Friday, April 10, 2009

Re-Examining My Expectations

Why can't people just put their turn signal on and think about somebody else for a change?!” That was the recent headline in my brain that sparked a whole series of interesting thoughts and eventually, a new perspective.

I consider myself a generally considerate and courteous person. In the past, I have often found myself puzzled and frustrated when others neglect (what I would consider) even basic courtesies. For example, simple things like holding a door open a moment longer for the person following them into a building, expecting that items in a parked car will be safe and not stolen, counting on others to tell the truth, and of course putting a turn signal on so other drivers know what to expect. Unfortunately, I'm beginning to realize my expectations of the world are too high.

Jesus says:
“In the world you will have troubles, but I give you my peace.”

Part of this peace is understanding that the world will not live up to the “do to others as you would have them do to you” expectations that God commands. Worldly, or carnal wisdom says to look out for number one first. Selfishness is always the natural tendency, unless a Godly wisdom is introduced and applied.

“As for you, you were dead in your transgressions and sins, in which you used to live when you followed the ways of this world and of the ruler of the kingdom of the air, the spirit who is now at work in those who are disobedient. All of us also lived among them at one time, gratifying the cravings of our sinful nature and following its desires and thoughts. Like the rest, we were by nature objects of wrath.” (Ephesians 2:1-3)

“That is to be expected” is the new phrase and perspective that I have about the world’s behavior. Although I don't agree, and will try to assert a Godly influence and show a different example with my life, my expectations are now lower for those who are outside of God’s Kingdom. It has given me a new grace and compassion. It has also given me another viewpoint of how large of a gap there is between God’s ways and the ways of this world.

"For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways," declares the LORD. (Isaiah 55:8)

It’s not that we are accepting their behavior (certainly not!), but just realizing that it is the world’s “default setting." Don't get me wrong, my own behavior, attitudes and actions are not always optimum. However, I know that God will finish the work He has started in me! My hope is in the Lord and I have great expectations of Him. I know He is trustworthy and is making all things work out for my good. Let’s consider in our own lives who we may have expectations of who didn't agree to or cannot meet them. The world cannot meet God’s expectations, nor do they understand that they need to (yet). Pray for those around you that they will have a new revelation of God’s love for them and of His glorious purpose and plan for their lives.

Guest post by Krista Dunk of Koinonia Business Women.


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