Good Monday Morning Y'all! So, God did it again. Last night at youth, guess what the topic of discussion was? Truth. Mike, our associate youth pastor, spoke about ripping off our masks and letting our true identities show. Sounds pretty familiar doesn't it?
As much as I could write a whole post about that part of the truth, I feel like we've already talked about it and since I only have two more weeks to tell the truth, I figured I would go in a slightly different direction today. It does relate to one of the first truths we discussed, but it's still different, honest. :)
I'd like to talk about expectations.
Expectations we put on ourselves. Expectations we put on others. I've been told that I put a lot of expectation into people. I expect them to deliver. To be great and honest and loving. My husband especially...I wouldn't have married him if I didn't believe that he had all of these qualities. But, when I put those qualities on his shoulders like a rain cloud, the expectation to be a great husband gets too heavy and he becomes frustrated with himself. And, that's not good.
I think the root of those expectations comes from my inner-most desire to be the best I can be (Truth #15). If I am striving to be the best, shouldn't others around me? But, is life really about being the best? Who are we better than? Because of my own expectations of the way society should be, I make it into a contest and if I'm not the winner, that means I'm the loser. That doesn't sit so well.
So, are we not supposed to expect? Not have great expectations for our careers, our families, our lives? No, I don't believe that's accurate. For our monthly memory verse, we are memorizing Psalm 5:3 (it's totally okay if you don't remember it, I'm still learning it myself!):
In the morning, O Lord, you hear my voice; in the morning I lay my requests before you and wait in expectation.
David, the author of this psalm, clearly says in this passage that he is asking God for requests and is waiting expectantly for an answer. If David was living in today's society, he would want that answer sent to his iPhone instantly. I think a key word here is "wait." This word means so much to me right now. Currently, Raleigh and I are in a state of waiting. We aren't sure if a certain prayer has been answered or if we should continue to be praying that prayer for an answer. We understand that sometimes the answer to a prayer is no but we don't feel 100% positive that no is the right answer for this prayer. Maybe it is....but I have expectations that it isn't.
Because, you see, David tells us to give God the desires of our hearts (Psalm 37:4). He tells us to trust in God because our God that we are praying to has an ear to listen and He delights to be in communion with us through prayer and meditation. These practices grow us closer to our Lord. I have great expectations for what God can do out of any situation and I have these expectations through my faith. One of the commentaries that I read with this passage says, *"We believe that the God we pray to is a King, and a God. King of kings and God of gods; but that is not enough: the most commanding encouraging principle of prayer, and the most powerful or prevailing plea in prayer, is to look upon him as our King and our God, to whom we lie under peculiar obligations and from whom we have peculiar expectations."
I think one thing that we, as humans, have to realize with our expectations is this: we can't expect those around us to be God. Our husbands, our bosses, our families & friends - all these people that we put our expectations on - all live in sin. They disappoint us. They don't live up to what we expected them to be. But, neither do we. I am sure that Raleigh had certain expectations of what a wife should be and I clearly don't meet some of those qualifications. But guess what...he loves me anyway. He loves me because Christ loves us.
It's okay to not be the best, to not be perfect, to not always live up to the expectations. If we put our expectations in Christ, all of our needs will be met. It says so in Philippians 4:19,
And my God will meet all your needs according to his glorious riches in Christ Jesus
Now, hear me on this. Hear me loud and clear. It says that our God will meet all of our needs, not wants. And, he very well might meet our needs differently than we (you guessed it) expected. I love what Paul says in Galatians 1:15-16:
But when God, who set me apart from my mother’s womb and called me by his grace, was pleased to reveal his Son in me so that I might preach him among the Gentiles, my immediate response was not to consult any human being.
Let's focus on the word reveal for a second. The Greek word for reveal is "apokalupto" which means to disclose, to bring to light. God gave Paul the light of Christ - His Truth. I believe that God wants to reveal his Truth to all of us too. He wants to reveal what we so desperately expect.
I still believe it's okay to expect great things. Instead of expecting these things from the sin of this world, I choose to expect great things from the Truth given to me through Christ.
Till next time, let your light shine!
*Quote taken from Matthew Henry Commentary. http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=psalm%205:3&version=NIV1984
Truth #1 – The Truth
Truth #2 – I hate laundry
Truth #3 – I’m bad at memorization
Truth #4 – My dogs drive me crazy
Truth #5 – I’m scared at getting in trouble
Truth #6 – I was nervous to start N2S
Truth #7 – I like to dance
Truth #8 – I enjoy a simple life
Truth #10 -I love a clean closet
Truth #11 – I am never satisfied with me
Truth #12 – I have a short temper
Truth #13 – I love things
Truth #14 – I sew to make memories
Truth #15 - How I define success