Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Adjust your expectations, Miss Piggy!

I have to admit, I haven't laughed as hard as I did watching Muppets Most Wanted on Christmas Day... in quite some time. Not sure what that says about me, but there you go, think what you will! :) Regardless of whether you see the movie or not, you really MUST watch this music video. HI-larious, as my family would say! Paul and I got a good laugh out of it for days, really :) The movie and this video in particular got me thinking though, what have my expectations been lately - for myself, my marriage, my life, my faith, etc? Are they healthy, godly expectations, or are they self-centered worldly expectations? Okay, I'll be honest, a little of both. You too?

When we were newly married almost four years ago, Paul and I read Paul David Tripp's book, What Did You Expect? {Redeeming the Realities of Marriage} together, and it was revolutionary for us. I suspect Miss Piggy has not read this book (and Kermit is wise not to pop the question until she does! :) Expectations are tricky little boogers. Unfortunately for most of us, we don't realize we even have expectations for a certain relationship or situation until we find ourselves disappointed with the realities we are facing.

This time of year, I think it is safe to say that we are all faced with expectations for the new year before us. Whether those are positive, healthy expectations, guilt-ridden expectations, or simply selfish expectations, that's for you and God to evaluate...sharing with a friend is good too. Expectations are not inherently wrong, and in fact, can sometimes be helpful. Healthy expectations can help us make wise choices, enjoy the blessings around us, and dream about what God could do with our gifts and talents, among other things. Selfish expectations can do the opposite, often robbing us of joy, leading us down fruitless paths, and distracting us from God's best for our lives. As we move forward into our year, might we consider what our deeper motivations and expectations are? Why are we doing/planning/hoping for the things we are hoping for? Are our goals and expectations informed by truth, selfless love, and joy in Christ?

I've also seen that my dreams and expectations can be too small, as well! God-centered hopes and expectations are fixed on the person of Christ, HIS goals in the world, who we are in the image of God, and His power that can make all things possible. Only God knows if our hopes/dreams/expectations for ourselves this year are what HE would want. Have we asked Him to lead us in this area? Are we more focused on changing someone else, than being focused on surrendering to the amazing things God wants to do in and through us this year?

For added encouragement on this topic check out Emily Freeman's book, A Million Little Ways: Uncover the Art You Were Made to Live or Holley Gerth's You're Made for a God-Sized Dream: Opening the Door to All God Has for You, as well as the Paul David Tripp book I mentioned above.

Please consider leaving a comment with your favorite book or resource on the topic! I'd love to learn from your experience. I'm also curious about the new movie Into the Woods, as I've heard it displays the down side of getting what we want. Have you seen it? What do you think?

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