Recently I had an acute attack of disappointment. It wasn't anything to grieve over, just one of those occasions when every plan seemed to fall through. My wife and I had made arrangements to drive into a city some one hundred miles away to see my favorite baseball team play a game. We juggled other plans to allow for this once-a-year event, and had reservations to spend the night in that city.
It rained lightly in the afternoon, but the evening provided excellent baseball weather. As we rounded the bend toward the stadium, I noticed that the lights weren't shining. My heart sank as we discovered that the game had been canceled because the field was soggy. This seldom happens unless there has been extremely heavy rain for several days.
As we drove off, I attempted to comfort myself with a series of humanly reasonable arguments. I thought: ''Well, there's nothing you can do about that field. . . . What's done is done. Forget it! . . . There'll be other ball games. . . . Maybe it wouldn't have been a good game anyway. . . . You're an adult; things like this shouldn't get to you.''
After an hour of such reasoning I was still feeling quite disappointed. I knew it was time to abandon human reasoning and argument for spiritual reasoning. Through the study of Christian Science, I have learned that any situation, when prayerfully considered, can be used as an opportunity to learn something about God. I have seen many times that when I exercise the discipline and humility to turn to God for deeper understanding, a blessing is always forthcoming.
My prayerful reasoning went like this: ''Has divine Love, God, ceased providing me with harmony? No. God is giving me, as His offspring, uninterrupted joy, peace, and dominion. Am I vulnerable to chance? No. I am subject only to God's government. I need not and will not consent to the control of anything but infinite good, God.''
During this particular week I had been pondering a passage in the Christian Science textbook by Mary Baker Eddy, the Discoverer and Founder of Christian Science. The passage is this: ''When man gives up his belief in death, he will advance more rapidly towards God, Life, and Love.'' n1 It occurred to me that I was believing in the death (or temporary termination) of joy and goodness. I realized that there could be no death, no break, in God's provision of good for His loved creation, including me.
n1 Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, p. 430.
The more I held to this truth of the unceasing unity of God and man, the less disappointment I felt. Soon my normal joy and gratitude returned and I was healed. The next day it was obvious to me that the two lessons I learned from this experience - that spiritual reasoning heals what human reasoning only covers over, and that one cannot really be separated from the harmonious presence of God - were far more enjoyable and satisfying than any ball game could have been.
Christ Jesus, our loved Master, once assured his disciples, ''Your joy no man taketh from you.'' n2 No person or circumstance has the prerogative or power to deprive us of our divinely bestowed happiness. As God's eternal creation, man is not vulnerable or receptive to the evil suggestion that good has somehow died.
n2 John 16:22.
Disappointment has no home in the one who clings faithfully to the omnipresence of God's loving government. His tender care is the fact of being, which can never be reversed or thwarted. The belief that God is inactive or unloving can be thoroughly purged from thought as we agree with the spiritual facts of existence. Whatever the disappointment, it can be cast off as no part of God's creation. DAILY BIBLE VERSE The Lord is very pitiful, and of tender mercy. James 5:11