Most of what I dread has to do with my expectations and with placing my hope in people instead of the LORD.
I said this earlier this week. I shared about how expectations are my own undoing. The holidays. We think of Christmas decorations beginning in October, bountiful tables and Black Fridays in November and “too much commercialism” throughout December. We stretch ourselves thin…too thin. And we hold out our expectations like a measuring stick and we test our friends and families against them.
Whether you are expecting the best of someone, who cannot deliver it, or you are expecting the worst of someone, who fulfills that expectation and then some, people will let you down. Everyone you love, everyone you know, shares this with you: we are fallen people in need of Grace. We are bound to wreck it, step on it, step in it, and in a like manner, it will be done unto us…
Our own failures are a gift really. The failures of others too. All of it demonstrates our need for Someone Who is does more than exceed our expectations – He meets our need. Opening our eyes to our own sin allows us to appreciate God’s gift of freedom, rescue, release, absolution, peace…He has provided our remedy.
The only person who will never let us down is the Triune God – in that way we have Three to count on – Father, Son and Holy Spirit. And how can we ever put our hope in anyone else? Loved ones break our hearts: they transgress, their expectations collide with ours, they leave us in this life and they leave us when they die… In the end, and even at our own End, we are alone with the One who was with us before we were born.
For You formed my inward parts;
You knitted me together in my mother’s womb.
I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made.
Wonderful are your works;
my soul knows it very well.
My frame was not hidden from you,
when I was being made in secret,
intricately woven in the depths of the earth.
Your eyes saw my unformed substance;
in your book were written, every one of them,
the days that were formed for me,
when as yet there was none of them Psalm 139:13-16
And HE is always with you (1 Chronicles 22:18). And HE is for you and not against you (Romans 8:28-31). And HE guards you and provides good for you (Isaiah 58:11). HE is the One for which we can always be thankful:
Praise the Lord!
Praise the Lord, O my soul!
I will praise the Lord as long as I live;
I will sing praises to my God while I have my being.
Put not your trust in princes,
in a son of man, in whom there is no salvation.
When his breath departs, he returns to the earth;
on that very day his plans perish.
Blessed is he whose help is the God of Jacob,
whose hope is in the Lord his God,
Who made heaven and earth,
the sea, and all that is in them,
Who keeps faith forever;
Who executes justice for the oppressed,
Who gives food to the hungry.
The Lord sets the prisoners free;
the Lord opens the eyes of the blind.
The Lord lifts up those who are bowed down;
the Lord loves the righteous.
The Lord watches over the sojourners;
He upholds the widow and the fatherless,
but the way of the wicked He brings to ruin.
The Lord will reign forever,
your God, O Zion, to all generations. Psalm 146
Here is a beautiful rendition of a favorite hymn of mine. Maybe you will find peace in it too? Click here for the backstory, which, even if you have heard before, bears hearing again. Happy Thanksgiving!
P.S. See you Monday – when we will continue to “build” our House in the Family Workshop!