Did you know, your tomorrow can be better than your today. I’ve been going through a list of words that will help each of us make the rest of our year, the best of our year. The tenth word on my list is “expectation”. What are you going to do with the days you have left this year? Let’s start with what you are expecting.
Did you ever think about how we are all different and even if we have the exact same skills and talents, what we do with them will be different from each other. Think of it like this. If we each bring home a bag of identical groceries, I’ll put them together differently than you. The dish you come up with will look and taste differently than mine. If we take the ingredients of each day, it will be different from what someone else might do with the same ingredients. Regardless, we take what we’re given and we want to make the best of it.
What are you expecting? What are you expecting for the rest of the year, for the rest of your life? The level of your expectation sets the level God is free to work. We can change the world by changing the level of our expectation. We can change what happens in our families, our circles of influence, and our churches on a Sunday in the same way. Whatever you expect with confidence becomes your self-fulfilling prophecy. Read Mark 11:23-25. Have no doubt, believe you have received and you can have anything you ask. It will be yours. But, when you pray, forgive first. So God will forgive your sins too.
If you believe little, you will receive little. You don’t have to settle. Pray bigger. Expect bigger. Receive bigger. It doesn’t take any more energy to have a big dream than it does a little dream. With God all things are possible. Michelangelo said, “The greatest danger for most of us is not that our dream is too high and we miss it, but that our dream is too low and we reach it.” Don’t settle for reasonable and disconnect yourselves from the abundance God has available.
Expectation shouldn’t be based on external events or circumstances. Circumstances are not always favorable. For instance, let’s say you are looking forward to a beautiful Christmas with family and gifts that wow you. But then, Christmas comes and half the family doesn’t make it and the other half are depressed and sad. That means half the gifts don’t make it and let’s imagine the gifts that are opened are not exactly what you wanted. It does no good to set expectation on circumstances. We can’t build expectation on the external, but we can build expectation on our internal relationship with God. If we have expectation founded in our relationship with God, anything can happen with our circumstances because our “expector” is in good condition.
The kind of expectation we’re talking about goes beyond events and circumstances. It's not rooted in those things. It's rooted in God. It's a supernatural force that comes from having faith in God and His Word. It comes from the inside out. He works all things together for your good. It is an inside job. Discouragement cannot overtake you because you are grounded in God's word. John 16:33 says, “I have told you all this so that you may have peace in me. Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world.” Life is more than getting up each morning and going to work so you can buy stuff and store it in your house then go to the mall to buy more stuff. Life is abundant when we are in relationship with God and doing life with Him.
Abraham kept hoping and believing that God would do what He had promised, even when he was 100 years old and his wife was 90. He believed that God would fulfill the promise that nations would come from Sarah and himself. His faith did not weaken. His expectation was an inside job and he never wavered in his belief, but his faith grew stronger. He was fully convinced that God would do what He said He would do. Are you fully convinced? This is Bible expectation. Hebrews 10:23 says to hold tightly without wavering to the hope we affirm, for God can be trusted to keep His promise. God can be trusted. If God said it, I believe it and that settles it.
When the world talks about hope, it's really just talking about desire. There's no certainty about it. There's no confidence in it. It's a term full of doubt, not belief. It's simply a matter of wishful thinking. But Bible hope is different. In the New Testament, the word hope actually means ‘to expect’ or ‘expectation’. Unlike the world's definition of hope, the Bible definition is full of certainty. It is the competent assurance that what God has promised will come to pass in your life. That's Bible expectation.
Bible expectation comes with endurance. When we have high expectations about tomorrow, then we will have the endurance to wait until tomorrow. And if our answer doesn't manifest tomorrow, then we’ll have the endurance to wait until the next day and the next. We won't give up just because things don't go quite right today. Your greatest moments are still in front of you.
Expect the best of yourself. Imagine that you have unlimited potential and that you can accomplish anything that you decide to do. Believe that your future is limited only by your own imagination and that whatever you have accomplished up to now is only a small part of what you are truly capable of achieving. Imagine that your greatest moments lie ahead and know everything that has happened to you up until now was merely preparation for the greater things that are yet to come.
What are you expecting God to do in your life, your family, your church and city? How about your nation? God has got to move and I believe it has to start with me and you. I believe it starts with an expectation of greater things. Greater things are yet to come and greater things are still to be done in my city and your city. I believe God wants to touch our cities, and if the fire of God is going to come to them, I pray that the spark would start right here in us today.