When your husband texts you from work with an invitation, you order your life to make it happen. Jason mentioned fishing at Laurel Lake while I read my school books, then we could walk together.
“Let’s do this!”
Even as I typed my response, my heart began to imagine hiking. Somehow my expectations raised the bar on what Jason offered. He offered a walk. I wanted a hike.
Gathering my hiking boots and other supplies, we left mid-morning in hopes for warmer temperatures when we arrived.
Expectations are dangerous, whether they are met or not. They come from the flesh, a prideful desire to see life arranged in way that pleases us. ~join me for the full story of how God changed our expectations to expectant hope.Tweet
When we act from our flesh, we are not walking in His Spirit.
When the wicked man dies, his expectation will perish; and the hope of (godless) strong men perishes (Proverbs 11:7 AMP).
When we arrived to Laurel Lake, we added layers. His crisp wind moved His tall trees. Twice we heard high branches creaking as they swayed in His direction. It seemed as though the tree had something to say about God’s will …
As we walked toward the lake, I was on high alert for trails. None seemed readily accessible. Jason pointed to a trail head across the lake. In my heart, I crossed my arms like a little kid. I so wanted to hike, or maybe I already mentioned that 😦
Jason’s plans for fishing specifically in the lake were immediately dashed.
Though it was pretty to look at, it was pretty cold. In the midst our self-pity, we weren’t very motivated to stay.
What if we had begun our trip seeking God?
In the morning, O Lord, You will hear my voice, In the morning, I will prepare (a prayer and a sacrifice) for You and watch and wait (for You speak to my heart) (Psalm 5:3 AMP).
What if we began seeking God even after we realized our expectations were selfish?
That is one of the most beautiful truths of Our Father in heaven. He does not sit above us, waiting for us to mess up, seeing the mistakes so He can point a holy finger in our faces and say “told ya so, you disappoint me”.
Any time (and it’s never too late here on earth to do so) a heart humbles and draws near, He embraces. When we acknowledge we are lost, He gently leads us for He is the Way.
And He gives grace generously. As the Scriptures say, “God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble” (James 4:6).
It will be hard for me to find the words to share how He revealed Himself to Jason and me. Instead of just going home full of disappointment, Jason suggested we visit the other nearby lake. He said so with a spirit of hope-full adventure.
In my own heart, I talked to the Lord:
Lord, help me see You. Help Jason see You.
Almost immediately, Jason and I saw the stream. In direct contrast to the frozen lake, we could see the bottom the water was so clear. Gently running along the land, drawing us.
Maybe you wouldn’t say a stream is His glory. But when there is a spiritual pull to go closer, to listen, to see, to be. Neither Jason or I heard the voice of God. Though His stream spoke, whispered, promised:
For I will pour water on thirsty land, and streams on the dry ground; I will pour out My Spirit on your offspring and My blessing on your descendants (Isaiah 44:3).
When all that surrounds the moving stream is frozen (the lake, the ground, even our hearts), your eyes open to the life-giving water of Jesus here in your midst, reachable, touchable.
Jason, the Father’s son, who just wanted to fish: granted.
Julie, the Father’s daughter, who desperately misses hiking, was given something far greater: a walk with my Lord.
I wondered if His trees wait for spring like we do:
Do His plants believe and stand upon His resurrection hope, that all death is not final in His kingdom?
Do those who don’t believe in Him have any sense of His handprint on their hearts? Lord, help their unbelief
How glorious to see His truth appear before your little ole eyes: the solid, seemingly lifeless rocks scattered along His flowing stream.
A powerful call to praise Him, for if we don’t Jesus says the
“very stones would cry out” (Luke 19:40).
Through Him, therefore, let us at all times offer up to God a sacrifice of praise, which is the fruit of the lips that thankfully acknowledge and confess and glorify His name (Hebrews 13:15 AMP).
Sometimes we need to see desolation, we need to acknowledge a hardening inside, before He can move in your soul. ~join me on the blog for the full story of His glory.Tweet
I have an overwhelming sense of sadness for those with icy, bitter hearts. I once was lost like that, but now I know the source of water that makes me alive, that awakens compassion and uses me as a vessel of His truth on this earth.
Anyone who believes in Me may come and drink! For the Scriptures declare, “Rivers of living water will flow from his/her heart” (John 7:38).
Expectations freeze our hearts in self-pity and pride, seeking what satisfies us.
Expectant hope inhales and exhales Him, seeking to please Him.
Pray this with me,
I honor and praise Your Way, for it is perfect.
I ask for Your help, Father, to lay at Your feet any expectations in my heart today, outcomes I want to serve my will and not Yours.
I am humbled that You call me Your child. How gracious and powerful is Your love!
This moment, Father, I open my heart to You with expectant hope, trusting You will refresh my soul and guide me along the right paths as You tell us in Psalm 23.
In Jesus name, Amen.
Thank you for joining me here on this crazy cold walk where He met us, even in our huffing and puffing. I pray God spoke to you here. Please feel free to start a conversation in the comments or reach out to me by email email@example.com.
May God bless you today as He draws you near.
In His love,