Expectations make a difference.
- Some people have no expectations
- Some people have low expectations
- Some people have high expectations
God has high expectations of himself. He always thinks, speaks and acts in the right ways. He always does so with a pure heart. Everything he does is with excellence, with integrity, with love, with faithfulness, and with justice. He does things for his glory and for our good.
God has high expectations of us. He expects us to think, speak and act in the right ways, always with a pure heart, with excellence, integrity, love, faithfulness and justice, always for his glory. We are to follow his example in every way.
Yet he realizes that we are imperfect people who many times fail and always need his help to live up to the expectations he sets before us. That is why he sent Jesus, to forgive us of our sins and fill us with his Spirit, leading us and empowering us to live up to our God-given expectations.
Notice what the Bible says about expectations, the things that are good and that the Lord requires of us:
8 Mankind, he has told each of you what is good and what it is the LORD requires of you: to act justly, to love faithfulness, and to walk humbly with your God.
According to the Bible, we are to…
- act justly
- love faithfulness
- walk humbly with your God
As followers of Jesus, we should always act in just ways. A simple way to think about this is this: treat others the way you want to be treated. This maxim is rooted in the Golden Rule (Matthew 7:12). We must treat others the right way at all times without regard to how much money they have or don’t have, what is their skin color, what language they speak, or for any other reason. Bottom line is this: do the right thing.
As followers of Jesus, we should love faithfulness. Too many people in our world love unfaithfulness, and tragically unfaithfulness gets celebrated in popular culture. Lifestyles of drunkenness, adultery, deception and greed are celebrated all too often. As followers of Jesus, we are called to much higher expectations than popular culture.
Let us not conform any longer to the image of the world but rather be transformed by the renewing of our minds so that we will know what is the good, acceptable and perfect will of God (Romans 12:2). Let us love faithfulness in our own lives and love to see it in others. Let us celebrate faithfulness in marriage, in friendships, in business partnerships, in holy living. Let us expect this of ourselves and depend on the Lord to live this way at all times.
As followers of Jesus, we should walk humbly before our God. Arrogance is not the way of Christ, but rather humility is. When we realize how glorious, perfect and big God is, we will be humble before him. And when we realize that through Christ we are forgiven of our sin, welcomed into his family, destined for eternal life in heaven, and empowered by his Spirit, we will walk before him with gratitude and humility. He loves us, and for that we are eternally grateful and humbled. Let us walk humbly before our God.
On this weekend when we remember the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr and we stand with those who March for Life to seek to end abortion in our country, let us act justly, love faithfulness and walk humbly before our God. These ways are good and they are what God expects of us.