Monday, June 11, 2012

Great Expectations

My grandmother died when I was six years old and after the funeral, family members came to divide up her things.  She and my grandfather had lived with us, so I sat on our steps and watched through the banister while they worked.  I only wanted a couple of things....her navy blue stockings and a hat pin.  Go figure.  I was too small to wear stockings and never wore a hat, but that's what I got.

When they were gone we, my brother and sister and I, discovered a little cedar box that had been left behind.  It was the kind a girl receives at graduation, one with a little lock and just big enough for small keepsakes.  We shook it and there was something in it, something mysterious and clunky and it sounded like money....or a big diamond....or money.....or an emerald....or understand my thinking.  We wanted the treasure inside but the box was locked and there was no key.  What to do???

My brother was 7 and much more knowledgeable about getting into things, so he went for the screwdriver.  My sister and I crowded around and waited while the money/jewels rattled around in the box.  Sweating and straining, brother worked and pried at the hinges with the screwdriver, creating a slight gap but one that was too narrow to see.  The tension was killing us and the excitement grew and grew.

Finally, with a pop, the top flew open and the contents spilled out and we stood there amazed....and horrified!  No diamonds, emeralds, or money...just my grandmother's spare pair of dentures, yellowed and stained!  Oh the sadness as we realized our dreams of riches were dashed and we would have to live on in the same old everyday world.  We threw the mess away and went back to our humdrum play, disappointed and dejected.

What's in your "box of expectations" today?  What have you been hoping for that will take you out of your life and bring you happiness or excitement or joy....peace and contentment because at the moment you have neither?  Maybe your box of expectations includes a new boyfriend, or a new job, or an upcoming year at college that's going to be so much better than that last year of high school.  Maybe your expectations include being best friends with the new lady on the block, the one who seems so nice and easygoing?  Perhaps your box of expectations has a baby in it or a loving husband who will complete Jerry McGuire said in that sappy movie.  We all have one....a box with hopes and dreams and potential disappointments.  That's reality.

In this up and down world, we can place our hopes and dreams on what we DO know.  We can hope with the One who will never disappoint us or let us down.  When we look at Jesus, we are not surprised by ugly or met with shame, or faced with discouragement and doubt.  We can trust Him who is constant and unchanging and loving and tender...ALWAYS.  Perhaps your freshman year at college will not be what you dreamed....God is faithful.   If your children turn away from you and go their own way, God is faithful.  If the doctor tells you that having a baby won't be possible, God is faithful.  When you are alone and your marriage is crumbling, God is faithful.  With Him, we never have to wonder what will be in the box.

Psalm 39:7 "But now, Lord, what do I look for? My hope is in you.

1 comment:

  1. Great post, Paula. Great reminder to be content and trust the Lord!