Last week was disappointing. To be honest I’m understating what happened. It was annoying, head spinning, time wasting, emotionally exhausting all consuming, extremely frustrating!
Why do we understate our reality? Is it because of a “British stiff upper lip” (whatever that is!) or do we think if we don’t tell anyone what we are struggling with, then it is not real? Why do we downgrade the variety of extreme challenges we come up against, simply a ‘disappointment’?
But every day, every week we each suffer disappointments. Some of them are mild like my DIY projects that always seem to take longer than expected, some are extreme like loved ones contracting life threatening illnesses.
When these disappointments happen to us, we all respond so differently. Some curl up into a ball, shut themselves away and assume that this is the end of the world as we know it. Some write positive statements on post it notes, stick them to their mirrors and fridges and chant them out loud on the hour every hour to find a way through the present crisis they find themselves in.
My disappointment last week? A month ago we were given free use of premises in the centre of the town, an ideal location for the Romsey Foodbank, our Church offices, Recording Studio, Prayer Room, CAP Debt Centre and space for a Community Drop In. We were told it would be short term, but probably 6 – 12 months. On that basis, we moved in, set up home, thanking God, as well as a bit of self-congratulation, for such a provision. It was working perfectly for the volunteer team in the Foodbank sorting out the food and serving those in need, it was excellent for the office staff and volunteers who were able to work together in a much more collaborative environment. Everyone was feeling at home and excited for the future and what else we could do in the space.
Then I get a phone call last week saying, “really sorry, situation has changed we need the premises back in 28 days.” In that moment everything changed. How was I going to tell the team of hardworking volunteers who had helped us move in? How would we find another venue that would work so well? Maybe I should curl up in a ball and hope it was a bad dream?
But it wasn’t. It was real.
And that’s the first step with dealing with disappointment. Recognise it is real and then secondly share that reality with others. Together is always a better way to overcome disappointments. A problem shared maybe a problem halved, but it is still a problem and in community with friends and family, you will find a way through and who knows, possibly even a better solution!
Finally when dealing with disappointment – PRAY. To be honest it should alway be the first thing to do, but often we get so upset or outraged by the challenge we are facing, we forget to pray until we share our needs with godly friends who point us to prayer where we should have started.
Philippians 4:6 Don’t worry about anything; instead pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done.
So, if you want to deal with your disappointment – recognise it is real, share with some christian friends and get praying!
Or, you can always go back to sticking post it notes on mirrors and chanting positive one-liners at yourself every morning and see what happens…