Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Archive Post on Expectations vs. Expectancy

Good Afternoon Everyone! I'm reading a book that my wonderful wife got me for Christmas (based on a great recommendation) called "The Shack" If any of you have the opportunity, I highly recommend it. I'll even share my copy when I'm done... just let me know if you want to borrow it. If you have read it you may recall the chapter I'm going to share a synopsis of.

Anyway, one of the discussions in the book is about expectations vs. expectancy. It was good enough that I wanted to share it with you. The discussion clarifies our relationship with God as one of Expectancy not Expectations. Using the context of friendship he describes that If you and I are friends there is an expectancy that exists in our relationship. Regardless of if we are together or apart there is an expectancy that we will laugh, share, and truly be with one another in heart and mind. This expectancy is dynamic and alive and is a gift shared only between the two of us. However if you change expectancy into expectation, suddenly you are now expected to perform in a way that meets my expectations. What could be a living friendship rapidly deteriorates into a dead thing... or something with requirements and rules. It is no longer about us, but rather about what a friend "should" or "has" to do or be. The same could be said about any relationship, but I like this illustration in particular because I've been involved in and may to some extent still be involved in what I would catagorize as a conditional relationship with a friend or friends. What this has taught me is that regardless of the relationship, expectations lead to nothing good and that the expectancy of truly enjoying one another is what its about.

Now let's take this full circle to God. The book talks about God's expectancy of a relationship with us and not of his expectations for us. Ponder that thought for a second. Does it make your mind spin? Think about your friendships or other relationships. Do they have expectations and conditions? If so, are they truly friendships or something falling short? If they fall short, my question to myself and to you would be... what changes are needed to change to a relationship of expectancy and fullness.

The final thing I got from this and want to share is I gathered the author was trying to communicate that God only wants to live in a full relationship with us. Sure we disappoint him when we fail, but rules don't define our relationship with God; the way we choose to give it our life to him does.

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