In speaking to Hillsong Church of Noosa yesterday, Global Senior Pastor, Brian Houston, shared about expectations. Though I do not subscribe fully to the teachings and practises of the group, I do appreciate the insights shared from time to time. Here are some personal thoughts about expectations.
"God wants us to live our lives expectant." B.H
- To live a purposed life is to live an expectant life. Romans 12:2 talks about proving what God's good, acceptable, and perfect will is for our lives. This talks of a progression in one's life, of an adventure. It talks about living our lives in a developing way. Discovering all that is good, moving on to what is more acceptable, until we reach that perfect spot, that perfect state God so desires for us to take hold of or accomplish in this life for His glory and for our blessedness.
"At times, expectation can be a self-fulfilling prophecy. Low or no expectation is just sad. It's sad for a christian to just roll out with each day and week as it comes." B.H
- Some may call this "conditioning"; you prepare yourself to doing something by making yourself believe you can and will be able to do it. Others simply see this as an act of "hyping" oneself. However you see it, fact is, the mind holds great power in the management of one's affairs. In your mind, thoughts steer you into positivity or despondency. In the mind, failure or achievement can already be decided before any act begins. With one thought, your mind can set you up to do great things for God. 2 Corinthians 10:5 knows about the wars that go on in our minds and reminds us to take captive every thought. We are to take down any thoughts and arguments that are un-God and unprofitable in our lives. We are to get a hold of our thought life, and make it obedient to Christ.
"Let not expectation come from anyone or anything else but God alone. Your expectation should not come from God and this... but, just God alone."B.H
- A parallel verse consideration of Psalm 62:5 shows these variations:
Patiently wait for God alone, my soul! For he is the one who gives me confidence. (NET)
My soul, wait thou only upon God; for my expectation is from him. (King James)
- God is the one who can and does make things happen. In Isaiah 55:11, God says that the word that goes out from His mouth will not return to empty. His word will accomplish what He desires and achieve the purpose for which He sent it. Now, with a God like that, why would we need to anchor our expectations and hopes on other things and people who can never measure up. Even the best intentions from the people we love and respect can come short of delivery. Only in God is our full security. He will promote and protect that which is best for His children.
"Who we believe God is will determine what we believe God does."B.H
- God is as big as our perception of Him.
- My knowledge and understanding of God determines His greatness in my life.
- You cannot trust someone you know nothing about. You can never gauge a person's capability without having insight into his identity and personhood. In this light, we understand that it is crucial for us to know the God we worship and pin our hopes onto. It is unhealthy to stay a blind, ignorant follower; and God wouldn't want us to. In Proverbs 8:17, God says that He just loves those who seek Him and those who seek Him, will truly find Him. Philippians 3:10 shares that in knowing Christ, we gain understanding and appropriation of the power of His resurrection. Knowing God is key to an overcoming life. Knowing God is key to trusting Him with all the issues that go on in our lives. When we know Him, we entrust more to Him. When we entrust more to Him, we rely less on ourselves. When we rely less on ourselves and more on God, we screw life less! We live right more because we have certainty that God's plans for us are for our good, to give us a hope, a future. And this certainty, this life of rightness, is sustained as we keep getting to know God, communing with Him, seeking Him.