He came into the world he created, but the world didn’t recognize him.
John 1:10 (NLT)
Jesus came into the world He created; The Messiah, wrapped in the flesh of an infant child. And the world did not recognize Him. The Jewish people were looking for the Messiah who would bring peace to the world, but the peace God was bringing was not the peace they were expecting.
“I’m leaving you with a gift – peace of mind and heart. And the peace I give is a gift the world cannot give. So don’t be troubled or afraid,” (John 14:27, the words of Jesus).
The Jews had their own expectations of what peace should look like. Could it be that their own expectations blinded them to the truth? Could it be that their expectations caused them to miss what God had done? Was it their expectations that caused them to miss the peace? God’s peace?
How many times have you and I missed God’s peace because we thought we needed, wanted, or believed for something else? How many times have our expectations overshadowed the reality of God’s hand already at work?
During this past Christmas season, I thought a lot about Jesus’ arrival and how nothing about it was what the people of God expected – yet it was all prophesied. I wonder if the people had heard the prophesies so many times they began picturing it in a way that was relevant to them – a way that met their expectations, but missed the bigger picture God was painting. I’m embarrassed to think about how many times I’ve done the same thing – looking for God to move in a way that makes sense to me, and then missing what He’s really trying to show me.
As I look back on 2017, I can see all the beautiful moments God moved on my behalf. They don’t look like I thought they would, but they ended up being better than I could have ever dreamed. If hindsight is 20/20, then that is the vision I want to have looking ahead; not that I would be able to see everything before it happens, but that I would have eyes to see it as it does.
I pray that as we all go into this new year, we would let go of our expectations and grab hold of His Truth – knowing and believing:
…that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose (Romans 8:28, NIV).
And that, my dear one, is something you can expect to see.
Associate Pastor, Lifegate Women