Those Ol’ Expectations

“I have found it very important in my own life to try to let go of my wishes and instead to live in hope. I am finding that when I choose to let go of my sometimes petty and superficial wishes and trust that my life is precious and meaningful in the eyes of God something really new, something beyond my own expectations begins to happen for me (Henri J. M. Nouwen, Finding My Way Home).” 

That’s the hardest part– letting go of expectations of how we thought our lives would turn out. Some of us (including me) expected to be married at this point. Some expected to have those 2.5 kids and that white picket fence by now. A lot of us expected to be in a career that involved more than counting down the hours to 5 o’clock and counting down the days to Friday.

I keep thinking about the story of the little girl and her imitation pearls. In the story, night after night, her father said to the little girl, “Give me your pearls.”

Each night, the little girl refused adamently. 

Finally, after weeks and weeks, with tears in her eyes, the little girl looked up at her father and told him, “Here, daddy. You can have my pearls.”

It was at that moment that the father pulled out a strand of real pearls that were way more valuable than the fakes. He had only been waiting for her to let go of the old to receive the new.

What expectations are keeping you from receiving God’s best for you? In what areas of your life can you trust that God has better dreams for you than you do for yourself? 

Ultimately, do you and I believe that God in and of Himself, apart from any gifts or promises, is enough? Will God alone be enough to satisfy?


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