Sunday, April 22, 2012

Dressed Up Blessings

What do we do with hurts and disappointments?  How do we deal with unfulfilled expectations?  Who do we turn to when we desperately need to talk?  Hurts, disappointments, unfulfilled expectations, desire to be heard... all are opportunities to turn to Christ.  Each one is the wrapping on a gift, a blessing He wants us to have. 

So many times I file my hurts and disappointments away to be dealt with later.  Out of sight, out of mind, right?  Maybe I'm just overreacting.  A little time will take care of it.  Nope.  Weeks, months of procrastination only cause the feelings to grow stronger.  Especially when I feed my negative feelings by talking it out with a close friend.  How many times have I realized, up in the middle of a conversation, just how bothered I really am?

I use unfulfilled expectations to foster feelings of self-pity.  Coveting isn't just wanting your neighbor's car.  Sometimes it presents itself in a much less obvious package like an unhealthy desire for your worship leader's ability to lead beautiful prayers or your friend's great relationship with her sister.  How many times have I thought "it's just not fair", or "why can't I have that too"?

And when I desperately need someone to listen and understand me, I turn to close friends or to my husband.  Knowing full well, yet ignoring the fact that my ranting and raving is influencing their opinion about the source of my struggle.  How many times have I wished I could call on my grandmother's wisdom, for her ability to listen to my heart and then say exactly what I needed to hear?

But God revealed something to me today- these feelings are blessings that are only dressed up as hurts.  Underneath the wrapping, they are opportunities to experience a deeper relationship with Him.  In Him, I have the freedom to face them without guilt and shame.  He doesn't shake a scolding finger or wrinkle His eyebrows in displeasure.  His face is a picture of empathy and tenderness.  His love draws me close and I see the power He has to heal me, to give me His heart.  I understand that the Comforter, a very part of Him, dwells inside me.  Through Him, I have the power to overcome.  Through Him, I can see people as He sees them.  Through Him, I can love as He loves.... without favoritism, without judgement, without obligation. 

My hurts and disappointments become an opportunity to encourage.  My unfulfilled expectations become a mission field.  My need to be heard is met in the confirmation of love on Calvary and the presence of His Spirit that is always present inside me.

Praise God! As Ann Voskamp says "All is grace."  Truly.

Some teens sang this at church this morning.  So encouraging.


  1. wonderful, convicting thoughts to begin a new week. Thank you, Katie! The part about how coveting can present itself is so true, such a deceptive tool of Satan. Blessings on your day...

  2. Awesome post...Katie. Definitely reality of the journey I'm on. Isn't it such a comfort to know we can take those feelings to our Father & allow Him to bring healing & we don't have to depend on the circumstances to change...if we can wrap our frail human minds around it, that is!! "When our happiness depends on other people's responses, we will manipulate." Such freedom...but our emotions sure put up a fight when they aren't immediately fulfilled. Thank you, Father, for Your tender patience!

  3. Katie, you have such amazing insight. Thanks for sharing such a thought provoking post.


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