Like the child who throws a fit in the toy store because his parents do not get him what he wants. Like the employee who resents the boss who does not give him the promotion. Like the wife who gives her spouse the cold shoulder because she does not receive the birthday present she was expecting…

Disappointment disturbs delight.

And though I was unaware of it at the time, this principle was at work within my relationship with God as well.

You see, I had expectations.

I was supposed to serve God and, in gladly doing so, I had a guarantee that He would serve me. I was supposed to give to God and, in consistently doing so, I could be sure that He would give to me. I was supposed to pray to God and, in humbly doing so, He would answer.

I was under the impression that if I served God, I would secure my happiness. I believed if I loved God, I would always feel His love for me. I thought that if I was committed to God, I could somehow control His hand.

Have you ever had similar feelings or expectations?

But, after over 15 years of living my life in this way, it didn’t seem to be working out like I thought it would. I wasn’t experiencing the benefits I thought I would experience by committing my life to Christ.

I was disappointed.

Areas of letdown and disappointment with God could be found in the following areas of my life:

  1. Finances — It was very hard to be in awe of a God who I perceived wasn’t bringing into my life the type of financial security and success that I believed He had promised me.
  2. Career — I found it very difficult to worship a God who I perceived wasn’t furthering along and blessing the career that I believed He had called me to pursue!
  3. Relationships — It was tough to praise a God who I perceived was removing relationships from my life that I believed He had placed into my life in the first place.

And there is no doubt in my mind that these disappointments became a major obstacle to my awe of God.

It became very hard for me to joyfully lift God up because I felt He had consistently let me down.

It’s difficult to be in wonder of someone who you conclude isn’t being very wonderful. It’s difficult to praise someone who you conclude isn’t acting very praiseworthy. It’s difficult to be in awe of someone who you conclude is being awful.

In future posts, I will discuss how we can avoid and overcome the “obstacle of awe” known as disappointment, but in the mean time I encourage you to consider the following questions:

How have you been disappointed by God? How have those disappointments impacted the awe and wonder you have of God?