God “disappoints”, someone, somewhere every day. Amidst crushing crisis, upon the cliffs of death and darkness, we fan the embers of faith to believe God will show up and rescue us from the very thing we dread. We pray, plead and willingly beg but our tears only water grass at the gravesite. What will we do when God is silent, when He closes the door, when our dreams are swept away…is God pushing the broom?
Those who don’t know the Lord test Him in their place of despair, “If you are God, show yourself to me and others here in this hospital room and we will believe!” Although the Lord rebuked the devil, “Do not put the Lord your God to the test” He doesn’t condemn us in our desperation. But neither our desperation, nor nights of anguish and millions of tears can assure that God will miraculously move. Prayer cannot change the will of God, but can supernaturally open to us the revelation of what His will is and align us with His presence and sovereignty.
Prayer doesn’t make God answer, it aligns us with the answer He already has.
If you have never entered into a living faith, never truly repented and surrendered to the Lord, but rise up in your ‘911’ and call upon Him, what will you do when you are disappointed? Most people will walk further away from any semblance of faith when the ‘God option’ fails in their time of need. What will YOU do? Or, brother and sister in the Lord, what happens when we are walking right before God and He leads us onto a path of brokenness, pain and deep disappointment, what will we do when our prayers seem answered with worse calamity?
The juncture of devastating disappointment is a critical one and yet can be the most life giving crossroad of our faith. This is painfully true. Crushing disappointment is not a time to test God, it is the time He tests us. How can we survive this? How can our faith thrive through this?
Do not judge God by your circumstances, do not give up in prayer, call upon Him to enter into your despair and compel yourself to do this:
Abandon every “if-then” condition set upon God.
Make a commitment, even with a speck of faith, to prayerfully read the Bible every day. “The Lord is close to the broken hearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit” emotional pain separates us from worldly clamor and avails to us a door for the Lord to minister and speak. Commit to that daily appointment with the Lord, He already awaits.
Did we seek God only to receive miracle or do we truly desire supernatural life?
Faith is the engine that moves and aligns us to God, positioning us to hear from Him, leading us into His presence. “Faith comes from hearing, and hearing from the Word of God.” Meditate upon the Psalms, enter into the disappointments, the deep losses, the grief of God’s people and begin to believe that their found healing and victory is also for you.
Press on past the voice of the enemy, Satan, as onslaughts come to fuel grief and doubts, “What good did praying bring?” “What kind of God is this anyway who lets your loved one suffer and die?” “What was God doing while your husband cheated? While your home, your plans, your dreams, crumbled to the ground?” Your faith is the target of the devil’s biggest lies: “God was doing nothing all this time! He doesn’t love you! His word is not true!” Resolve to reject every lie and accusation against the Lord, especially those hidden within your own heart.
Holy Scripture, originally written without punctuation, renders two understandings of Isaiah 59:19 as scholars vary a tiny comma…
“When the enemy comes in like a flood, the Spirit of the Lord will lift up a standard against him.”
“When the enemy comes in, like a flood the Spirit of the Lord will lift up a standard against him.”
I pray that the Holy Spirit comes in, like a flood of Living Water, overwhelming the wiles of the enemy and refreshing us with the Word of God.
It is natural to hope upon the miracles of healing, the abundance created by five loaves and two fish, the raising of the dead and sight to the blind, but these are temporal, not eternal ‘measuring points’ of God’s faithfulness. Jesus established His divinity through such miracles but that He did not come to perform miracles. He came to save us from our sins. Far fewer people are crying out for and rejoicing in this miracle although this is the one He came to fulfill, the one that will NEVER disappoint, the one that leads to eternal life. From that unbroken and eternal promise, He calls us to follow Him on a narrow path carrying our cross.
When the dust settles might we ask, are we in right relationship to God through repentance? Are we committed to following Him on a path of self-denial? Have we invested our heart to a popular ‘easy-believism’ or are we given to the whole counsel of God?
“It needs to be said that a world of confusion results from trying to believe without obeying! A mere passive surrender may be no surrender at all. Any real submission to the will of God must include willingness to take orders from Him from that time on.” A.W. Tozer
Does God heal? Does He miraculously provide and restore? The Lord is well able and does supernaturally intervene into the crisis of man. However, His purpose is higher than prolonging life and fulfilling hopes; it is for an abundant and eternal life led by God. A God led life. May our spiritual eyes open as we consider, from Genesis to Revelation, the disappointments, losses, betrayals and calamities of the saints AND the faithfulness of God to move upon them. The Lord wastes not one tear nor one moment of suffering for those given to Him. In His hand ‘He works it all together for good, for those who love Him and are called according to His purpose’.
I pray for those now at critical junctures of faith, may they decide to take all doubts, anger and grief to God and compel themselves to search His Word.
“Then you will know that I am the Lord; those who hope in me will not be disappointed.” Isaiah 49:23