience shattered dreams, broken relationships, tragic losses, or unfulfilled longings, it can be difficult to feel God’s presence, to see His hand, and to hear His voice. [tweetherder]Glory moments cease when we close our eyes in pain and tune God out in anger.[/tweetherder] That doesn’t mean that God is not there. It only means that the sadness in our own hearts has drawn the shades and locked the doors. We question whether or not we even want to live in union with God if this is where the path leads. We tend to wriggle out of His arms like an angry child or slip out of His embrace like a disgruntled lover, all the while hoping He will pull us back in and tell us that we have simply misunderstood.

Men and women throughout the Bible voiced their disappointment when God didn’t act as they had hoped. David cried out, “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?” (Psalm 22:1). Habakkuk cried out: “How long, O Lord, must I call for help, but you do not listen?” (Habakkuk1:2). Even Jesus, when he hung on that cruel Roman cross, did not call out the comforting words of the Twenty-third Psalm, but the agonizing words of the Twenty-second.

Philip Yancey, in his book, Disappointment with God says, “The words of the prophets sound like the words of a lovers’ quarrel drifting through thin apartment walls.” I’ve read the words. I’ve heard the words. I’ve said the words.

And while we complain of God’s silence or seeming indifference during difficult times, He is always there working behind the scenes in ways we may never understand.

In the Bible, we catch glimpses of God’s veiled activity among men. Daniel prayed for three weeks while God appeared to be silent. Finally an angel showed up and explained his delay—a demon, the prince of the Persian kingdom, fought with him and held him back for twenty-one days (Daniel 10).

In another incident, the prophet Elisha and his servant were surrounded by Aramean enemies. Elisha’s servant was terrified and thought they were surely doomed. Elisha very calmly reassured him: “Don’t be afraid. Those who are with us are more than those who are with them.” Then he asked God to lift the curtain of the spiritual realm and reveal the truth of the situation. “Then the LORD opened the servant’s eyes, and he looked and saw the hills full of horses and chariots of fire all around Elisha” (2 Kings 6:15-18).  Talk about sudden glory!

Three months after the loss of my second child, I broke my silence with God and prayed a prayer similar to Elisha’s. “Oh God, please open my eyes to see Your glory in this situation. If I could just see her. Please Lord, give me a glimpse.

And then God pulled back the curtain in my mind and I envisioned this child, healthy and whole and playing at the feet of Jesus. She was surrounded by God’s glory face-to-face. Radiant resplendent glory. Not an ounce of glory ache to be seen.

Glory moments do not require a physical vision, but a spiritual revelation—an understanding of a greater reality than this physical world in which we live. The unseen world is very real, and while we may not see God’s activity with our physical eyes, we can be assured of His provision and protection in ways we may never understand. When He said, “I will never leave you or forsake you,” He meant it.

“So we fix our eyes not on what is seen (our circumstances), but on what is unseen (God’s presence). For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal” (2 Corinthians 4:18, parentheses mine). One day, it will all make sense. Until then…we trust. And when we have the faith to keep our eyes open during the dark times, God will scatter moments of sudden glory like stars in the inky sky. We hold fast and continue practicing Acts 17:28—even when we aren’t sure where that may lead.

Let’s Pray

Lord, sometimes I just don’t get it, but that’s OK. I don’t have to “get it.” I don’t have to understand. But I trust You. I know Your ways are higher than my ways. So I unfurl my fingers and release the tight grip I have on my circumstances. I give them to You. I am looking for moments of sudden glory…Your presence…in the confusing circumstances of my life. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

 Now It’s Your Turn

Ready for a little finger exercises today? Here’s what I want you to do:

  1. Ball up your fist and think of a worry or concern you’re holding onto.
  2. Give it a name.
  3. Unfurl your fingers, open up your hand, and lift it to God saying, “I give this to You.
  4. Repeat. Repeat. Repeat.

I think that’s an exercise we ought to do often.

Did you do it? Leave a comment and me know how many times you repeated this finger exercise today?

Want More? 

Sometimes it is hard to let go, isn’t it. Truly, it is a matter of trust. Gwen, Mary and I have written a wonderful book titled Trusting God. It’s is a 12-week devotion book dedicated to that one single topic. If you enjoy our devotions, you will LOVE our book, Trusting God. And we even have free videos on-line to go with each of the 12 weeks. So gather some girlfriends and learn about how to trust God together.

14 Responses to Disappointment with God Part 2

  1. Jennifer January 10, 2013 at 2:35 pm #

    I hardly ever comment on anything, but I really feel led to share this today. I have lost three children in the past year. My husband and I have been trying to have a child for two years. After our first miscarriage, I was mad at God. I told him that I would get back to him when I could. I was so angry and hurt that I didn’t know how to talk to him. In three months (just like this blog), I told God that I needed to know she was ok. I knew that she was in Heaven, but when you go through a loss like this, it shakes your world. I really believe that God gave me a vision of her. I’ve never told anyone this, not even my husband, because I thought I was crazy! It was such a blessing to open this today and read it. My husband and I are fixing to take the next step in fertility treatments and it really helps to know that God has done this for others, too. Thank you so much for sharing this today.

