Handling Life’s Disappointments

SERIES – Getting on Top of Your Finances

Romans 15:22-26 GNV

22   And so I have been prevented many times from coming to you.

23   But now that I have finished my work in these regions and since I have been wanting for so many years to come to see you,

24   I hope to do so now. I would like to see you on my way to Spain, and be helped by you to go there, after I have enjoyed visiting you for a while.

25   Right now, however, I am going to Jerusalem in the service of God’s people there.

26   For the churches in Macedonia and Achaia have freely decided to give an offering to help the poor among God’s people in Jerusalem.

Every person’s life is a diary in which you planned to write one story, but circumstances forced you to write another.

A disappointment is when my expectations don’t match life’s realities.

  • People can disappoint us.

Job 6:15-20 NLT15 My brothers, you have proved as unreliable as a seasonal brook that overflows its banks in the spring 16 when it is swollen with ice and melting snow. 17 But when the hot weather arrives, the water disappears. The brook vanishes in the heat. 18 The caravans turn aside to be refreshed, but there is nothing to drink, so they die. 19 The caravans from Tema search for this water; the travelers from Sheba hope to find it. 20 They count on it but are disappointed. When they arrive, their hopes are dashed.

  • Plans can disappoint us.

Acts 1-15 – Jerusalem Theology

Acts 16-28 – Rome and Politics

Acts 21:17, 27-36 GNV17 When we arrived, the brothers and sisters in Jerusalem welcomed us warmly. 27 The seven days were almost ended when some Jews from the province of Asia saw Paul in the Temple and roused a mob against him. They grabbed him, 28 yelling, “Men of Israel, help us! This is the man who preaches against our people everywhere and tells everybody to disobey the Jewish laws. He speaks against the Temple—and even defiles this holy place by bringing in Gentiles.” 29 (For earlier that day they had seen him in the city with Trophimus, a Gentile from Ephesus, and they assumed Paul had taken him into the Temple.) 30 The whole city was rocked by these accusations, and a great riot followed. Paul was grabbed and dragged out of the Temple, and immediately the gates were closed behind him. 31 As they were trying to kill him, word reached the commander of the Roman regiment that all Jerusalem was in an uproar. 32 He immediately called out his soldiers and officers and ran down among the crowd. When the mob saw the commander and the troops coming, they stopped beating Paul. 33 Then the commander arrested him and ordered him bound with two chains. He asked the crowd who he was and what he had done. 34 Some shouted one thing and some another. Since he couldn’t find out the truth in all the uproar and confusion, he ordered that Paul be taken to the fortress. 35 As Paul reached the stairs, the mob grew so violent the soldiers had to lift him to their shoulders to protect him. 36 And the crowd followed behind, shouting, “Kill him, kill him!”

Acts 22:24-25 GNV24 The commander brought Paul inside and ordered him lashed with whips to make him confess his crime. He wanted to find out why the crowd had become so furious. 25 When they tied Paul down to lash him, Paul said to the officer standing there, “Is it legal for you to whip a Roman citizen who hasn’t even been tried?”

Acts 25:10-12 GNV10 But Paul replied, “No! This is the official Roman court, so I ought to be tried right here. You know very well I am not guilty of harming the Jews. 11 If I have done something worthy of death, I don’t refuse to die. But if I am innocent, no one has a right to turn me over to these men to kill me. I appeal to Caesar!” 12 Festus conferred with his advisers and then replied, “Very well! You have appealed to Caesar, and to Caesar you will go!”

How do you deal with disappointments?

  1. Don’t be surprised when disappointment comes.

Romans 15:24 KJV – Whensoever I take my journey into Spain, I will come to you: for I trust to see you in my journey, and to be brought on my way thitherward by you, if first I be somewhat filled with your company.

  1. Nothing worthwhile in life is ever achieved without patience, labor and disappointment.

When God wants to drill a man,

And thrill a man,

And skill a man

When God wants to mold a man

To play the noblest part;

When He yearns with all His heart

To create so great and bold a man

That all the world shall be amazed,

Watch His methods, watch His ways!

How He ruthlessly perfects

Whom He royally elects!

How He hammers him and hurts him,

And with mighty blows converts him

Into trial shapes of clay which

Only God understands;

While his tortured heart is crying

And he lifts beseeching hands!

How He bends but never breaks

When his good He undertakes;

How He uses whom He chooses,

And which every purpose fuses him;

By every act induces him

To try His splendor out-

God knows what He’s about.


  1. What we often think is a disappointment is really God’s appointment.

Isaiah 49:23 NIV – Kings will be your foster fathers, and their queens your nursing mothers. They will bow down before you with their faces to the ground; they will lick the dust at your feet. Then you will know that I am the Lord; those who hope in me will not be disappointed.”

God is a God of fruitful frustrations.

Philippians 1:12-14 GNV12 I want you to know, my friends, that the things that have happened to me have really helped the progress of the gospel. 13 As a result, the whole palace guard and all the others here know that I am in prison because I am a servant of Christ. 14 And my being in prison has given most of the believers more confidence in the Lord, so that they grow bolder all the time to preach the message fearlessly.

If you miss Spain and go to prison, it doesn’t’ mean the end of everything; it may be the beginning of something.

Hosea 2:15 GNV – I will give back to her the vineyards she had and make Trouble Valley a door of hope. She will respond to me there as she did when she was young, when she came from Egypt.

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