5 Things the Gospel Has to Say About Disappointment

Disappointment is almost a daily part of life. You know the feeling – at its core level, disappointment is about unmet expectations. You have in your mind the way a relationship, a situation, an interview, a meeting, a conversation – pretty much anything – should go, and then it goes differently from that. You walk out of that situation feeling wronged somehow. Slighted.

There’s a couple of ways it can go from there. One way is very bad. You can dwell on the way things should have been, and in so doing, feed the beast of bitterness inside you. Or, you can actively think on the truth of the gospel. You can apply what you know to be true about Jesus to that situation of unmet expectations.

So what might the gospel have to say about disappointment? Here are a few suggestions:

1. Your worth is determined not by the outcome of this situation. It’s determined and set by the cross of Jesus Christ. So regardless of how this turns out, you are secure in Him.

2. Because you feel so disappointed right now, you can ask the Holy Spirit what that disappointment reveals about your heart. Perhaps you have placed this hope, this relationships, or this job in higher esteem than you ought. Repent, and return to your first love that still passionately loves you.

3. Praise God! Evidently, there is some pitfall in your future that you are not aware of. God, who is working for your good, sees and knows all things. Thank God that He is protecting you from yourself, for surely you would fall into some kind of sin or trouble had things worked out the way you thought they should. Thank God He’s wiser than you are.

4. You do not have to be ruled by your emotions in this moment. You can choose joy in Christ. But learning how to do that only happens during seasons of disappointment. You are free, in Christ, to be okay in Christ.

5. Jesus loves you. He really, really does.

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4 Comments

  • Karen McGee says:

    thank you for writing this, michael.

  • Nanette says:

    I echo Karen . . . Thanks for writing this and for giving us the gospel perspective on disappointment.

  • Kim says:

    I just finished reading the chapter on wisdom in “Wednesdays Were Pretty Normal” and this goes right along with that. The God who loves us and has the best in store for us, sovereignly controls the events of our lives. Even the disappointments. Thank you for the reminder!

  • Cara says:

    I don’t like #2 because it is convicting, but I do like #2 because it is so true.

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