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Today’s Truth

Take delight in the LORD, and he will give you your heart’s desires.

Psalm 37:4, NLT

Friend to Friend

Do you think it is possible to truly surrender all your expectations, dreams, and desires to God?

For too many years I proclaimed that God was my Lord while resisting surrendering everything to Him. It’s no surprise I felt the need to be in control, especially in the aftermath of my childhood marred by abuse. It was my survival strategy to determine every next move and make sure it came to fruition. From the outside it looked like drive and perseverance, but when you pull back the layers, it was really an unhealthy habit rooted in lies. I believed I had to be my own protector. I was convinced it was up to me to make anything good ever come to fruition in my life.

The problem with that kind of stinking thinking is that my life was riddled with unrealistic expectations for myself and everyone else along with an endless amount of disappointment.

I was continually measuring my performance. I was consistently striving towards a fairy book dream. My perfect little house was never quite perfect, never mind dream of a white picket fence. My well-behaved and perfectly dressed children never existed. My husband was never quite devoted to me in the way I thought he should be.

My childhood ideas of what life should be like could never measure up to my reality.

I never took into consideration details like earning an income, caring for a house, struggling with health, and healing from heart wounds.

Maybe you can relate.

Maybe your expectations – even dreams – haven’t measured up to your reality.

Well, then, let me ask you a question God impressed upon my heart to release me from my expectations.

Is it possible that God has given you the desires of your heart, but they are packaged differently than you expected?

Sure, I wanted the perfect house and frolicking children and a devoted husband, but at the heart of the matter, what I really wanted was to be loved unconditionally and dwell in emotional and physical safety all the days of my life.

In Christ, I’ve found all that and more.

In Christ, I know what it means to be loved.

In Christ, I can experience emotional peace even in unstable times.

In Christ, we can find the desires of our heart fulfilled as we release to the Lord the expectations we’ve carried for far too long.

No, your house might not be what you want. Your relationships may not look the way you hoped they would. But your expectations can be adjusted when your Savior’s love enters in and writes a new story on your heart.

Let’s Pray

Dear Lord, forgive me for living with unrealistic expectations and refusing to yield my life, my dreams, my desires to Your will and way. Help me, Lord, give it all to You. Help me clear out the junk in my heart so that You may dwell more fully. Help me to embrace this life You’ve given me, where Christ can be my all in all.

In Jesus’ Name,

Amen.

Now It’s Your Turn

Is it time for you to surrender your expectations for your life to God? What would happen if you yielded your heart to His work and will, embracing the good He has for you in Christ?

More from the Girlfriends

Elisa Pulliam is a coach, author, podcaster, and speaker passionate about helping women savor life every day and cultivate a meaningful legacy. She is the founder of More to Be, a ministry devoted to helping women experience a fresh encounter with God and His Word so they may live transformed and impact this world with kingdom hope. She is also the founder of It Is Well, where she helps women simplify the transition into wellness by cultivating a whole food and toxin-free lifestyle for themselves and their families. She is enjoying the adventure of being married to Stephen for 22 years and raising their brood of teenagers together. Connect with Elisa at MoretoBe.com and ItIsWell.us.

6 Responses to “The Blessing of Surrendered Expectations”

  1. Karen says:

    What a beautiful expression of Gods personal love He desires to lavish us with, His tailored personable direct love, that does not match up to another’s love that they require.

    Often I have to remind myself of my worth and not compare myself to another. God has MY life mapped out. It’s up to me to stay in my own lane and soak up the tailored love He lavisheds upon me. Open our eyes that we may see Lord.

    Often we don’t see this because we get caught up in others and how God blesses them. I have many times overlooked that God did come through, just not in the manner I sought fir it to come through. You hit this point clearly Elise.

  2. Maria Larese' says:

    Would like to suscribe and know more about Godly women life.

  3. Sandy says:

    Thank you for sharing. I’m extremely appreciative.

    It’s been a struggle over the last two years just letting go of self, life long expectations, and finally coming to the end of my rope, and completely surrendering to the Father’s will and His way.

    All my life by God’s grace, I’ve been a hard worker, a mover and a shaker getting things done. However, over the last two years I’ve struggled daily to enter into God’s rest, bask in His presence, and learn to depend on Him for all things and at all times. The process though new and out of my control has taught me how much, and how desperately I need the Lord. It has allowed me to examine how much I depended on stuff like career, savings, etc., rather than simply relying on Jesus, and the power of His Holy Spirit while boldly declaring my Love for the Savior.

    Such behaviors I now understand and acknowledge is a stench in God’s nostrils, and should led us all to confession, and repentance so that healing and times of refreshing can flow. I’m forever grateful to the Lord for extending His grace and mercy regardless of how lost we may be. He’s truly always there. Thank you dear Lord, your are indeed the lover of our souls and we appreciate you. I love you Jesus.

  4. Karen, I love that you chose the words, “lavish love,” which God has been speaking to me throughout this year. Thank you for sharing your heart and turning your words into a prayer, too.

  5. Sandy, I think we could sit down for a long cup of coffee and talk about the real life we’ve walked. Your words describe me and even this season of RESToration. I echo your perspective and prayer. Thank you for sharing.

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"We loved you so much that we were delighted to share with you not only the gospel of God but our lives as well…" 1 Thessalonians 2:8