Monday, 28 April 2014

Great Expectations

by Kath
Well, what did you expect? Ever heard that phrase? It usually has a negative connotation, meaning, "Did you really expect anything better from that person (company, store, product)?" What do we expect?
'Greatness leads to great expectations' was a slogan I heard recently on an ad on the telly. They were advertising a car, but I thoug
ht the slogan said a lot. It could say a lot, about all sorts of things.
What do we expect of certain products? Well, if it's a brand we know to be good, then we probably expect a lot, right? Toyota, Mitsubishi, Honda, Kelvinator, Breville, Janome, Schleich are all brands that mean something here - excellence, quality, reliability, style, good re-sale value. The products made by these companies are well designed, well made, reliable, and the companies have earned the right to be well-respected. With that earned reputation comes expectations.
So, what do we expect of people? Maybe we don't expect much at all from some people, if we have a negative view of them. But, maybe we expect a great deal from others, perhaps without even realising it. I guess that depends on how capable we think they are, or perhaps how 'big' they are to us - how significant, how much they fill our vision, what role they play in our lives.
As children, we unknowingly expect a lot from our parents and other significant adults, and so we should.
But what about as we grow up? How much do we transfer that expectation to someone significant in our lives, albeit unwittingly? Do we transfer big expectations to other family members, friends, colleagues, teachers, ministers, spouse? Do we get let down, frustrated, angry, hurt because what we expected didn't happen, doesn't often happen? I suspect that we expect far too much of them.
Do we expect someone to just know us, to know how we are, who we are, what we need? Do we expect someone to tell us what to do and how to do it when we're not sure? Do we expect someone to help us when we're struggling? Do we expect someone to constantly encourage us, approve of us or honour us? Do we expect someone to provide miracles or salvation when we're drowning? Do we expect someone to comfort us when we're hurting? Do we expect someone to share the load with us? I think we expect all of these, and it is nice when that happens. But do we expect too much of our fellow sojourners?
What about what we expect of God? Do we expect enough of Him? Do we expect God to do any of these things for us? Do we go to God first, waiting on Him for our every need? Or do we go to God last, and only when frustrated, because someone else hasn't met that need? Can we see others as just travellers on the road with us, or do we see them as our saviour, helper, miracle worker, counsellor?
Do we expect enough of God? Do we expect greatness from Him?
Psalm 145:3 says, " Great is the LORD, and highly to be praised,
And His greatness is unsearchable."
I suspect that we expect too much of others and not enough of God. God is great. He is great in power, in love, in honour, in comfort, in strength, in wisdom, and so much more. We should honour His greatness by expecting more of Him.
Perhaps we would see more if we asked for more, because He has all the power, all the resources, all the willingness we need for each situation. Perhaps then we would not get so frustrated with others.
When I went looking for a photo for this post, I found all sorts of pictures that implied greatness - crashing waves, huge waterfalls, vast oceans, deep valleys, high mountains, etc. But I need to see His greatness where I live and I don't live near any of that. I live here, in my little world, and it's sometimes hard to see His greatness if I imagine only those larger aspects of His creation. But, just recently, He blessed us with the most amazing rainbow across our place, which I didn't capture very well with my camera, but I thought I'd use it anyway to illustrate this post, because this example of His greatness was here, in my little world, and so is He, even now!
More on His greatness another day.

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