Whew! The last few weeks have been a whirlwind! I don’t know about y’all but from my viewpoint, January has flown by! Just like that and it’s time to decorate for Valentine’s Day!
If you read parts one and two of the “Great Expectations” blog I hope you’ve taken some time to reflect upon your own expectations and exactly what that means to you. As I’ve dug into the subject myself, especially in light of my word (and commitment) for the year to be intentional, I’ve pondered over my own attitudes, circumstances, beliefs and thoughts.
Let’s take a look at the Merriam-Webster definition for expectation:
— the act or state of looking forward to some occurrence
And a few synonyms: Anticipation , contemplation, expectance, expectancy, prospect
And lastly, some related words: Alarm, apprehension, dread, foreboding, misgiving
There are several words within that definition that resonate deep within me – but mostly I hang onto “looking forward” as I think about what God has in store for me and how I aspire to live my life.
I have intentionally set out to read the Bible in its entirety this year. From start to finish – Genesis to Revelation. Every Word. Every Page. While I’ve read the Bible in parts since I was a young girl, this is the first time I’ve determined to read it cover-to-cover with a deliberate action plan.
I’m using a Bible App on my phone and am really enjoying the format which includes a thorough devotion along with supporting scripture for each day. Transparently, I have always struggled with the family tree lineage in the Old Testament. Keeping up with all those folks and their wives and kids makes my head spin – and honestly, it’s just tough not to skip right over the genealogy parts. What I’m discovering however, is how beautifully and wonderfully it all fits together. My expectation is beginning to evolve from bore to excitement as the individuals and their stories come alive with each new day of reading.
He’s changing my expectations. And my intentions. And my motivations. And Lord knows I need an attitude adjustment on many days! I’ve asked Him to work on me and I expect Him to do great things – not because of who I am or what I do but because of who He is!
And through all of this – as I continue to be a work-in-progress, I’m learning some very cool truths:
**It’s good to have expectations, it is. It’s even ok to have great expectations if they are realistic and vetted through what’s legal, moral, ethical and for me – within His will and plan.
But here’s the really good stuff:
**Sometimes (or maybe often for some of us), when we least expect a blessing, an answered prayer, a turnaround relationship, a __________________ that’s when we are receive it!
He just wants us. All of us.
He gave Himself. And His Son.
Like anyone else reading this – or on the face of the earth – I have stuff to deal with – personal issues, family concerns, work obligations… life is full of – stuff…right!?! Over the years I have placed expectations (sometimes realistic, often not) upon myself and others and I have finally come to the realization that the greatest expectation that I can ever have is that of trust.
It’s really pretty simple. If I believe and TRUST what His Word says and I choose to obey His Word, I can GREATLY expect Him to do GREAT things in my life and the lives of my loved ones! And that, my friends, is the greatest expectation of all expectations!
I’ve never read Great Expectations by Charles Dickens (in case you were wondering). But I can tell you that God sure did use the decorative “fake book” that caught my attention in Hobby Lobby a few weeks ago. And it all started with my OCD-gotta-get-the-Christmas décor out of the attic NOW-self barreling down a set of stairs and knocking a picture off the wall.
The things our Father will do to get our attention, to speak to us, to use us…..continues to amaze me!
I hope your greatest expectation(s) are grounded in Him and centered around His goodness. I pray you will dream big but trust bigger, plan smart but rest in His faithfulness.
#greatexpectations2018 it’s a wrap!