This morning I nearly made a terrible mistake. In the process of packing my husband’s lunch, I grabbed the peanut butter from the pantry, not realizing that I had grabbed the jar of chunky peanut butter instead of smooth. I like chunky (peanut butter, that is), but my husband does not. It wasn’t until the knife was inches from the inside of the jar that I realized what I was doing. I replaced the cap, grabbed the proper jar of peanut butter and made his sandwich.
Can you imagine the disappointment my poor husband would have felt if he had pulled out his sandwich only to discover that it was chunky peanut butter? He would have eaten it, of course, but he still would have been disappointed, much like we are when life doesn’t give us what we were expecting. We have our dreams and goals. We know exactly what we want out of life, and we spend our time, money and other resources trying to bring those desires to fruition. But then, life gets a little nutty, and we find our dreams getting farther from view. And in that moment, we discover the true depths of disappointment.
I wish I could now tell you the secret to a disappointment-free life or a three-step plan to banish discouragement forever, but I fear those answers are far beyond my limited knowledge and wisdom. What I can tell you, however, is that our lives (nuts and all) are in the Father’s hands, and He knows exactly what He’s doing. Unlike my situation with my husband’s lunch this morning, it is no accident when life gets a little nutty. The circumstances that block our dreams or change our directions are not random events but rather tools of God to lead and guide us where He wants us to go. It’s not that He doesn’t want us to have what we want out of life, but rather that He desires to give us something even better.
Sometimes life doesn’t work out the way we had planned, but we can take comfort in the fact that our Faithful Friend has a better plan. Rather than dwell in disappointment, we can be thankful that our Lord loves us enough to work out what is best for us. We can rest in the knowledge that, no matter how difficult the circumstances may seem, He is in control and is presently working all things for our good (Romans 8:28).
So, when life gets a little nutty, don’t despair. We may not know what God is doing, but He does. And that’s really all that matters.
Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us, Unto him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus throughout all ages, world without end. Amen. – Ephesians 3:20-21