I have been thinking a lot about expectations lately. Specifically, I have been thinking about expectations I put on my kids and God. School is ramping up and they are old enough to have their own aspirations and calling. Admittedly, their dad and I also have ideas about their aspirations and calling. We, of course, want the best for them. We want them to have good paying jobs that uses their knowledge and skills. We want them to be leaders in their chosen fields. We want them to be “successful.”
Our oldest is beginning is college career while finishing his senior year of high school. We are doing our best to guide him. He is a talented musician who wants pursue a career in music. You can guess where this is going. Musicians fall in the struggling artist category. This didn’t exactly fit with our expectations. We love our son and want the best for him, so of course we want to control his life. We struggle thinking we know what is best for him.
I hold similar expectations of God. I love how God answered Isaac’s prayer. He got exactly what he wanted, and I want what I want.
Isaac prayed to the Lord on behalf of his wife, because she was childless. The Lord answered his prayer, and his wife Rebekah became pregnant. (Genesis 25:21 NIV).
I admit it. I have expectations of God just like I have expectations for my kids. In particular, I expect God to give me what I want. I expect God to heal those I love. I expect God to right wrongs. I expect God to keep my kids safe. I expect God… It has been easier to adjust my expectations of my children than my expectations of God. I get mad at Him when a loved one dies. I get mad at Him when my children hurt. I get mad at Him when my prayers aren’t answered with a resounding yes like Isaac and Rebekah received.
Thankfully, God understands my grief, frustration and struggles. He knows what my heart wants and He knows what is best. He sees the big picture. He sees the good that will come out of my grief. Trusting that becomes my challenge.
My comfort in my suffering is this: Your promise preserves my life. (Psalm 119:50 NIV).
I remind myself of God’s promises to comfort me, to never leave me. I remind myself of all the times God has exceeded my expectations such as my life with my husband and kids. I remind myself that this is a journey that doesn’t promise that I get everything I want. It’s a journey that promises that I will grow in Christlikeness. That I will grow in love and grace toward others. I am reminded that the expectations I hold aren’t always the best for me or my kids.
How are you with expectations? Do your’s need some adjustments? Share your experience here and breathe life and bring hope to others.