SHATTERED DREAMS: When God doesn’t give us what we expect. Even Yahshua (Jesus) at one point felt abandoned by God. If we look close at the Word of God, we see a God who doesn’t meet our expectations… for instance: ”Blessed be Egypt my people” (ISA 19:25), He uses a pagan prophet Balaam (NUM 23-24), and as a final example, He bestows special blessings upon an abused, homeless Egyptian slave named Hagar (GEN 16). We are told the truth shall set us free…the purpose of this post is to discuss the truths of life, that you would be set free from debilitating events & instead have joy when you drink deeply of the bitter waters of life. As the Word says, man is born into trouble, yet God is at work with us according to His good purpose. My dear friend, I can honestly testify that I write this post from experience, & while the testing of my faith by trials was painful, by God’s grace those pains became gains & allowed me to see deeper realities. With these few words, I hope to help you spiritually, mentally & physically survive the storms of life.
WHEN A CRISIS HITS. Your ship sinks…you swim to get away from the suction & then tread water. You are hit by a bullet…you stop the bleeding & prevent shock. Your complete healing may take months. So it is with a severe emotional crisis; first you deal w/ survival (psychological triage), and then later you can deal w/ all the long term healing. First things first. Your heart is pounding, your eyes crying, your mind full of questions, your stomach queasy w/ no appetite, & your emotions too upset to sleep. You don’t want this test from God, you don’t want personal growth…you just want to keep from sliding from crisis to crazy. First, know this truth: terrible feelings fit terrible situations. Second, realize you have more strength hidden in you than you realize. Sure you doubt you’ll survive, but you’ll be surprised. This too shall pass—trust me, I’ve been there. Third, remind yourself that your destructive impulses will evaporate on their own. We have no control over a crisis, we can control our choices…although it is typical for our negative feelings to overwhelm our logic & problem solving abilities. But feelings are not facts. Look at your feelings…journal feelings so you can sleep…plus writing them down grounds them to reality; it is strange how that works. When we read some of our crazy crisis thoughts, we can objectively see how far off from reality they are. And journaling is cathartic—a form of letting go, which godly meditation can also perform. (Your shattered dream is a small piece of a larger story. Having lost that dream, you are now free to seek a higher better dream; but realizing that may take years of walking in faith. I’ve had it happen a no. of times.) We want to embrace grief, rather than manage it. We weep w/ those who weep—we feel their pain—just like we can weep outwardly when we ourselves weep inwardly. There’s no pressure from God for us to feel better, only from society which is impatient w/ grief. Baby steps to recovery work great. Keep your options in life open, and don’t stress yourself w/ expectations of solving everything, work on what you can & live in the present.
Perhaps we say, this pain is not my fault, so it must be Yours. How can God be good & let this happen? And let it happen He does: murder, fights, loneliness, divorce, death, rape, bills, sickness, accidents, pain and loss…He doesn’t glue the dropped broken egg shell together, & He doesn’t fix the bent side panel. He can seem indifferent, uncaring & distant. Hey, you can vent your questions to Him…“What are You doing w/ all Your power?” Well God could have arranged our lives differently, He didn’t!! Our boss at work is still a tyrant, & our teacher still a bore. Guess what? God Almighty can’t be depended on to eliminate pain from your life! Pain reveals lots of unpleasant realities, & our distorted ideas about ourselves, others, the world, etc. It is often a reality check. Yet, when our false mundane pillars (castles built on sand) fall, we can end up w/ pillars of faith that bring incredible joy. Real joy comes from what is real. The noise of our suffering is a Geiger counter to an important discovery. When we pass thru the test, we learn to forget ourselves & find God. Christ before the cross told his disciples “soon you will have power”. The Holy Spirit would be with them. (But he wasn’t telling them, “soon you will have the good life & no pain!”) Amazingly, our pain helps us find God.
I THOUGHT MY LIFE WOULD BE DIFFERENT. God’s men of faith did not get what they expected from Him (HEB 11:39). Often very little in life matches our expectations. This is especially true of nominal Christians, who think that if they believe in God & go to church, that they are making a deal w/ the Almighty to bring them presents & give them what they want for happiness. He is thought to be merely the means to a good time. Unfortunately, very few “ministers of God” prepare people for the realities of tragedy, pain & suffering in life. (Note, God too is shown in the OT to be disappointed & suffer, such as suffering rejection, & in the NT He suffers the loss of His son to a cruel death.) Disappointed unprepared people are getting stuck in a state of paralysis, or worse giving up & just ending it all. “What’s the use? I can’t go on.” Yet pain can be turned to gain. Indeed for major changes for the good to take place, it takes the pressure of a crisis to produce the force for positive change. This is not only recognized by the Word of God, but CIA mind control programmers. The death of the old life is a seed for the new. As we want to choose life rather than death, we want God’s help to embrace change, for change is the universal norm. May God grant you my friend the resources & strength to master your new life.