Often it's not the events of life that get to us as much as our expectations of it. We make plans, anticipating that they will turn out as we have arranged, and are disappointed when it just doesn't work out. We work hard for it, and expect a raise. Instead, we get a notice that the company is shuttering its doors. We fall in love, expecting it to last forever, and are heartbroken when the disagreements and irritations end in divorce. We exercise, eat right, and are diagnosed with cancer. Life isn't fair. Sometimes it hits us in major trials, other times in small irritations, either of which can, if we allow them, take us in a downward spiral of self-pity.
Since beginning upright bass lessons a couple months ago, I've not been able to practice in between lessons because I don't have an instrument. So I've kept my eyes open, consulted with a luthier who specializes in violins, cellos, and basses, and just two days ago settled on a deal for a vintage instrument in great condition. I had planned on picking it up tomorrow, but a few hours ago, received an email from the seller telling me he just sold it to someone else. It's not a life or death situation by any means, but I'd be lying if I said I wasn't disappointed.
There was a time in my life when something like this would have sent me into a tailspin. I'd have been rehearsing the "what if's" and "if only's" for weeks to come. Sure, it's disappointing, but I am convinced God is in control, and that he loves me. This isn't the end of the world, is certainly not even close to some of the things some of my friends are dealing with. But whether the issue is major or minor, trusting in the sovereignty of God helps keep the boat steady in the storm. Tonight I am grateful that years ago I learned that lesson, and that his plans for me are not thwarted by life's disappointments, or even its disasters.