If I had a nickel for every time my expectations have gotten me into trouble…
I’m a Anne of Green Gables and Hallmark Hall of Fame girl all the way! There’s nothing wrong with that, except when it creates rock solid expectations. And when those expectations aren’t met, it creates dissatisfaction and can lead to bitterness. More importantly, expectations can become an idol. You can be so fixated on them that you ignore the voice of God directing you another way.
I’m not just talking about over all or “big picture” expectations. I’m talking about every day expectations as well. Like, how a particular vacation should go. Or, what a class I teach should be like. Or, what a teacher for a class my children take should act. Or, what job I should have. Or, what my day should look like.
Let’s look at an example. What if I have my list of errands for the day all planned out…library, grocery store, pick up a movie, run by the church, back home. Well, let’s say my car breaks down somewhere in the midst of those errands. That just wasn’t penciled in on my agenda. Now, I have to drop everything and head to the mechanic. By now, I’m a mess. I’m cranky and everybody knows I’m not a happy camper. This is just not how I expected my day to turn out. But, what if this is exactly what God wanted for my day. Maybe He orchestrated the car trouble to get me to sit down beside someone in the mechanic’s waiting room who really needed a listening ear today.
I want to challenge you (and me) to get rid of expectations. If you look at the header on this blog, you will see the catch phrase, “striving to live where I’m planted.” Sometimes within that garden, flowers pop up that I had no idea were going to be there. I’m trying to learn to live in the moment, trusting God with all my uncertainties, and not limiting Him with my expectations.
Psalm 62:5, My soul, wait in silence for God only, For my hope is from Him. (NASB)