Expectations in Christ

Posted on 13. Jan, 2014 by in Faith

The topic of faith is something that the Lord has continually pushed me in for the last several years.  It is something that was so mis-taught in the churches I attended as a child, so I had to undo those mindsets, and then begin building from a fresh perspective.  Unfortunately I think this topic is widely ignored in the lives of most believers, to the detriment of the body.  I have recently had several conversations with believers I know about things they were praying for or hoping for.  In each conversation we discussed the things that we felt the Lord had intentioned, and in each conversation the following statement was made:  “I hope so”.

In my previous thoughts on faith I always had an understanding that persistence in application of faith was important, but I could never really put what I felt into a nice package.  Last week, while reading in Philippians, I came across the following verse:

   “What then? Only that in every way, whether in pretense or in truth, Christ is proclaimed; and in this I rejoice. Yes, and I will rejoice, for I know that this will turn out for my deliverance through your prayers and the provision of the Spirit of Jesus Christ, according to my earnest expectation and hope, that I will not be put to shame in anything, but that with all boldness, Christ will even now, as always, be exalted in my body, whether by life or by death.” (Philippians 1:18–20, NASB95)  (emphasis mine)

The words “earnest expectation” embody what the Lord was trying  to make me understand about walking in faith.  We can’t pray for an item and then “hope” it comes to pass.  We first have to pray and speak according to the will of God, and then we have to expect it to take place!  If we pray and then say “I hope so”, our prayer will likely never come to fruition.  But if we pray for something, and even 5% of our being can earnestly expect that to come to pass, then we will see the answer to our prayer.  You see, God isn’t moved by our hopes and dreams.  God is moved by our faith.

   “And without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is and that He is a rewarder of those who seek Him.” (Hebrews 11:6, NASB95)

“And He said to them, “Because of the littleness of your faith; for truly I say to you, if you have faith the size of a mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move; and nothing will be impossible to you.” (Matthew 17:20, NASB95)

Faith to me is simply this:  a tenacious decision to accept the word of God (be it from the bible or otherwise) as being greater truth than what I perceive with my natural senses.  Paul says the following in 2 Corinthians:

   “For momentary, light affliction is producing for us an eternal weight of glory far beyond all comparison, while we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen; for the things which are seen are temporal, but the things which are not seen are eternal.” (2 Corinthians 4:17–18, NASB95)

There is a duality of our walk in Christ, a constant tension between that which has already been accomplished in Christ and what we actually see lived out day by day.  In my next post I will address this further, but for now, suffice it to say, we have to get ahold of what we have been given through the death and resurrection of Jesus.  We have been given a new mind, a clean heart and a whole host of things discussed in the bible.  Of course these things aren’t ours to use as we go through life willy nilly, these things are ours to possess as we pursue Christ!  But we can never possess them if we don’t know they are ours, and we can’t know they are ours if we don’t seek to know by reading His word, and trusting the Holy Spirit to reveal Christ to us.  And we can never possess them if we don’t see them as being more real than our current, natural “reality”.  We can’t possess them if we don’t EXPECT to possess them!  So next time you hear the words “I hope so” coming out of your mouth, change your thought process and your speech to the definitive yes, and not the hopeful maybe.

Tags: , ,

Leave a Reply