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All of us have had disappointments that were unexpected. Like many unwelcome surprises, they can be devastating and overwhelming. Not only should we leave room for unexpected disappointments and the unknown variable in our lives, but we must also realize that inevitably we will be betrayed and hurt by other people. Perhaps they deceived us into believing they were trustworthy, or they began sincerely and became infected with the viruses of jealousy and greed.

In either case, you will face betrayal at some point along life’s journey. The dreaded darkness that unexpected betrayal and hurt brought by others can make you bitter and unforgiving. The biblical King David, a great warrior and leader, was betrayed by his best friend. He wrote in Psalms “my best friend, the one I trusted completely, the one who shared my food, has turned against me.” What happened to David can happen to anyone of us, no matter how caring we might be.

They say, “if you live long enough, you will discover how fickle and selfish the human heart can be.” It is often the people we love most and trust implicitly who have the greatest power to betray us. So, what can we do? We must deal with the hurt and anger, without allowing either one to blind us to the long-range consequences of bitterness.

We should not be deterred from our goals or other relationships when it happens. Like a child who has learned to walk and gets tripped up by a bully, get back on your feet and continue your journey. You will be a little sore and a bit bruised at first, but the hurt will heal, and you will be stronger for having survived the fall.

The late great singer Betty Wright’s song “After the Pain” has lyrics that speak about God as her reason for hope after the pain.  She writes, “God above that keeps, saying Betty try and don’t give up, you know why the sun is going to shine because you are mine, all mine; you just keep doing your best and I will do the rest.” Unexpected disappointments happen so Never Give Up! Never Give Up! Never Give Up!

By Chaplain Ghosten