If you want good things to happen, *expect* good things to happen! That may seem like a very obvious principle, yet, in my experience, many of us expect the worst to happen in any given situation! In fact, some of us believe that if we say we expect something good to happen, we will jinx it! Isn’t this true? Even those among us who do expect good things to happen, hedge our bets. Ah, we say, it will happen if God wills it to happen.
It is true that things will happen when God wills them to happen, but God meets us at the level of our expectations. And this means believing that what we expect to happen *is* going to happen. Let me tell you a short parable.
A few years ago Australia was going through a severe drought. At the end of a church service, the pastor announced that they would pray for rain the following Sunday. When Sunday came, the church was packed, but there was only one little girl who carried an umbrella!
Let me tell you another story, this one from the Bible (see Luke 8:40-48). One day, when Jesus was walking along the road, there were so many people gathered they almost crushed him. A woman among them, who had been bleeding for twelve years, reached out and touched Jesus, and was instantly healed. Why weren’t the others? They all knew who Jesus was and what he was capable of doing. They were all there because they needed a miracle in their lives. They were all touching him. The difference was this woman touched him with faith, fully expecting to be healed! Just like that little girl who carried an umbrella to church, fully expecting there to be rain in answer to their prayers!
Some of us may be afraid to expect too much because we don’t want to be disappointed. While this is a good practice to follow when it comes to having expectations of people, who almost always disappoint us, we can have expectations from God. “Ask and you will receive,” encourages Jesus (Matthew 7:7).
And he tells us how we should ask. “Truly I tell you, if anyone says to this mountain, ‘Go, throw yourself into the sea,’ and does not doubt in their heart but believes that what they say will happen, it will be done for them. Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours” (Mark 11:23-24).
So, dear friend, may I suggest you stop expecting the worst and start expecting the best! There are great things God has in store for you in the days to look. Expect them with great anticipation. And, remember, if you pray for rain, carry an umbrella!