It’s never easy dealing with disappointment. We want something so hard that it hurts when we don’t get it. This recently happened to me.
I’m getting ready to retire later this year after 20-plus years in the Air Force. The hard process of finding a job begins. Thought things might be going well when a highly regarded government agency contacted me in January about interviewing for a job. It was going to be in Public Affairs – right up my alley. This might be easier than I imagined.
I interviewed in late January. Six weeks later I learned I didn’t get the job. The news devastated me. However, I’m determined not to let the disappointment dominate me. This just wasn’t the right job for me. God has plans for me. He promises me in Jeremiah 29:11 … “For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.” No, I don’t believe in prosperity gospel; I just know God has a plan for me.
Why do I feel that? Because God knows me intimately:
For you formed my inward parts;
you knitted me together in my mother’s womb.
I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made.
Wonderful are your works;
my soul knows it very well.
Psalm 139:13-14 (ESV)
Now, it’s time to get started in earnest. USAJOBS.gov and Monster.com are going to be my best friends. Use the power of the Internet to find the perfect job. There’s something out there for me.
It’s hard dealing with disappointment, but choosing not to dwell on it is a choice I’m making. After all, Viktor E. Frankl wrote about the importance of personal choice in his wonderful book “Man’s Search for Meaning”:
And there were always choices to make. Every day, every hour, offered the opportunity to make a decision, a decision which determined whether you would or would not submit to those powers which threatened to rob you of your very self, your inner freedom; which determined whether or not you would become the plaything of circumstance, renouncing freedom and dignity to become molded into the form of the typical inmate.
Doctor Frankl knew something about the power of choice. He survived the horrors of the Holocaust because he made a choice to survive and see his wife again. Sadly, she perished in the camps. He didn’t know that. The possibility of seeing her again kept him from succumbing to despair and death. It can keep me from disappointment.
I make this choice…to persevere and not succumb to disappointment. Thank you, Doctor Frankl. More importantly, thank you God for this life lesson.