I remember sitting with my eldest daughter Hannah in a small rental house in Houston and rocking her as a baby with soft classical music playing and feeling so blessed. I felt the joy and wonder of the new life that God had given me and I knew the privilege and responsibility that was ours to hold and help her in life. All along, I knew she was not my baby, but a gift from the Lord.For some reason that sweet time has been playing repeatedly in my head this morning as I have been up since 4. I got up and watched some Joyce Meyers videos on expectations. There are 6 in the series, but I thought I‘d send the 4th and you can decide if you want to watch everything or not. The other videos are on the right side of the screen on You Tube if you want to watch them as well. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jZFYYQBFH8c&feature=relmfu
So, why do I start talking about expectations, joy and my daughter? Because as usual I am not filtered in my thought or words and even as I write there isn’t much concern for what you will think of me or how best I should say (type) this or that. This is what I have been thinking about, so you as a blog reader get to hear my thoughts and know what is on my heart this morning.
We all have expectations and desires in life. We all have hopes, dreams, expecations, concerns and worries even. When I think about Hannah, I think about my desire for her to have the best that the Lord has for her - that is it. That is what I always wanted for her and prayed for her. I wasn’t caught up in I want her to be X and do Y and act like Z. No, at the time of this first consistent prayer, we were members at Second Baptist Church, the Lord was filling me up through his word, great preaching, an awesome Sunday school class, great friends, and the list goes on and I decided then and there that all I wanted and want her to be His servant, to do His work and will. God has not disappointed me, Hannah is a strong Christian and I know without a doubt in my mind that she is living and wanting to continue living for the Lord. She has a hunger for the truth that I never had at her age and it’s super cool to see. She wants to be used by God and so I see the answering of those prayers over her even as a baby coming to fruition. Hannah is growing into an amazing young woman and I see all of my children growing into unique and special blessings from and for the Lord created for His special purpose and plans. I have to remind myself this morning that I too am one of God’s special children and that He has plans and desires for me too. It’s not too late for me to still do good things for His kingdom.One of my biggest problems in life in general is the expectations I have had. I was okay with responsibilities and even hard work, but I just never knew just how much hard work my life would be. I never knew I would have a “only child” hubby and six children, home school, start programs, be involved in ministries, have lots of friends with difficult times and so many problems themselves that I would be a part of. I never knew of all the sicknesses and cancer. I never knew of all the activities and needs of each person in my life. I never knew just how much sin in each one of everyone’s lives including my own, that would be so gosh darn irritating and problem some. Don’t get me wrong I am not complaining about these blessings, but I am complaining, I guess that no one ever told or taught me about expectations. Having real expectations about life and all that would be expected of me with the many hats I wear would have been great. Life is such a balancing act and then there is so much faith and trust needed for each circumstance and situation. I grew up with adults that whined and complained a lot and I find myself doing the same. I drive myself crazy because I am constantly trying to retrain myself and take each thought captive. I am trying not to whine so much, either verbally or even in my spirit when the toilet paper roll isn’t put back or the dishes sit in the sink until I wash them or ask someone to wash them.
I will be the first to admit that I have definitely put too much trust in people. I don’t know why I constantly do this and expect people to act the way I would treat someone, because well they aren’t me, but I do. I am disappointed by people’s lack of commitment, trust, communication skills, knowledge about a particular subject and once again, the list continues. Why? I ask myself why time and time again this morning and I realize the answer is that I have hope.Hope is not a bad thing, not at all, but I realize that my hope has been put in the wrong things as of late and I need to get back on track and put my hope and trust solely in the Lord and his Soverign, powerful and just hands instead of trusting and depending on man. Even myself -I cannot be trusted, I am human and a sinner and I will screw up time and time again. I disappoint myself and others around me and this is just part of life. I try to have grace for others and myself, but I admit once again that I get frustrated, short-tempered and even disgusted at times when my expectations aren’t met; especially if it happens repeatedly with the same person. This whole command to forgive 70 X 7 times seems quite excessive! You mean I have to put up with someone screwing up (in my mind according to my standards) 490 times and extend grace each time?! Whoa!
So this morning as I get started and now come back to this blog entry hours after I started it, I am trying so hard to problem solve through the eyes of the Lord. I am trying to do what He wants me to, I am trying to extend grace and compassion and understanding to everyone and myself. I am trying to trust Him and His plan for my life and my children’s lives even if it’s messy and difficult.
I want to be thankful for the blessings I have been given and be thankful for them instead of begrudging them. I want to be thankful for my house even in when the messes are many and there is so much to take care of. I want to be thankful for my husband, children, friends and extended family, government and media, etc. even when they disappoint me. I want to be thankful for my position as a director of my schools even when there are issues and problems. I want to be thankful for my health and even cancer even if it takes time money, energy and effort because I know there is a reason for it. Just like everything mentioned - there is a reason behind it. God doesn’t make mistakes and he is not a God of confusion. He knows and sees everything that has ever happed or will ever happen. That’s crazy! We cannot even comprehend his glory, sovereignty and providence.
So today, I will lower my expectations a bit and deal with each person and situation with an extra measure of kindness and love. But you know, even as I write this, in the last few minutes Hudson peed all over the floor and on his socks and ran around with pee pee wet socks and so I went to clean it up and I thought “Seriously!” and starting to complain, and so it’s not a day by day thing even – its a minute by minute struggle to work to be more like Jesus. I am so far away I wonder how it will ever happen.
I can have great expecations and hope for each day, but in order to skip disappointment, I need and have to remind myself that it is all on the Lord in whom I shall rest and depend on today (and this hour and this minute) and not myself or any other man or woman.
Gosh, I might just have to print this up and reread it each day.
Good Life by One Republic
Yet the Lord longs to be gracious to you;
therefore he will rise up to show you compassion.
For the Lord is a God of justice.
Blessed are all who wait for him!
People of Zion, who live in Jerusalem, you will weep no more. How gracious he will be when you cry for help! As soon as he hears, he will answer you. 20 Although the Lord gives you the bread of adversity and the water of affliction, your teachers will be hidden no more; with your own eyes you will see them. 1 Whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will hear a voice behind you, saying, “This is the way; walk in it.”
Isaiah 30 : 18 - 21