Disappointment and Deception

Things were getting better, or so I thought.

Could I really see my prodigal far off coming home?

My hope, that had diminished to nearly nothing, began to blossom…and then how quickly it faded.

A letter…a sickening feeling rising up from the deepest part of me…excruciating pain…it has been 6 years…

I thought it was getting better…

I see Christ on the cross, I hang there with Him in my agony…How can I live with this pain again? Where is Your resurrection power?

I  know that I can do nothing…

Helpless, weeping, I toss and turn in the dark hours of the night…getting up before dawn praying for understanding…for peace.

I glance at the table across the room and there sits a small booklet a friend had given me months ago, and what does it say?

When Disappointment Deceives”…

Disappointment…is a part of life, that can show up unannounced at any time and any place, parking itself in our hearts with a crushing weight. Whether it’s a major disappointment or the slow accumulation of what seems to be minor letdowns, its heaviness can smother our hearts and suffocate our joy.”

Wow! This is what I am experiencing. Once again I am amazed how God speaks to us.

“No one is immune to disappointment, though some have been led to believe that following the God of the Bible spares us from being let down. But even He is not spared from experiencing disappointment. The book of Genesis tells us that after seeing “how great man’s wickedness on the earth had become,” the Creator’s heart was “grieved” and “filled with pain” (Genesis 6:5-6).

And when God took on human likeness and became a man, He continued to experience disappointment . Listen to the heartache Jesus expressed over Jerusalem’s unwillingness to embrace Him as the Messiah: O Jerusalem, Jerusalem,…how often I have longed to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, but you were not willing (Matthew 23:37).”

“If God isn’t exempt from disappointment then we shouldn’t expect a free pass either. The fact of the matter is that disappointment is an inescapable part of life.”

So where does the deception come in to play…

“Sometimes a collision with disappointment can help us see more clearly what is true. It can grab our attention and give us a chance to reevaluate our motives or the world in which we live.”

I think I was deceiving myself in thinking that my prodigal was coming home, when in reality he was still very far off. I wanted and hoped for things to be different, because I’m weary…I want this to be over. But it is not over…

“The deepest damage is not caused so much by our painful, disappointing circumstances but by the lies that sneak in through our disappointment. Life in a fallen world will have more than its share of letdowns, but it is the lies that often come with them that pose the greatest threat – for we suffer our deepest wounds from those lies. A lie is a thought or conclusion that persuades us to tear ourselves down, stop caring for others, or love God less.”

Here I see my prodigal and his thinking. He has twisted some statements made by family members into statements of rejection. No matter how many times I tell him the truth, he refuses to believe me. These twisted statements or damaging lies have caused him a tremendous amount of pain and prevent him from coming home.

“When we know that people are disappointed in us or we fall short of our own expectations, we will eventually be tempted to believe the derogatory lie that something is seriously wrong with us-that we are undeserving, below average at best, and simply not worth the time…

As disappointment continues to race through our lives, untrue thoughts about God begin to surface. Thoughts like: He isn’t good. He can’t be trusted. He doesn’t care about me

The damaging lies about ourselves, life and God are not true, but they feel true.”

Boy, I can sure relate to this…can you? How do we deal with this? How do we get our thoughts in right perspective and discern what is a lie and what is truth?

My next post in this series will be…We Are Under Attack.

If you can’t wait until then and/or you would like to read the booklet yourself, or the PDF version, go to…

