An account is given in Matthew of Jesus visiting His hometown. It was one of the most disappointing visits of His life. Matthew records, “And He did not many miracles there because of their unbelief.” (Matthew 13:58) It wasn’t that He didn’t see a need. It wasn’t that He didn’t want to. He was limited by the people’s unbelief and lack of expectation. They expected little from Him, and little is exactly what they received.
Most of the time, we receive from life what we expect. A famous university professor quizzed his class one morning asking, “Young ladies and gentlemen, what do you expect of the future? Which one of you will write the great novel? Who among you will make a great breakthrough in the cure of cancer? Which one of you will serve in Congress or even become the president? Which one of you will become a leader in business and industry?”
They sat there in awkward silence. After a while, the professor said, “I assure you of this, if you don’t expect it, you won’t achieve it.”
The word “expect” is a faith word. It is equivalent to the word “believe.” In most instances, if we don’t expect it, and don’t believe it, we can’t receive it. Jesus once said to a centurion in a faith matter, “It will be done just as you believed it would.” (Matthew 8:13)
This past year has been a hard one for many of us, but now we are in a new year. We need to ask ourselves what we expect the new year holds for us. Will things be better, worse, or the same?
Personally, I’m expecting things to get better. What are you expecting?
Robert Wilkerson, D-Min, is a minister, Christian writer, and author of several books. He and his wife live in Oneonta. firstname.lastname@example.org