As someone who has faced as much disappointment as most people, I’ve come to trust not that events will always unfold exactly as I want, but that I will be fine either way. Marianne Williamson
Meditation: Sometimes we pray for just one thing or one outcome. We fixate our emotional and spiritual life on one particular wish. Our prayer becomes secretly a way of trying to manipulate God into cooperating with us and our wishes. When we mature, we learn more about disappointment and about prayer. We learn that life does not always develop as we wish and pray for. Some of us lose their faith in God over this, thinking: “What good does prayer do, if I never get what I pray for?” But prayer is not about manipulating God or about getting our way. Prayer is about the process of surrendering. Prayer is our dialoguing with God while expressing our longings, our needs and our doubts and fears. And as we pour all of those out, and as we work our way in prayer towards “letting go”, we at times experience the emerging of a sense of trust that whatever will be and whatever will happen, we will be fine: If my prayer is being answered in the way I hope for, I will be fine. If my prayer is not being answered in the way I hope for, but that which I fear or something unexpected will come true, I will be fine as well. God will hold me, no matter what. God will make a way. And thus, prayer means growing in trust. It means letting go of our need to predict and to control the future. As we struggle our way in prayer from anxious wishing to trusting, we are being set free from fear.
Prayer: God, I give you my anxiety about the future. I am letting go of needing to know how things will enfold. Strengthen my trust in You. You are awaiting me from the future. You love me and You care about me. Even if things don’t work out the way I hope, You will be with me. And so, I can let go. I can be content not knowing. Whatever awaits me, You will be present and You will give me strength, no matter what. And I am grateful. Amen
I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do all this through him who gives me strength. Philippians 4:12-13 (NIV)