From Frustration to Joy


Lord, how long will you forget me? Forever?
    How long will you look the other way?
How long must I struggle with anguish in my soul,
    with sorrow in my heart every day?
    How long will my enemy have the upper hand?
Turn and answer me, O Lord my God!
    Restore the sparkle to my eyes, or I will die. (Psalm 13:1-3)

Several years ago, Susan and I and our young family went to a family camp at Camp Kuriakos on Sylvan Lake in Alberta. Each morning, while the children were in Vacation Bible School, the adults participated in a Bible Study of the Psalms led by Pastor Telmer Sartison. The first day we were studying the Psalms of Lament with a focus on Psalm 13. We were invited to pair up with someone we did not know and share with each other what this Psalm was saying to us.

ks-kyung-785523-unsplash
Photo by KS KYUNG on Unsplash

We usually think that the Bible is something that we read, but this time the Bible was reading me. I shared with my Bible study partner that this passage was describing exactly how I was feeling right at that moment. At the time, I was in ag business selling fuel and fertilizer to farmers and small commercial businesses. While I enjoyed the work, each year, after making our financial plans and projections something unforeseen would happen to vaporize that year’s anticipated profits. I got so frustrated that a few months earlier, in October, I invited Jesus to be the leader of my life and let him have a go at things. Nothing changed then and the frustration remained.

 

Fast forward to that summer Monday morning at Kuriakos and this passage was now telling me about things that were in my heart that I did not know were there and lifting my eyes, heart and voice to the God who created me and put those longings for more within me.

That day was a Kairos moment for me that moved me to change my career and direction in life.

I am thankful for all the frustration I felt over all those months and years. God was preparing me to be open to a new direction and a closer relationship with him. When the time was just right, he opened first one door, then another, then another after that, each time inviting me to walk through. Though I still have frustrations and challenges in life, I now have a sweet joy that I know comes from Jesus who gave his life for me to give me a life with him that will last forever.

Dear friend, if you find yourself in the middle of frustration, do not be discouraged. Take your frustration to Jesus and let him satisfy the desires of your heart.

Dear Jesus, instead of chasing after stuff, help me to chase after you to soften, satisfy and fill my frustrated heart. Help me to take my frustrations to you and then be open to the new hope that you want to give to me. Amen.

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