I counted down the days until we could spend time walking along the beach, exploring the coastline and viewing the area.
Reference: The Lord’s hand was with them, and a great number of people believed and turned to the Lord. (Acts 11:21 NIV)
Explore: My husband and I were exhausted. We’d been running around after our three foster children (4, 6, and 19 years old) and we were in need of a rest.
We were able to coordinate a very special weekend away, so we booked a cabin in a seaside town, just out of Melbourne. I counted down the days until we could spend time walking along the beach, exploring the coastline and viewing the area.
As we led up to our special weekend away I looked ahead at the weather report. “Cloudy with patchy showers” was the prediction, but I knew the conditions would change by the time we went away.
They did change. By the time the weekend came it was “rain and thunderstorms” and they were not wrong. The one time we did venture out of the cabin we were at the end of a pier when sheets of rain came across the water and saturated us to the bone!
While this was disappointing for our weekend away it did mean one thing. We caught up on sleep, we relaxed and we spent lots of time chatting together.
While the weather had initially dampened our weekend, it ended up being the main thing that assisted our refreshment as we headed back into the busyness of life.
Application: It’s funny how a negative can often be turned into a positive if you have the right attitude and trust in God. While our little weekend away was not a life or death situation, I actually think that the rain was exactly what we needed to refresh ourselves from a tough couple of months.
There were many tough moments in the lives of the apostles as they continued to forge the church after Jesus’ resurrection. And, just like in my situation, it’s amazing how God continued to bring positive outcomes even after disappointing times.
When the believers scattered across the area after the stoning of Stephen, some could have thought that this would reduce the effectiveness of the new church. However, when God has a plan He is not about to let people’s fear stop the spreading of His word.
Instead, with the believers dispersed, it opened up the opportunity for more people to hear the good news and turn to Jesus. We will never know whether their evangelism would have been this widespread without the persecution, but we can see that God is not about to let a hateful act hinder His love.
We all experience set backs in varying degrees. Don’t see these as God holding you back, but know that God can work through these times to bring forth fruit that you never even dreamed of.
Prayer: Lord, it’s never pleasant to go through hardships. When we are in the midst of despair may we continue to hold onto You, knowing in faith that You can bring something beautiful into our future. Amen.
When has something good come from a disappointing situation for you?
This article was written by Linda Bailey
Linda started theological studies in 1999 in Australia. After working for ten years in various church ministries, she now works as the breakfast producer at 89.9 LightFM - the Christian radio station in Melbourne, Australia. She writes blogs every day about passages she is currently reading in the Bible. Follow her on Google Plus +Linda Bailey or Facebook by clicking the like button on the right of this page.