Five Ways to Overcome Disappointment

Wednesday was a hard day for our family. Don’t get worried. It was nothing major – just that Jonah was diagnosed with strep.

The “hard part” came because he was contagious and had to stay home from school yesterday. Usually this would not be significant. However, it was a big deal this time because he was missing Field Day.

Field Day.

The most anticipated day of elementary school. The day when you get to play games, run three-legged relays with your friends, carry an egg on a spoon as quickly as you can, and of course, jump in the giant bounce houses.

What five year old boy could resist all that excitement?

I knew I needed to tell Jonah that he would miss Field Day. From past experience, I’ve learned that if I don’t prepare him for unexpected events, he will have a major meltdown. And when I told him he would have to miss Field Day but that he could return to school the following day for his Easter egg hunt and party, he was clearly and rightly upset. He kept saying things like this:

But I’m not THAT sick!

I promise I won’t touch any of my friends.

Please don’t make me miss my field day, mom!


Y’all. I’m not going to lie. It was heartbreaking.

Life is full of disappointments, isn’t it? Everyone experiences heartaches, and our family is no exception.

Failed adoptions

Broken friendships


Unexpected diagnoses

Job disappointments

Can any of you relate?

Some disappointments are small, like anticipating a girls night out and then having to cancel unexpectedly. Other disappointments are huge, such as a major illness or an unexpected change in jobs.

But how we choose to deal with these disappointments will often dictate how well we recover from them.


Remember that the Lord has a plan for your life.

“For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the Lord. “As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.” Isaiah 55:8-9

“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” Jeremiah 29:11

Take time to acknowledge and mourn the losses associated with your disappointments.

The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit. Psalm 34:18

…weeping may remain for a night, but rejoicing comes in the morning. Psalm 30:5b

Trust God’s timing.

Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord. Psalm 27:14

Praise the Lord in the midst of your disappointments.

Sing and make music in your heart to the Lord, always giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ. Ephesians 5:19b-20

Remember that God is for you.

I lift my eyes up to the hills – where does my help come from? My help comes from the Lord, the Maker of heaven and earth. Psalm 121:1-2

And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. Romans 8:28


Disappointments are unfortunately a part of life. But we can combat them with God’s word. I encourage each of you to pick two or three of the Scriptures listed above and hide them in your heart in preparation for the next time life brings you a disappointing situation.

And as we reflect on this Good Friday, the darkest day in history, we are assured that we still have hope, even in the disappointments of it all.

They found the stone rolled away from the tomb. Luke 24:2

“In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” John 16:33

Although Christ was crucified and died a sinner’s death, He is now alive. He conquered death for us, my friends, and He can overcome your disappointments.

Christ is our risen Savior! Hallelujah!

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