North Carolina weather is insane, for the other day, it was 32 degrees and snowing, and it is now 65 degrees and Spring-like, and if that tells you anything about North Carolina, then it tells you that we have all the seasons in one week. We can have winter one day, Spring the next, Summer the next day, and then maybe Autumn at the end of the week. Sometimes, I wonder what clothes to wear, for you never know with North Carolina whether you should be wearing a heavy coat or a cute floral sundress.
Anyways, I have a lot on my heart, which includes more writing as a result of what is on my heart, which makes me happy. I want to begin getting very honest with you in a lot of new ways, and so I decided to begin a new little blogging series where I just say what has been on my heart in the past week. Therefore, every Sunday after church, I will be posting about what has been on my heart in the last week or so, and the idea of this little weekly series makes my heart really happy, for I love being able to see what God is doing or sharing in the lives of others.
For the first installment of “What Is On My Heart,” we are going to be talking about disappointment, which normally tends to hit us in random waves, which has been my situation for the past seven days. I am unsure where this feeling of disappointment originated from, but I have felt the heaviness of it, which has caused a little chaos to erupt into my soul as I try to be still in the midst of it.
Therefore, the word “disappointment” has been on my heart heavily this past week, for I have been going through a few things that has caused havoc in my soul. When havoc is in my soul, I have a tendency to retreat and unplug due to wanting to go off with the Lord and figure this out, for I want to encompass being still, which has been a main point the Lord has been driving into my soul this past week alone.
Though I do have a bubbly personality, I desire for the Lord to continuously instill within me a quiet, gentle, and soft soul that breathes in Jesus while exhaling grace, but with the desire of having such a soul. I do have the tendency of feeling the heaviness with trials immensely, which then makes “being still” become a challenge, for I try to be still, but the heaviness I feel can become immense and cloudy. (But the Lord is working on this as well.)
The other day, I read a post from Desiring God about “suffering well,” and that phrase might make you raise your eyebrows. How does one “suffer well?” Isn’t all suffering heavy on our souls to the point where we all consider it being bad? I began to think over that phrase for a few days as I began to comprehend “suffering well,” but when we examine the phrase, Peter talks about us suffering well, which then reminded me of James.
“My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience.” James 1:2
Though suffering can be quite heavy, unbearable, and disappointing at times, through our trials and tests of faith, we are made strong in the love of the Lord, for the testing of our faith reaps patience. In all honestly, I feel as if we can make suffering look like a bad thing, and while I am not saying suffering is easy, suffering has a way of bringing us together at the throne, of humbling our souls, and of showing us that we need to be still and trust God.
Sometimes, God allows the storm to show us that He is the captain. Sometimes, God allows the waves to crash against the boat to show us that He is the lifeline, and sometimes, God exposes our souls to show us that we shouldn’t be carrying the weight that we are carrying due to Him being the who should carry it. Therefore, in many ways, suffering brings us closer to the Lord, and if we never had a bad day or struggled in our lives, then we would never grow to appreciate His grace and never-ending mercy.
That is what the Lord has shown me in little ways as I was praying, growing in the Word, and become deeply rooted in His grace and mercy while trying to figure out why my soul was so heavy, and in the end, I am learning to dance in the joy of the Lord even in moments of disappointment, for I know and believe that God is greater than my heaviness, greater than the pain, and greater than the disappointments we face in life.
I believe that God is still a God of the impossible, and I believe in the same God who split the sea and who defeated the grave; therefore, if the Lord can defeat the grave, then I know that no mountain is too big for the Lord to overcome. This past week, I have been disappointed due to various things that have been happening at random, and yet the Lord has been showing me that I need to be still and trust His plans, for He knows what He is doing, but I need to be still.
Where I am right now is where God wants me to be before He can ever think abut moving me from point A to point B, so I trust Him. Though I am in the midst of disappointment and wondering what is going on as I continue to walk this path in the unknown, I will continue to dance even in disappointment, for in the end, Jesus is enough, His grace is sufficient, and He is and forever will be good and faithful.
Whenever I hear the words,”He is faithful,” my heart leaps for joy even my suffering and disappointing moments. Though there are times where all I want to do is retreat into the due to the weight of the heaviness, I tel myself to keep dancing even in these moments, for God is good, God is faithful, and He will never leave.
Though the part about Joseph being in the dungeon isn’t that appealing to a lot of people, the dungeon makes my heart leap for joy, for even though Joseph was in the dungeon, the Lord was still faithful, for after the dungeon, the Lord fulfilled His vision and promise. How amazing is that? How amazing is it that even if we are in dungeons, ruts, and quicksand the Lord will still come through for us, but we first have to be still in those tough moments to be able to savor the blessings.
And so I will.
As I am in my dungeon, wilderness, or whatever you want to call this phase, I will dance even in the unknown, even in moments of disappointment, and even in moments where I feel like God is silent, for at the end of the day, I found out what the real test of faith was this week, and the real test is declaring that He is good even when you aren’t getting prayers answered, even when it seems as if He is silent, and even when it seems as if your current circumstances say otherwise to the words and promises of God.
“For the Lord is good;
His mercy is everlasting,
And His truth endures to all generations.” Psalm 100:5
That is the test, and so I declare His faithfulness in my life even if I have been heavy-hearted with disappointment, for there is one thing my heart has forever joy in, and that is His faithfulness.
With that being said, if you have been like me and had a week where things didn’t go right, where you found yourself in random disappointment, and where you felt your soul become unsettled with the unknown, keep on dancing even in disappointment, keep finding truth in the Word of God, and keep becoming well watered by drinking deeply from the well, for He is the same today as He is yesterday, and the Lord fulfills all of His promises, for He is faithful, He is good, and most importantly, He is God.
Therefore, this is what has been on my heart this past week, and I don’t know what will happen this new week as we begin to enter into it, but I do know one thing; the Lord will be faithful, the Lord will still be good, and even in the unknown, He is there, so I will dance even in those heavy moments, even in disappointment, and even when my heart is heavy, for He is faithful, and my heart should not be afraid.
“To everything there is a season,
A time for every purpose under heaven:” Ecclesiastes 3:1
When all is said and done, I will be still and trust His plan rather than giving up, for wouldn’t it be a shame if we gave up on God right before the blessing? Wouldn’t it be a shame if we gave up right before the door to the dungeon unlocked? Therefor, as I sit here in the unknown, I will continue to dance, sing, and declare His goodness, for the dungeon doesn’t last forever, but His love and steadfast mercies do, and so in the end, I will choose joy and whatever is lovely, for He is and forever will be good, good, good.