Many years ago I was working at a job that wasn’t paying me very much money. We as a family were struggling financially and I needed to make a career change. I finally found another job that was going to pay me substantially more money so I quit the job I was working at to take the new position. When I came to get my final pay from the company, I had the expectation of maybe getting paid for some unused vacation time and sick days as well as my final week of work. Well, to my surprise, they paid me much more vacation time because I had just gotten to my anniversary date with the company and I also had more sick days than I thought!! That last paycheck went far beyond my expectations and helped get our family back on track financially.
It is not very often that we experience situations that are beyond our expectations. Most of the time our expectations are very high and we are disappointed by the outcome of a situation. Can our expectations of the Lord be too high? Do we put on Him desires that are beyond His ability to achieve?
Ephesians 3:20 Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us,
The Word of God teaches us that the Lord is able to do things for us that are beyond our comprehension! What often happens though is that we desire the Lord to work outside His will. Our expectations are what we want Him to do and because the Lord knows what is best for us, He doesn’t “come through” like we want and we are disappointed. I believe that if we are seeking the Lord’s will in a situation, He will exceed our expectations.
There is the account of a crippled man in the book of Acts that was begging outside the Temple. Peter and John walked by and saw him…
Acts 3:4-8 And Peter, fastening his eyes upon him with John, said, Look on us. And he gave heed unto them, expecting to receive something of them. Then Peter said, Silver and gold have I none; but such as I have give I thee: In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth rise up and walk. And he took him by the right hand, and lifted him up: and immediately his feet and ankle bones received strength. And he leaping up stood, and walked, and entered with them into the temple, walking, and leaping, and praising God.
The crippled man had an expectation of receiving some money, but he got something much greater, he received the ability to walk!! He would beg no more. The Lord far exceeded his expectations, by giving him what he needed, instead of what he expected, or thought he had need of.
This happens to us many times. We come to God with a request for something we believe we need. We have figured our situation all out and have come up with the solution to the problem. However, God gives us what we need rather than what we want. It is the will of God that He meets all of our needs. We should always have an expectation for that. But, so often He goes far beyond what we feel our needs are and does exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think.
When we feel that our expectations have gone unmet, we need to look around and see all that God has already done for us. We miss God’s abundant blessings many times because we focus on the expectations that we have of God. The Lord’s will for the crippled man was that he would walk and bring God glory. If Peter and John would have given him what he hoped for, he would have died a beggar. Don’t be disappointed in unmet expectations, what we need is far greater. Allow God to exceed our expectations today. In His will, in His time.