Have you ever faced disappointment over something that didn’t go the way you planned? Have you ever wanted something so badly but were unable to obtain it? More than likely the answer is “Yes.” Life, along with its great joys, is sometimes filled with moments of disappointment. It is our response to setbacks that determines our ability to overcome them and move forward. A wise person said that life is 10% of what happens to us, and 90% of how we respond to it. It is much easier to move past negative experiences with a bright, optimistic attitude.

In my lifetime, I’ve been known to obsess over certain things that I thought were vital to my happiness--things like the having latest gadget or some trendy, designer outfit that I really could not afford. Even certain relationships, that eventually went sour, provided a false sense of security on which I based my well-being. Looking back, I realize that, had certain doors not been shut, I would have missed even greater opportunities down the road.

I can recall a potentially devastating experience in my early 20s that turned out to be a blessing in disguise. Right after graduating from college, I applied for a job, which seemed to perfectly match my interests and skills. I left the interview feeling confident that I would be hired, and had started mentally preparing myself to begin working for the company. I envisioned myself gradually moving up the corporate ladder and being very successful. However, my enthusiasm quickly waned when I learned that someone else had been hired for the position. Naturally, I felt very discouraged at first. I spent a lot of time asking God, “Why didn’t that work out like I hoped?” or “What could I have done differently to change the outcome of that situation?” Nevertheless, I mustered up enough confidence to look for work elsewhere. Eventually, I accepted another job that was less desirable than the one I really wanted. After a while, though, I grew to love my work. Although difficult at times, it became extremely rewarding. About six months into my new career, I got the news that the company to which I originally applied went broke, and shut its doors after nearly twenty-five years. All of its employees were suddenly left without jobs. It occurred to me, that, had I been hired at that company, I would be in the same predicament. I immediately became aware of the blessing behind that closed door.

If you look closely enough, you can likely find some instances in which a missed opportunity worked to your advantage. Perhaps it was the loss of a job that gave you the freedom to pursue a lifelong dream or a more satisfying career. Maybe it was getting “bumped” from an overbooked flight only to be upgraded to a first-class seat on the next. Or maybe it was ending a bad relationship that provided the chance to meet someone more compatible. Some setbacks are really set-ups for even greater things ahead!

When disappointment comes it is natural to feel discouraged. But spending too much time lamenting over what could have been robs you of time and energy that can be better spent enjoying life. Make a decision to look for the blessings behind closed doors. Sometimes they are not visible right away, but know that God has great things in store for you according to His Word:

“For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” -Jeremiah 29:11

There IS a blessing behind every closed door. You must earnestly seek it.

Author's Bio: 

Stephanie Lyas is Founder & President of OptimaLife Solutions- a company that provides traditional and faith-based life coaching and counseling services, as well as inspirational media products. Her passion is helping people create the optimal life that they want and deserve. She is a highly effective workshop facilitator and passionate motivational speaker. Stephanie is also the author of hundreds of inspirational literary works, and is a contributing writer for LifeToolsforWomen.com and Reflections Magazine.

Visit her websites at http://www.optimalifesolutions.com and http://www.stephanielyas.com.