I think we’ve all been there. We’re hoping and praying for something – a boyfriend, a job, a ring, a baby, a home, the “all clear” medical result – and then we see somebody else get it. We know we should be happy for them and rejoice with those who rejoice (Romans 12:15). But it almost feels like you were robbed, even though we know just because she got it doesn’t mean we won’t one day. It hurts. It reminds us that we still don’t have that thing. And it also means that they aren’t in the same “club” anymore. You’re not both still struggling with it.
So what do you do when this happens, when your friend gets the thing that you’ve been praying for? I want to share some encouragement and hopefully some helpful tips for when you find yourself in this situation.
Speak truth to yourself
I know how easy it is to start having spiraling thoughts. First you’re just thinking about how she got a boyfriend and you still don’t, and next you’re thinking that God doesn’t love you as much as her. It is imperative that you take your thoughts captive (2 Corinthians 10:5) and speak truth to yourself. Google verses about what God says about you and your life. The truth will set you free.
Related: Does God Love Her More?
Remember that the grass isn’t always greener on the other side
I’m not discounting your desire or the beauty in an answered prayer, but just because someone gets what they are praying for doesn’t mean life will be complete and perfect. I think we know that, but it’s hard to believe when we’re still waiting and praying. Every single season has good and hard. They can coexist. There is good and hard in your season, and there is good and hard in her season. You just may never get to see the hard in her season, and maybe that’s okay.
Comparison is the thief of joy
This kind of goes off of the last point, but since when has comparison left you peaceful and joyful? It always leaves you feeling either prideful or bitter. Like in the first point, whenever you catch yourself starting to compare your life with somebody else’s, start speaking truth about yourself and your life. God has uniquely written your story and you get to live it out and make the most of it.
What is your purpose?
This is honestly such a big question, and one I could write an entire blog post (or even book) on. I think our overarching goals in this life are to seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness (Matthew 6:33), to love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, mind, and strength (Matthew 22:37), and to go out into all the world and preach the Gospel to every creature (Mark 16:15). That’s what we should be doing our whole lives. But then I think we also have specific purposes in different seasons of life. For example, right now I am called to be a faithful wife and a loving, God-honoring mom. When I was single, that wasn’t my purpose. I encourage you to pray about what your purpose is in this season, no matter your life circumstances or what you do or don’t have. Which brings me to my next point…
Prayer is more powerful than you think
I am the first to admit that I have discounted prayer in my life. I’ve pushed it to the back burner. If I have 5 spare minutes, I will always choose to read my Bible over praying. I’m not saying that reading your Bible isn’t important, but prayer is equally as important. Prayer helps you to intimately know God and His heart, as well as know His will. In Him you find the strength to be content, to make it though another day, and to find joy. And you find that strength through prayer. Don’t ever underestimate it, friend. Let it be your first line of defense.
Find the good in your life
Like I mentioned earlier, there is good and hard in every season. So what’s the good in your season, right now? What about that friend you get to sit next to in class? The fall leaves on your evening walk? That delicious meal you made last night? They can be big or small blessings, but try to be intentional about finding and being grateful for the good in your life.
Remember that God works all things together for your good and His glory
Maybe God has promised you what you have been praying for, and if so, that is beautiful. Keep the faith. But if He hasn’t, are you open to the fact that you may never receive it on this side of eternity? But that His plan is even better than what you have in mind? There have been times in my life when I am honestly glad that God didn’t give me what I prayed for. His plan was so much better and I can see that now. It may still hurt a little when you don’t get what you prayed for, but I hope you know that God works all things together for your good and His glory (Romans 8:28) and that the safest and most fulfilling place to be is in the center of His will.
I hope this post encourages you!
With all my love,