Eliminating Expectations

So, a couple weekends ago Jourdan and i went for a carriage ride in downtown Greenfield. Jourdan had been talking about it for a couple weeks, and we were both excited and had built these expectations in our minds that it would be a fun, cozy ride around all the light displays downtown. However, our expectations were replaced by reality. Instead of this image we’d built in our minds…

we ended up waiting for an hour in the cold just to ride.  We had to share a carriage with another couple we’d never met. The ride lasted maybe 15 minutes, and rather than traveling around downtown, we rode around a random block of houses that did not have any Christmas lights put up.

As I replayed the evening in my mind, I was reminded of how expectations can really let you down. So often I have expectations of how my life is going to look/of how my life is going to turn out. And when the reality turns out very different from these images I’ve drawn up in my head, I get disappointed. Not only that, but often I will put expectations on others, and then when they don’t meet these ideas that I’ve come up with, I get frustrated with them.

But, maybe it’s time that we tame our expectations and we start looking at things with new lenses.

Recently, I think God’s been breaking me of all expectations. We aren’t guaranteed anything in this life. We aren’t promised a cookie cutter life, but if I’m honest with myself, I don’t desire a cookie cutter life. I want my life to leak God. When someone looks into my life, I want them to see God’s fingerprints everywhere. In order for that to happen, I have to trust. So much easier said than done. Trusting God can be so painful. Trusting God takes you on a journey that involves a lot of waiting and confusion and uncertainty. I like to have a plan. I like to know what’s going to happen. I like control. I often find myself saying, ‘Ok Lord, I can handle this pain or this stress, or this uncertainty for an immeasurable amount of time, as long as I know that in the end it’ll be okay, or it’ll be what I want.’ But that is not how it works. 1) What I want doesn’t always align with what God wants. 2) That’s not really trust.

By waiting in the hard, and sitting in the confusion, I’m showing God that I know His ways are best and that I may think I know what’s best for me, but in all reality I know God has my best in mind. After all, He’s the creator of the universe and He loves me. He chooses me. He washes me with grace. He pursues me. By knowing those things about God, how can I not rest in the fact that He wants to give me good things. He does. He wants to give all of us good things.

If you’re in a time of waiting, a time of confusion, or a time of trust, I encourage you to constantly remind yourself who God is and rest in the fact that He desires to bless us. He loves us and has our best in mind. I’m trying to rest in that today. I’m stripping away all my expectations and resting in God’s goodness even when it hurts, and even when I’m confused. With no expectations, even the littlest things can bring the greatest joy.

“You make all things new,

You make all things new,

You turn the bitter into sweet,

The bitter into sweet

The bitter into sweet

The winter into spring.”

 

 

2 Comments

  1. Great reminder. Thank you Spirit for poking me again.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Nikki, I so resonate with this. It was beautifully written and straight from the heart. My pastor always says, “It’s not about changing our circumstances (which we often can’t even when we want to), but allowing God to shift our perspective in the midst of the circumstances.” Frustrations come from unmet expectations (even realistic ones!), so rather than trying to force a situation to meet that expectation, maybe it’s about realigning our expectations with God’s heart and seeking out His truth in the midst of the frustration. I have been learning this a ton lately- in the big and the small things. Thanks for sharing this ❤

    Liked by 1 person

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