I would like to thank Pastor Ryan De La Rosa for the contribution of this writing. He leads Marked Student Ministries. You can connect with him on Instagram at @ryanedelarosa.

Sometimes your future meets you in the place of your frustration.

Do you ever get frustrated? I’m not talking about being frustrated with work and people. I’m talking about the frustration that pushes you to give up, quit, or even lose yourself to that which you are getting frustrated with. 

Honestly if I could count the days I’d get frustrated, it would be probably would’ve given up already but every time I was on the brink of quitting, God stepped in and showed me what my future was going to be like. 

Sometimes our frustration is always a set up for our future to meet us where we’re at. Somehow God always needs to remind us where we’re going in order for us to keep going. 

There was someone in the Bible whom I’m sure was as frustrated and that was Elisha. We read in 1 Kings 19:19-21, especially in verse 19:

“So he departed from there and found Elisha the son of Shapat who was PLOWING WITH 12 YOKE of oxen in front of him and he was with the 12th. Elijah passed by him and cast his cloak upon him.” 

Crazy right? Elijah sees him in a position of frustration. Wouldn’t you be frustrated if all you had to do day and night is push a plow? It’s amazing to know that out of nowhere Elijah drops his new future on him, God’s will on him, the new mantle over him, his next step in life, and his new position for the Kingdom of God. Don’t you just love it when God does crazy things like that? 

Can I encourage you with this truth? Your future isn’t as far as you think it is. If we read in the previous verses, God told Elijah who he needed to be looking for, his name, and his assignment. 

You see friends, Heaven is trying to find you. God, the creator of the heavens and the earth, has already whispered who you are and what you will be doing. Not to you per se, but Heaven knows who you are and so does the enemy. If Heaven hasn’t found you, then Hell has kept you. I rather be kept by God than be found by the enemy. Don’t allow your places of frustration to give room for addictions, curses, mindsets, or seeds of the enemy to be planted in your life. 

“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 NIV

God didn’t make a mistake creating you, He knew almost every situation you’d ever be in and that my friends is the power of our Lord. He knows our end and our beginnings. God has already planned out the best path for us. “But Ryan, I am frustrated. You have no idea how much or how bad I want to give up. It isn’t fair!” Nothing is fair in life. Usually the things that seem unfair to people are usually the ones who have more favor in their life than anybody else. You just haven’t been able to step in it yet. Here are some practical ways to help you in your season of frustration that I’ve been able to walk through: 

1. Be faithful in the field of your frustration.

No matter how frustrated you are, be faithful to God and only God. Remember who you are doing this for. It isn’t about who is on the left or on the right, but it’s to bring glory to His name and His name alone. This isn’t about you and it never will be about you. If you want to make it about you then step aside, friend. Let someone else carry the mantle for His kingdom. (Colossians 3:23)

2. PUSH YOUR PLOW! 

Whatever your season of frustration has given you, push it! If it’s a broom to sweep, push it. If it’s a computer to run, push it. If it’s patience for someone who annoys you, push it! If it’s greeting people, push it! If it’s hosting people, push it! If it’s taking orders and being wise with your decisions, push it! No matter how bad it gets, friends, push your plow! Your plow is an indication that whatever you’re working on or whatever you are doing, God sees you! He sees the sweat. He sees the tears. He sees the blood you shed and the tiresome hours you give toward life, your job, or even ministry. PUSH YOUR PLOW! YOUR FUTURE IS ABOUT TO FIND YOU. 

3. Don’t say “NO” to your mantles. 

You’re going to get new opportunities every day. You’re going to have to push new plows. You’re going to face new challenges. You’re going to have to find yourself again being faithful in new fields. Don’t ever say “NO” to something new. You see, every time you decide to be apart of what God wants, He’s going to challenge you to be in a different position and different season. Each season will look different, however, you’re going to encounter frustration. Mantles, I believe, are new positions and new opportunities for your life. I believe that we miss out on our future that God has for us is because we drop the mantle of the season we’re currently in. We don’t see all of God so we stay stuck there. Every frustrating season has a new mantle approaching. Therefore, be patient because something new is already around the corner. 

4. BURN your PLOW. 

Before Elisha could set on his journey, he ended up having to go and burn the thing he once knew which was plowing the field. Before you step into a new season, always burn the plow of the old season. What does that mean? Close old habits, old doors, and old relationships that never served purpose to your future. Close addictions and close your past before it follows you into your present and in your future. If we don’t burn our past, we’ll be so quick to go back to doing what we never liked to do. We stay comfortable. God never asked for you to be comfortable. He’s always challenging us to grow in our faith towards Him. Burn that addiction, burn that toxic relationship (not literally), burn the very thing that caused your frustration, and trust God for the new future he placed over you. 

Friends, always remember that every season of frustration has a season of new mantles, new opportunities, and new futures. Learn to be faithful in those seasons and see God do the work that nobody else would see. 

With Love,

– Ryan De La Rosa