Holy expectations

Psalm 56
What are we expecting God to do? As Christians, we speak often of the promises of God. We say, “God is faithful.” My soul affirms that. What God has promised, God will do. Not because we deserve the Lord’s respect or consideration. Not even because God is a nice guy. God will be faithful because God is faithful.

When’s the last time we’ve taken note of God’s promises? There are several we read of in scripture. I start with the umbrella promise. God will never leave us or forsake us. It covers a lot of what God says we can expect. Remember John Wesley’s deathbed quote: The best of it is God is with us. It’s the best because we know God’s presence offers the Christian heart a wealth of spiritual blessings. 

God’s presence brings peace, encouragement, guidance, rest and renewal. We also expect healing, salvation, strength and wisdom. Let’s not forget forgiveness and freedom from sin. Knowing there are more, we can say with assurance that’s a pretty big umbrella. Notice how many of these promises relate to one another.

Also, consider that our experience with each can be different. I may need a different kind of strength than you do. You may not need the kind of healing I do. Comfort and assurance come in various forms depending on what we’re struggling through.

Now, I reject the “name it and claim it” idea of prayer and holy expectation. Yes, I know the verses about God granting you every prayer you ask. But there’s nuance to that, right? God is not Santa Claus. And yet many times we see biblical characters expecting God to do certain things.

And there’s the struggle for me.

If we name and claim something, does that add to the difficulty of praying “not my will but your will be done?” It seems to put my expectation above God’s desire. Maybe if we claim God’s faithfulness first. Then name what’s in our heart to God. I’m all for being honest about what you ask from God. There’s no need to hold back. How do you approach holy expectations of God?

Of course, none of this matters if we don’t trust God to listen as we pray or to act when God listens. In Psalm 56, David is facing strong adversaries. They trample him “all day long.” But David knows God. God is gracious and Most High. David’s enemies have a good eye on him. They desire harm to him. And yet David has learned to expect God will repay them and make them retreat. All because he trusts God.

As we learn how to live in and pray for holy expectations, may the Lord nurture within us a deep trust in God’s faithfulness.

Stay blessed…john

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

John Fletcher

Recent Posts


Social Links