Expectation

ex·pec·ta·tion

/ˌekspekˈtāSH(ə)n/

noun

1. a strong belief that something will happen or be the case in the future.

"reality had not lived up to expectations"

a belief that someone will or should achieve something.



What do you think of when you hear this word? Does it remind of some amazing event like the birth of a child, an approaching Wedding or some other wonderous thing? Or, does it mean a much darker experience such as a loss of some kind? Some may associate it with a ‘Silver Platter’ mentality, expecting everything to be given you whether deserved or not. Others may couple it with hard work resulting in an expected reward or compensation. Still, however you choose to define it, for most it has many different meanings depending on who you ask.

In the Gospel of Matthew, Jesus refers to the ‘birds of the air’, they neither sow nor reap or gather into barns yet, Your Heavenly Father feeds them (Matt. 6:26a ESV). I have seen this played out time and time again when I am in the field with my Camera. Birds of all kinds flitting about in search of some tasty morsel that may swim by or scamper along so that they can snatch it up and make a quick meal of it. Sometimes waiting longer, than what we would consider normal, to get it into their belly. They do not plan; they do not have some grand strategy, they just know. Do you remember the last time you heard any species of bird complain that they were hungry? Never.

We can certainly learn a lot of our fine feathered friends. As mentioned in the previous referenced Scripture verse, Jesus is talking about being anxious and He is explaining that God the Father knows what we need even before we need it. Yet, how is it that we as a people cannot grasp that message? Believe me, this is something that I often struggle with and I would assume that many do. I always want it now and when it does not happen fast enough, I get antsy. Yet, when I think back on my past life events, God never really gave me anything that was not part of His grand design or not in His timing and I can truly say that I have been blessed. It wasn’t always easy, and it wasn’t always according to my schedule but it was given by God.

Think back to our bird friends, they wake up everyday and begin their daily trek. Hunting and Pecking searching for food either for them or for their young, instinctively they know that it is there, they do not stress, they do not complain, they simply do. But, for us we expect it now! Even as babies we cried and carried on until Mom (usually), put a bottle into our wailing mouths and It was only then did we quiet down. You see, our flying friends do not simply “sit” still expecting that a fish or some other tidbit would just jump into their open mouth. They actively pursue finding food and unfortunately for many young adults they do not grow out of that stage, always expecting but never doing; all too often just hanging around expecting God to provide like some glorified Santa. For the rest of us, when we do receive a blessing from Him, we tend to forget thanking Him for it and go along our merry way oblivious to His Presence until we ‘need’ something else.

It is true that He knows our every need and longs to provide it. But often that provision comes with a lesson attached. Yes, there will be times where He gives us our desires unexpectedly, but we tend to be very desirous even to the point of covetousness, as we expect more and more, and we shy away from the needed lesson. We expect Him to provide and when He does not, we find other ways to obtain “our wants” and It becomes a very slippery slope if we continue that path. Our Heavenly Father wants us always to depend on Him knowing that as a Father He will give good things to His Children even when we do not see the good in it. Ultimately, In the end He wants us to seek His Kingdom first (Matt. 6:33 ESV) after that everything else will become secondary and at that point we will find fulfillment.

Yesterday, I meditated on the first few lines of Psalm 23 which many people, Christian and non-Christian alike know and perhaps memorized. In it the Psalmist writes, “The Lord is my Shepherd; I shall not want. He makes me lie down in green pastures. He leads me beside still waters. He restores my soul”, (Psalm 23:1-3a ESV). All those things HE does! We just need to follow and if we follow, we will find that the same Shepherd that feeds the birds of the air will also take care of our needs.

It seems that our feathered friends have got it right all along.

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