As we get ready to dive into a new series at MOTO, I've been thinking about my time in middle school and high school and how much of me then is still here now. It's brought me to expectations, I've felt it a lot lately and it seems to be a pretty ugly monster that can consume and devour us.
When I was in my teen years I was a pretty good athlete and I had a pretty good sense of humor, both of which I think are great things. But when I look at how things played out in my life within those years and what it was that kept me up at night wondering who I was and why I wasn't happy, it comes down to expectations. The way I see it, when we do something great in human greatness, it happens only once. If I do or say something funny, then people laugh and it's all good, but now I have expectations on me to be funny again, because you can't sit on that moment. Anyway, when I live in the applause of that moment I then know I have to work harder and think of something funnier and more entertaining for the next moment.
I'm still someone who has a pretty good sense of humor and sadly my athletic status is hidden behind a lack of consistant exercise and a desire to eat like I'm a middle schooler. But I still find myself living in expectations, not so much when it comes to being funny but in many other phases of my life. People are going to put expectations on you and I'm sure not going to spend my time pointing fingers at them for doing it, this is life. But I can choose not to live in those expectations and I can choose to live in this great God of ours. It is amazing and quite often overwhelming to know that God created me and loves me just as I am, and that he has such an incredible life to offer me. The way I see it, when we live in that place, expectations cannot even begin to hold what God wants to do in and through us. To seek people's applause only leads to looking for more applause, which leads to an exhaustive life of expectations. But choosing to live in God, frees us from expectations, because God doesn't want to applaud us so much as He wants to love us without expectations of us even loving Him back. You see it's when we do love Him back and we engage in a relationship with Him, that He unleashes in us something beyond human reason and beyond human expectations. Sure it's sad when people put expectations on us, but it is even more sad when we choose to live in those expectations.