Dealing with Past Defeats

Disappointment . . .

the situation didn’t turn out the way you expected or hoped,
your child didn’t turn out the way you wanted,
your marriage didn’t turn out the way you dreamed it would,
your profession is a disappointment,
your job is gone,
life is a disappointment,
you’re shattered . . . but should you be if you are His child?

You prayed, you believed, and God didn’t answer the way you wanted Him to . . .
One of the things that I have had to learn and have to constantly remind myself of is that whatever happens, happens—and once it is done, there is no changing it!

No matter how hard you try, you cannot erase the past. No matter how much you wish, stew, worry, or weep, you cannot undo what has been done. I wish it could be undone, and if I could, I would. But I can’t. And neither can you. I know that, you know that, and God knows that.

However, because He is sovereign and the God of all hope, the reality of the fact that the past cannot be changed need not demoralize or destroy us.

With God, you can handle the past. Whatever has happened in the past need not destroy you.

Yes, there are consequences—but for the child of God, consequences or not, there is hope. And according to Romans 8:28-30, there is the promise of Christlikeness, the assurance of glory—heaven! And where there is hope, there cannot be despair! Think about it!

God is God. And as God, He is sovereign: totally in charge. He rules. There is no other. Look up the following verses in your Bible. Then list below what you learn about God from each of them.

1. Psalm 103:19

2. Isaiah 45:5-7

Now then, how are you going to live in light of these truths? If you will take a good look at your defeats, you will see that many of them came about because you walked by feelings rather than faith; you allowed your emotions to control you rather than the Holy Spirit of God; you allowed your thoughts to dictate your actions rather than the Word of God.

God wants every one of His children to switch over from walking by feelings to walking by faith . . . faith that is based in the truth of His Word. How well He teaches us this through our trials and our failures!

This blog post is excerpted from the out-of-print 30-day devotional “How to Stand Firm Against the Five Deadly D’s” by Kay Arthur.

Additional Bible study resources on Spiritual Warfare.

While you may be familiar with the “Faith Chapter” ([esvignore]Hebrews 11:1-40[/esvignore]), have you ever studied it in-depth? Sweeter Than Chocolate: Hebrews 11 takes you deep into this important chapter. Over the course of six weeks you will learn:

  1. The Secret to Pleasing God
  2. Faithful Promises Deliver Enduring Peace
  3. Are You Living a Bold and Fearless Life?
  4. Hope for the Rest of Us: God Works in Flawed People
  5. The Key to Unlocking the Old Testament
  6. Playing to Win

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