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  • Writer's pictureThe Bridge of Inspiration

Day 17 Expectations

Is it good or bad to have expectations? We all have them in people or situations, but sometimes we expect people to keep us happy when it’s not their job. The definition of expectations is; a belief that someone will or should achieve something. And when they don’t, we get upset or frustrated with them. In all honesty, in keeping things balanced, we need to expect good things to happen and accept them when they don’t. Because not everything is supposed to work out the way we expect it to. That’s when lessons are learned, and our belief is strengthened. Even in Jesus’s day, people expected certain things to happen, and when they didn’t, it affected the rest of their lives.

Before Jesus, the Jews were ruled by the Romans. Many expected the Messiah to be a military figure who would fight the Romans for them. Other Jews were expecting a prophet like Moses. The Jewish people wanted to return to the glory days under their greatest ruler, King David. So Jesus was totally unexpected in their eyes.

Why were they expecting a warrior savior? Here’s what it says in Numbers 24:17-19 Balaam spoke to king Bakala, who asked him to curse the Israelites. Instead, he blessed them three times. Among other things he said to the king:

“I see him, but not now; I behold him, but not near. A star will come out of Jacob;

a scepter will rise out of Israel. He will crush the foreheads of Moab, the skulls of all the people of Sheth. Edom will be conquered; Seir, his enemy, will be conquered, but Israel will grow strong. A ruler will come out of Jacob and destroy the survivors of the city.” They were expecting a warrior, someone that would come in and take charge. They were not expecting a loving, kind, gentle-hearted man like Jesus Christ who would humbly go to his death for our sins.

Don’t get me wrong, having expectations is a good thing, but when we get so focused on what we expect, and it doesn’t work out the way our minds think it should, we don’t understand, just like what John the Baptist went through. He saw the Spirit descend from heaven like a dove on Jesus when he baptized him. He heard God say, “This is my Son, whom I love; with him, I am well pleased.” He witnessed this amazing exchange between Jesus and God. Yet, years later, as he sat in prison, John’s expectations hadn’t been met. And when expectations aren’t met, doubt comes in. It’s almost like John the Baptist was saying if Jesus was really the Messiah, why wouldn’t he come to get me out of prison. Why hasn’t he saved us all? He questioned what he already knew because it wasn’t what he expected.

In the end, Jesus was the warrior for us all. It says in Ephesians 4:8 in the Living Bible translation, The psalmist tells about this, for he says that when Christ returned triumphantly to heaven after his resurrection and victory over Satan, he gave generous gifts to men. Jesus was victorious, but he went about it in a totally different way than what people expected.

Yes, it’s good to have expectations, but we must be careful to realize it doesn’t always work out the way we expect. I can’t speak for you, but my expectations always have a surprise ending. I guess you can say it’s a lesson in having faith that things will work out somehow instead of expecting them to work out the way we want them to. God has his own plans, and usually, things work out even better his way. Trusting in God’s ways can help us keep our expectations in check because His ways are so, much higher than ours. So, instead of being frustrated when things don’t work out as expected, remember to trust that God has a plan and we just don’t know what it is yet.

Let's pray:

Dear Heavenly Father, thank you, Lord, for all we expect and do not expect in this life. Thank you that we may understand that sometimes the unexpected is better for us than what we anticipated to happen. Thank you, Lord, for always being with us and guiding us through all the troubled and fun times in our lives. When we simply trust in you for everything, the unexpected isn't so hard to go through. We know you are our guiding light. In Jesus Holy name we pray. Amen.

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