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Everything in life doesn’t go our way and we’re faced with many disappointments. But while these disappointments are important to us, they must be held with a proper perspective. And maturity reminds us we still have the responsibility to show up and practice love even when we don’t get what we want.

Kids are not known for their ability to handle disappointments. They’re all too quick to melt down, yell, or take their ball and leave when things don’t go their way. But as we grow so should our ability to tolerate life’s many let downs.

Tolerating doesn’t mean we just suck it up and pretend it doesn’t matter. To be sure, unmet desires matter to us even if they don’t to anyone else. Some longing in our heart was not fulfilled and this brings a measure of grief that should be rightly honored.

All the same, learning to tolerate means this grief no longer takes us out. We can be disappointed with a particular play, or call of the ref, without quitting or attempting to end the game for everyone else as well. Instead, we take the hit and keep showing up to play.

For instance, we won’t always get our way in marriage. But this is not an excuse to become demanding or resentful. We accept the reasonable give and take of every relationship and continue to seek the good of each other.

Likewise, we won’t always get the job, the house, social outcomes, or the like we desire, but even here we must handle our disappointments well. And simply being upset and expecting others to comply with our wishes does little good. The better choice is accepting this loss and then focusing on the choices we can make moving forward.

We remain childish and ineffective when we consistently let life’s disappointments get the best of us.

Grow in maturity by learning to accept the many disappointments of life without being deterred from your practice of love. This blesses everyone.

Photo by Tikkho Maciel on Unsplash

Dr. Corey Carlisle

Licensed marriage and family therapist and certified sex therapist - providing Christian counseling and soul care to individuals and couples, with a special emphasis on developing the masculine soul. Suwanee, GA 30024

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