Have you ever built something up so much in your mind that there was just no way for the reality to rise to the level of your expectations? Maybe you went to a restaurant for dinner, and the food was simply amazing. So, you told your family and your friends how great it was, and you looked forward to taking them with you so that you could share your experience with them. You talked it up for weeks and finally returned to the restaurant, only to find that both you and your friends were disappointed. The food was good. It was ok. An otherwise good meal just wasn’t quite what you remembered or what they expected.
Our expectations have a lot to do with whether we are satisfied in a given situation. When our expectations far outpace reality, it is a recipe for disappointment. On the other hand, when the reality exceeds expectations, we’re overflowing with excitement. When Moses said to God, “Please show me your glory,” the Lord pointed Moses both to His grace and to His glory, which was ultimately too much for Moses to behold. The reality is that God’s grace and glory are always more than we can comprehend. He always exceeds expectations.
Ephesians 3:20 says that God “is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think.” The missionary Willliam Carey once said, “Expect great things from God, attempt great things for God.” We have a God whose ability always exceeds our expectations. As you pray, what are you asking God to do? What are you expecting Him to do? To put it another way, if God instantly answered every prayer you’ve been praying, how would the world change? How would your life change? How would the lives of others be transformed? Let’s remember that we pray to the One who is able to do far more than we can ask or imagine. And then, let’s pray and live accordingly.