May 13, 2018

The Path: Dealing with unreachable destinations  Proverbs 13:12

So far in our series on The Path:

1. Your direction determines your destination.

2. Life is a series of course corrections.

3. We shouldn’t trust our hearts

4. Wise people seek counsel.

5. Attention determines direction.

So what do you do when you realize that the destination you’re trying to reach can't be reached. That the dream you had is not going to come true, that the hope you had is going to go unfulfilled. What happens when you find yourself trying to reach a destination that is unreachable? Some destinations are unreachable. Sometimes dreams don’t come true. Some dreams can’t come true. Some destinations become unreachable because of lifestyle choices.

Maybe, If we could stop the clock we might be able to reach any destination we choose. But there aren’t any time-outs in life. The clock is always running. At some point we wake to reality.

Listen to what Solomon’s wisdom is today “The Bible says, Prov. 13:12 “Hope deferred makes the heart sick;but a longing fulfilled is a tree of life”

That’s true, isn’t it? When you realize a destination is unrealizable your heart gets sick. It’s the natural first reaction. We ache -we hurt -we wake up gasping in the middle of the night.

What do you do when you can’t reach your destination? You get heartsick. When you are heartsick we either stay there and get bitter or work at it and get better. Your second option is to do what Paul did.

1. Paul prayed fervently 2 Cor. 12: 7-10 - “Three times i pleaded with the Lord to take it away from me.”

2. You can listen for God’s voice. Vs 9 “Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.”

3. You can accept reality and find the good in it. Vs 10 - "That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.

4. You can use your hardship for God’s glory.  “My Father, if it is possible, may this cup be taken from me. Yet not as I will, but as you will” (Matthew 26:39).

I don’t know a single person who has had all their dreams fulfilled. Or a single person who hasn’t had hardships. Look at the following verses, notice the “buts”:

"In this world you will have trouble. BUT take heart! I have overcome the world." -  Matthew 16:33.

“Hope deferred makes the heart sick; BUT a longing fulfilled is a tree of life.”Proverbs 13:12.

BUT we know that in all things God works for thecgood of those who love him…” Romans 8:28.

So what do you do when your hope gets deferred?

1. You get heartsick.

2. You can pray fervently.

3. You can listen for God’s voice.

4. You can accept reality and find the good in it.

5. You can use your hardship for God’s glory.

6. You can believe that somewhere along your path, God will do something outrageously good for you.

God loves you and He wants to bless you. He wants you to experience joy. He knows you need hope in your life. The second part of Proverbs 13:12 says, “but a longing fulfilled is a tree of life.”

Where do we go from here?

1. Work through the steps of disappointment. When you get up each day this week, talk to God. Spend a few minutes alone with Him either in Proverbs or another passage of Scripture.

2. Create your own rock of remembrance. Remember one specific instance when God has been good to you.-Display the rock so that when people ask you can tell them the story.

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