October 7, 2013
READ: Romans 5:1-5
This hope will not lead to disappointment. For we know how dearly God loves us, because He has given us the Holy Spirit to fill our hearts with His love (v.5).
Ian Usher was so disappointed with his life that he decided to auction it on eBay. He wanted to rid himself of all the memories he shared with his ex-wife. The Australian said, “On the day [all my possessions] are sold, I intend to walk out of my front door with my wallet in one pocket and my passport in the other and nothing else at all.” His plans included a short visit to his mother before heading to the airport to figure out a new place to call home. “I’ll see where life takes me from there. It’s time to shed the old and in with the new.” A novel approach, but definitely not the way Paul told the Roman Christians to handle life’s disappointments.
The apostle encouraged the believers to remember that Jesus’ death gave them peace with God and a new life in Him (Romans 5:1). This peace would empower them to rejoice in—not run from—life’s disappointments (v.3). Sufferings of all kinds would produce endurance—the ability to persevere through difficulties without running away. Endurance, Paul said, would develop, deepen and prove their character (v.4). A deepened and proven character would produce confidence that God would be with them in any disappointment. This confidence in God wouldn’t disappoint, for His love would be poured into the believers’ hearts by the Holy Spirit (v.5). God’s love provided the assurance that their confidence in Him was justified.
Instead of running from our challenges, we can rejoice as we endure them, knowing that they’ll help develop a deeper and proven character within us. And that makes for greater confidence in God as we face present and future disappointments. —Marvin Williams
Read 1 Samuel 30:3-6 and see how David endured disappointment and distress.
The last time you experienced disappointment, what was your initial response? When challenges come your way, what are some practical things you can do to express confidence in God?