Last night I had a high calling from God. For Him to see in my private room and for all of the principalities present it was a big night. I was called to bring God glory amidst hurt and not turn to idols. I was “dealing with disappointment.”
Years ago the Holy Spirit let me know that I was turning to other things or people in sadness, and God wanted me to turn to Him. I would get down on my knees and say, “I don’t know how. Please show me how to only turn to You.”
After years gone by of attempting to escape pain by other “instant” means, last night I walked through the door around 7:00 and thought of no other option—glory to God, it has finally become a natural response to go to Him.
Last night I realized that I could not turn on my lap top and lose myself in work; I was not to turn on the TV; I did not think of eating to fill a void (which is one of the chief idols of Christians); with all of my mature, in-depth Christian friends I did not even want to make a phone call to talk to anyone; I did not think of shopping (which was merciful of God on my budget :-), and I found myself having just one desire: RUNNING TO MY SAVIOR.
I prayed and talked to the Lord about everything and felt Him near me. Then, I took out my Bible and starting reading the book of Acts, just one chapter after another. Then, I took out my book Things to Come by Dwight Pentecost and read about the covenants, reminded that my wonderful God has made a covenant to me—to stay in my heart, to protect me (even in the midst of disappointment) for His BEST, and to never, ever leave.
I listened to sermons by Walter Martin that thrilled my soul as I was there in bed drifting off to sleep. As I listened God let me realize that HE had finally, graciously gotten me to the place in my life of turning to Him in disappointment. The hurt felt good as I abided in Him.
Many Christians came to mind last night who do not show me this testimony. I thought of many people who know a lot about the Bible…loving and knowledgeable…however, they do not have the testimony of going to God in pain. I thought of men who speak in churches who have written books about God who flirt with women (even when they are married!), because they don’t know how to abide in God. Most people “use” others. I was reminded that there is nothing more mature in my life as a Christian than learning to abide in Jesus in happiness and pain and not turn to other things or other people to make me feel better.
He was faithful last night to make me feel better. When I am shocked about something, He is not frazzled. When I think I know a person and find out I don’t, my Lord is still the “One who knows all men.” He is still just as faithful in the sadness as the happiness.
I was reminded of a verse which used to mean so much to me when I was working in the music industry in Nashville writing songs for publishers, singing demos for writers in the studio, and in and out of production deals as a singer:
“Whoever believes in Him will not be disappointed.”
I memorized that verse back then and thought it was in context of a record deal. I smile as I realize now that that promise is pertaining to more happiness than a record deal could ever offer. A “record deal” could never come close to all that God has prepared for those who love Him.
I have also gotten to the place in my life where I can thank God honestly for disappointments, realizing that He is drawing me close to Him, and He is always protecting me for something better—even for a moment of abiding in Him in sadness as something “better” and “stronger” than the blasé ease of pleasure. So, I earnestly thanked Him last night for the disappointment and for every difficult situation that draws me closer to Him.
Last night, as He was my all in all, I was not the least bit disappointed in His love. I listened to great sermons by Walter Martin on “Black Moslems” (“Black Supremacy”) and “Theosophy” (Gnosticism and the occult), learning quite a bit about how different error is from the glorious truth of our Lord. I also read in Acts how people were forbidden to speak of Jesus, and these same believers prayed for more boldness after these threats.
I look forward to another night with God tonight, and I THANK HIM for His protection and love, even enough to allow me to feel sadness in order to keep me right where He wants me to be, changing me from “glory to glory” and getting me, by His mercy alone, to the place of having no other idols in the midst of fears, sorrows, longings, and temporary “disappointments”. He is worthy of my praise at all times!
I also thought last night of my former Sunday School teacher from years ago, Will Varner, speaking about how we must “put off the old, and put on the new; put off the old, and put on the new.” He would say it more than once. For, when we “put off the old” we must “put on the new” in seeking after Christ as a substitution for whatever pleasure we are faced in living without. Without “putting on the new” in Jesus we only have the option of running to false gods (i.e., overeating, shopping, other people, too much exercise, too much work…), all of which only lead to more disappointment. However (smiling), there is an option that will bring no shame:
“For the Scripture says, ‘Whoever believes in Him will not be disappointed.’” Romans 10:11.
And God certainly does not lie! Disappointed? Nope. In His presence there is fullness of JOY!