 discovery series booklets

Painting O Jerusalem by Greg Olson


6 thoughts on “Disappointment and Deception

  1. My dear Sister, I can relate! I begin to think, my prodigal is still out there, when will it be over. Then I rest for a while, thinking the major, painful storm is over. It has been 2 1/2 years now, and God is strengthening me, so I will now pray, trust, and well at least I am not being attacked as anymore, because how can I be, when I am totally cut off! I will get a glimpse of hope, but then:
    WRONG! The relatives or a friend calls again! The news is: Now she will give herself a “wedding”? Oh my, the pain is excruciating as I feel the poison of this dart, this lie fill the vessels in my heart again.
    We, parents, could not, did not approve of her “unsaved” boyfriend, because she is unequally yoked according to the Bible. So now she will one more time, “show us a thing or two” by giving herself a wedding! Asking other men to take her Daddy's place and give her away! We are not invited, of course, and anyway, how can we sit there and pretend it to be JOYFUL?
    My heart sinks as I think, “who is that other woman helping her plan the wedding, choose a dress, etc.? All those things a mother dreams of doing with her daughter.” And what man will dare to take her father's place? The pain in his heart of his little girl doing this to the man she once called, “Daddy” and once she showed him love and honor.
    Yes, I know disappointment, sorrow, and pain. My prodigal has made us to be “parents who are closed minded, parents who are too hard to get along with, Judgemental, self-righteous, and parents who forsook her!” Does that disappoint and hurt? YES! But the FACT is:
    I have learned that the lies of satan, about us (the parents), ARE JUST THAT! LIES! “For God is not the author of confusion, but of peace” ( I Cor.14:33). Satan wants us to hate ourselves, doubt ourselves, doubt our relationship with God, and doubt His ability to help us. He wants us to DO IT OUR WAY and just GET IN THE WAY of the LORD’s WORK! Why? Because satan fears God much more than us! If Satan can undermine us, make us feel worthless, then, he has destroyed another one in the home. He just wants to paralyze us, so we can not do anything to bring others to the LORD!
    How do we deal with them?
    Once I fell apart, once I got bitter, finally I took that to the LORD, asked for His help to forgive and not allow bitterness in my heart anymore. God did that for me.
    Now, when I feel that happening, I do cry, but I go as quickly as possible to a quiet place, usually a walk alone. I cry and cry out to God. He hears me. I complain, I cry of help, I beg for His arm to hold me up, I cry out for Him to save me from the enemy, to tighten up the armor, to cover me with His wings. “Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.” ( Hebrews 4:16) I just pray His Words over and over, I sing a song of praise to Him, usually an old hymn. I eventually hear His voice whisper to me,”peace, be still, know that I am God”, and I hear Him remind me, ” I already Know all of this, but I am happy that you came to me again instead of trying on your own to find the answer, instead of writing letters to defend yourself, etc.”. “Now once again SURRENDER all to Me, lay your child at My feet”. ( “When thou passest through the waters, I will be with thee..” “Beloved think it not strange concerning the fiery trial….ye are partakers of Christ’s sufferings..”) So I do, and I cry, and I pray for His strength, and for His right arm of righteousness to destroy the works of the devil, and His arms to lift me up again and dust me off (because like a bull rushing through a crowd, that devil charged through and knocked me off my feet again when I wasn't looking). But I was only bruised, and this time I am stronger than I was 2 1/2 yrs ago, and I stand up with anger toward the devil, not my child. I have to remember that I battle against the evil powers , not flesh and blood. “…cast down, but not destroyed” ( II Cor. 4:8,9)

  2. continued from above: So, you think, wow! A woman who is growing? But she keeps going to the LORD in tears! King David, (if you read the Psalms) many times went crying, then before his prayer is over, he is again reminded of God’s power over the enemy! He gains strength, boldness, and courage to go on again in the Name of The LORD! We can do the same, without being ashamed and feeling worthless. God knows our frail frames.

    I have to be reminded by the Holy Spirit that the storm is going to be over someday in God's time. Until then, I will hurt, but I must stay out of the way and allow God to deal with it His way, so that the prodigals will learn the lessons, instead of just a band aid put on the problem.
    Disappointments! I have plenty, but now I am looking at it a new way: Do I really want MY WAY? or, am I Going to LET GOD? When am I going to stop believing the lies of those who find it easier to blame? When will I just LET go of trying to Control or FIX it? Am I right with God? That is what I am to be concerned with! God will deal with the other person! That is not my job! “For the LORD God will help me; therefore shall I not be confounded: therefore have I set my face like flint, and I know that I shall not be ashamed.” (Isaiah 50:7).
    One lady put it this way, “collateral damage”! Will I Allow my prodigal or my disappointment to destroy me too! NO! I have to remember that God made me. I am His, I am valuable! I must remember that I did my job. I did my best raising that person God's way, so now! He or she is responsible for their own actions!
    I am NOT the blame. My place now is to be sure that I am right with God and if I am then STOP believing the LIE of satan! I am reminded to think of “whatsoever things are true..” ( Phil.4:6-8) I am to set an example before others, and let God straighten the crooked paths!

    God's Word reminds us over and over again, if we walk His way, the world will hate us, as it hated Christ Jesus! Are we too good to suffer for Christ? He was rejected and we will be too. It is to be expected and He warned us of it.
    As for me? I choose The LORD! even if I must suffer a season! Someday every knee shall bow to the LORD! “Persecuted, but not forsaken..” ( II Cor. 4:8,9)

    How do I deal with Disappointment? I used to handle it with My Heart! Now I give it to GOD! I have to, and I have to again, I surrender, and I surrender daily. It works! And it is getting easier. I am TRUSTING MORE every month and every year. I pray it will be soon that God says to this storm, “peace be still”, and we will have a Banquet!

  3. Pingback: We Are Under Attack | Helping Hurting Parents of Prodigals

  4. Pingback: How Do We Respond to Lies | Helping Hurting Parents of Prodigals

  5. Pingback: A Way Toward Healing and Freedom | Helping Hurting Parents of Prodigals

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