I felt so disappointed this week when suddenly my friend had to leave our private retreat early. Tempted to be angry, even. She had a very good reason, I knew she had to go, but we’d planned this retreat and paid for the cabin for two nights and I wanted it to be special, after all, it was for her birthday, and since she has cancer, she may not have a lot of birthdays left and now she has to leave our retreat before we could even get comfortable . . . sigh . . .
God, what do I do with my disappointments?
There was a long season in my life when that question hovered unanswered in my heart.
During college I was disappointed to be rejected as a missionary. Three times.
Having five babies, I was disappointed that none were a boy.
A few years ago I was disappointed when Daughter 3 couldn’t come to a family summer reunion.
That’s when, after hearing my complaint, my prayer buddy said, “God has planned something better.”
I didn’t like that response, but I knew from experience she was right.
After missionary rejection #1: I spent that summer in Israel as a student. Tremendous. After rejection #2: I worked at a camp where I met my husband Jake. Life-changing. And after rejection #3: God planted us for 10 years in a beautiful community that would be our “Base Camp” during the comings and goings of our life all these years. Incredible and amazing.
Having all daughters has been so good, so much fun, has brought and brings so much satisfaction and happiness to me. And they have brought three very special ‘sons’ to our family. God could not have done anything better.
And that time Daughter 3 missed that short family reunion in the summer? They made plans to come for six weeks at Christmastime. One month before their arrival I broke my leg. It was wonderful having her here to help me and I love the memories of those little grandgirls riding with me in my wheelchair.
It is so true. God does have better things planned. Like I said before, he is determined to bless me.
And it was true again this week, when I was so disappointed that my friend had to leave.
But it turned out better.
I changed my plans, to stay longer, and she was able to go take care of her business and return. It was a great retreat.
While she was gone, I had a much-needed alone hike, where I happened upon an engraved plaque in the woods, memorializing the death of a young man. It said:
“Trust in the LORD, for the LORD, the LORD himself is the Rock eternal.” Isaiah 26:4.
There is much in this life to hurt and disappoint. Cancer is and friends die and sometimes I will never see the ‘something better’ come after certain afflictions and grief.
But I can trust God. The LORD. The LORD himself. The Rock eternal.
I trust him because I know that he has planned something eternally better.