  2. Lucy January 10, 2013 at 4:43 pm #

    I already did this once…I let go of an issue in my life which is souring my relationship with God and my family. Thanks for this devotion, Sharon!

  3. Esther January 10, 2013 at 5:28 pm #

    I enjoyed this devotional..brought me to tears to be reminded how our Lord has all things all my circumstances under his control. Writing down what is weighting down my heart was a great exercise that I plan to repeat throughout the day. Thank you. God Bless.

  4. valerie January 10, 2013 at 9:14 pm #

    God speaks to me everyday through the devotional from GIG. You are all awesome women of God, thank you. I have given the Lord quite a few handfulls of circumstances that are bringing me down!! Life has thrown me some curve balls & have been stressing..I have had a dibilitating flu/cold for over2wks. I need to find a job asap & this has delayed my progress. I am self supporting & no nest egg to speak of..I am on unemployment due run out in 2.5 wks. I am at an age where I have been feeling age discdimination, I have not faced that before.. I have been praying for work or @ least an extension of bendfits

  5. valerie January 10, 2013 at 9:24 pm #

    Contd. from above…benefits but don’t know the Lord’s plan. I have been praying for a vision for whatever job the Lord is preparing but have not received any clue!
    It is so awesome that the Lord gave you the beautiful vision of your daughter, He is so faithful.
    Please pray for me..I have been wanting to soar like an eagle but can’t seem to get off the ground!! Thank you & blessings to you all…:)

  6. Diane January 10, 2013 at 10:40 pm #

    I did this exercise FIVE times today alone! They are heavy concerns, and I know my Heavenly Father knows that, but it is always good to be reminded that HE has it covered…thanks for sharing your heart.

  7. Jehrica January 10, 2013 at 10:50 pm #

    I have to keep giving my stuggles to God.. a wise lady at my Church always reminds us that we are living sacrifices for Christ but our tendency is to crawl off of His altar and do our own thing.. we must trust and submit to His plan and lay it all at the altar and at HIS PRECIOUS FEET!

  8. Carolyn January 10, 2013 at 11:58 pm #

    I released to God my daughters unholy lifestyle, actually 2 daughters and a granddaughter. I released my husband and stubbornness and rebellion. I released my job prospect into the Lords hands….feeling freedom now!!! Thanks, Sharon!!!

  9. Vanessa January 11, 2013 at 3:04 am #

    I’ve done this exercise several times today, I released my husbands case and my finances to God who I know is in full control. I’m new to this site and I’m loving it, always looking forward to my daily emails.
    Thanks Sharon

  10. Rhoda January 11, 2013 at 10:14 am #

    This is my first time I am getting involve in responding to articles on the web and I just feel like releasing the troubles in my mariage and also ask God give me the grace to step away from a medioca lifestyle. I believe now is the time to allow God to use me for His glory.

  11. Andrea January 14, 2013 at 12:09 pm #

    Knowing God see me, assures me that I’m NEVER alone because He’s with me every step of the way.
    He’s been with me through a year of unemployment in 2012 and even now at present, He still is.
    I want to thank you GIG for this devotion, as it has helped me to realize even more that I’m not alone on my unemployment journey. I trust God to direct me to and lead me thru a door of lastng employment and when He does, I’ll be even more better and grateful as I do my job. In the meantime I hope, trust and wait in faith.
    I encourage all readers to be confidantly assured that God-Will-Take-Care-Of-You.
    He KNOWS! He knew I would’ve told Him just on Saturday that I’m tired of the disappointment of not findng a job as yet BUT He knew today that He’d show me a sign for good thru this devotion 🙂 My hope is renewed and I join in the hymn that says:
    Be not dismayed what ere betides, God WILL take care of you;
    Beneath His wings of love abide, God WILL take care of you
    CHORUS:
    God Will take care of you,
    Through every day,
    O’re all the way,
    He will take care of you,
    God WILL take care of you.
    (Google this hymn and trust God, for He IS…)
    I encourage you readers to hold on to this truth until you come into your breakthrough. Remember that He faithfully and lovingly cared for the Israelites for 40 Years in a wilderness (A place of driness and barrenness) and . If He did it For them, He’ll do it for us also for He’s The GOD that CANNOT change.
    Have faith, HAVE FAITH, in GOD who SEES, HEARS and DO.
    Readers, we are NEVER alone for He’s promised never to leave us nor forsake us, AND that’s enough for me.
    Father God, as You’ve done before so now do for each of us who are trusting You to come thru on our behalf, victoriously, thruimphantly, exceedingly and miraculously (Ephesians 3:20) Teach us how to wait and rest, trusting you all the while. In Jesus Name I pray, Amen and AMEN!

  12. Grace January 14, 2013 at 1:07 pm #

    I thank God for this devotional and all of the others. I lived life years ago thinking my life was curse, feeling like Hagar but in different circumstances. Felt like a reject/castaway; but God continues to show His love towards me and I am Blessed!

  13. Lisa January 14, 2013 at 10:34 pm #

    Known ,loved, valued !

  14. BOITUMELO PHETLHO May 22, 2013 at 1:10 pm #

    I did the exercise over and over and trust God to help me with my dizzyness and all my worries.

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