EXPECTATIONS MUST BE :
- BASED ON GOD’S WORD
- NOT ON WISHFUL THINKING
- NOT ON PREDICTING RESULTS OF YOUR EFFORTS
- NOT ON HEARTFELT DESIRES FOR THE OTHER PERSON
….OTHERWISE, OUR LIFE WILL BE FILLED WITH HUGE DISAPPOINTMENTS, ONE RIGHT AFTER THE OTHER. BUT, IF OUR EXPECTATIONS ARE BIBLICAL, WE CAN APPROACH EACH DAY WITH JOY, PEACE, AND THE EXPECTATION THAT GOD WILL BRING US THROUGH VICTORIOUSLY.
1. EXPECTATIONS OF OURSELVES.
A. DON’T HAVE EXPECTATIONS OF OURSELVES THAT MAKE US GREATER THAN OTHERS. ANY GOOD THING IN US COMES FROM GOD ANYWAY.
Romans 12:3 For I say, through the grace given unto me, to every man that is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think; but to think soberly, according as God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith.
–BE REALISTIC, HONEST. GOD GAVE YOU GIFTS. ACKNOWLEDGE THEM TO BE FROM HIM. YOU CAN’T BE PROUD ABOUT WHAT SOMEONE ELSE DID. SO, GIVE GLORY AND THANKS TO GOD. The Holy Spirit ties together what a person thinks of themselves with their faith.
B. HAVE EXPECTATIONS THAT YOU WILL BE GETTING BETTER AND WILL BE GROWING IN THE LORD.
ARE YOU RIGHTEOUS ? THEN, YOU KNOW THAT WHAT IS UP AHEAD IS GOOD.
Proverbs 11:23 The desire of the righteous is only good: but the expectation of the wicked is wrath.
YOU HAVE A POSITIVE OUTLOOK ON WHAT IS AHEAD.
–MUST HAVE FAITH IN YOUR EXPECTATIONS. BUT, WHAT IS FAITH ? IS IT SOMETHING YOU MAKE UP, OR IS IT BASED UPON THE FACTS THAT GOD SETS BEFORE YOU AND SAYS, “TAKE, EAT.”
C. HAVING AN EXPECTATION ABOUT YOUR HEALTH.
PAUL ALREADY HAD SEVERAL PHYSICAL PROBLEMS. YET, HE HAD EXPECTATION THAT ALL WOULD WORK FOR THE GLORY OF GOD.
Philippians 1:20 According to my earnest expectation and my hope, that in nothing I shall be ashamed, but that with all boldness, as always, so now also Christ shall be magnified in my body, whether it be by life, or by death.
2. EXPECTATIONS OF THE LOST AND THE WILLINGLY BACKSLIDDEN.
WHY HAVE EXPECTATIONS OF THE LOST ? DID JESUS COME HERE EXPECTING THAT THE WHOLE WORLD WOULD FOLLOW HIM ? NO. DID THE APOSTLES TRAVEL THE WORLD EXPECTING THAT ALL PEOPLE WOULD FOLLOW JESUS ? NO. YOU PRESENT THE GOSPEL, PRAY FOR PEOPLE, AND WAIT ON THEM TO RESPOND. YOU DON’T KNOW THEIR ACTIONS, IF THEY WILL OR NOT. Don’t anticipate that they will respond in the way you want them to.
–MANY TIMES PEOPLE EXPECT SMART PEOPLE TO GET SAVED WHEN CONFRONTED WITH THE FACTS. SOME SMART PEOPLE WHO THINK THAT THEIR HUMAN KNOWLEDGE IS ENOUGH TO UNDERSTAND AND KNOW GOD SHOULD NOT BE EXPECTED TO TRUST GOD. THEY FIRST HAVE TO COME TO REALITY.
Proverbs 26:12 Seest thou a man wise in his own conceit? there is more hope of a fool than of him.
3. EXPECTATION OF GOD.
SOME PEOPLE THINK THEY CAN STUDY THE BIBLE AS AN ORDINARY BOOK, AND UNDERSTAND GOD AND ALL HIS PLANS. THIS IS NOT TRUE. GOD IS GREATER THAN OUR ABILITY TO COMPREHEND ALL OF GOD. SO, WE TAKE WHAT HE GIVES US, AND COMPREHEND HIS WORD THROUGH THE TEACHING OF HIS SPIRIT. IF WE COULD STUDY GREEK AND HEBREW AND KNOW ALL ABOUT THE BIBLE AND WHAT IT TEACHES, THEN SMART PEOPLE WOULD ALL BE CHRISTIANS. BUT, THEY AREN’T. Dr. Mortimer Adler, (a student of Dr. Sigmund Freud) after he came to Christ at the age of 82 said, “What’s the point of revelation if we could figure it out ourselves? If it were wholly comprehensible, then it would just be another philosophy.”
A. WE MUST DEPEND UPON GOD, NOT INTELLECT, TO BRING US TO HIM.
Psalms 62:5 My soul, wait thou only upon God; for my expectation is from Him.
IT IS HARD FOR SOME PEOPLE TO TAKE AWAY EXPECTATIONS OF OTHER PEOPLE, AND PLACE ALL EXPECTATION UPON GOD. IT IS A PROCESS THAT FOR SOME TAKES A VERY LONG TIME. BUT, WE MUST TRY !
B. GOD HAS A SPECIFIC END GOAL IN MIND FOR YOU.
Jeremiah 29:11 For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the LORD, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end.
–GOD’S PLAN IS FOR YOU TO BE HOLY AND RIGHTEOUS AND AN EXAMPLE TO OTHERS.
Ephesians 5:27 That He might present it to Himself a glorious Church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish.
–GOD MADE PLANS FOR YOU TO BE SAVED. BUT, HE KNEW THAT SOME WOULD NOT, AND THAT IS WHY HE MADE HELL. AND HE KNEW THAT SOME WOULD, AND THAT IS WHY HE CREATED A PLACE IN HEAVEN SO THEY COULD BE WITH HIM IN JOY FOR ETERNITY.
2 Peter 3:9 The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.
C. EXPECT GOD TO DO SOMETHING FOR US.
IT IS HIS DESIRE TO HELP US, TO MAKE US CLEAN, GIVING US VICTORIES.
Acts 3:5 And he gave heed unto them, expecting to receive something of them.
D. EXPECTING YOUR ENEMIES TO BE DEFEATED.
JESUS SET THE EXAMPLE FOR OUR OWN ATTITUDES TOWARD LIFE. WE SHOULD EXPECT THE ENEMIES TO BE DEFEATED WHEN WE HAVE FAITH IN THE LORD JESUS.
Hebrews 10:13 From henceforth expecting till His enemies be made His footstool.
A Bible Study with Dr. Ed J. MacWilliams