Who is louder
November 30, 1999, 12:00 AM

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction so that we will be able to comfort those who are in any affliction with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God. 2 Corinthians 1:3-4

We've all gone through our fair share of disappointments and struggles. Unfortunately, character-defining moments are usually par for the course. I know dealing with my own unmet expectations is one thing. Yes, they sting, and sometimes I have to keep myself from punching my ticket on the cynical train. But, countless examples of God's faithfulness allow me to deal with the discomfort while remaining curious about what God is doing inside my heart. 

On the other hand, nothing prepares you as a father to walk alongside your kids when their dreams shatter into a million pieces. You hurt because they hurt. You mourn because they mourn. But, in between the tears, there are tricky questions like WHY? where no response soothes the pain. The only thing I know to do is remind them of God's promises and the truth of who they are in Christ. 

The cross makes them His. He will never leave or forsake them. He has a purpose for their lives and equipped them with gifts and talents. We can't control our circumstances, but we have a say in our response to them. God is moving even when we can't see Him. Often, doing the right thing can be the most challenging way, but it's worth it.  Amid the noise speaking into their lives, I want God’s voice to be the loudest. 

What voice are you allowing to speak into your soul? Who has your ear when life's inevitable disappointment appears on your doorstep? Are those cries of the enemy or whispers from the Holy Spirit? God often speaks in a "still small voice" to direct us, challenge us and encourage us in His path for our lives. He speaks to us in a whisper because He is close. He doesn't need to talk any louder. We have to slow down, be still, tune our ears and listen. 

All of us will come face-to-face with disappointment and unmet expectations. They have the power to pull us away from Christ or draw us closer to Him. Our response depends on what we pick up when we let go of our expectations. Rather than cling to things that will let us down, we need to anchor ourselves in God's promises. If we do this, no matter what tries to pull us off course or tempts us to drift, we can continue our pursuit of His character. Who tends to have the loudest voice when you encounter disappointment and trying circumstances?

Prayer: Father God, when you speak truth into my life, help me to listen. May I quiet everything else around me and let Your words define who I am. Teach me cling to Your promises instead of my expectations. In Jesus’ name, Amen.