Have you ever though of what you expect from God?
Some people see God as a magical genie just waiting to grant some wish to his “master.” They expect God to be at their beckon and call. Of course others expect God to be an angry old man just waiting for you to step out of line – kind of like your old elementary school principal from back in the day. I’m not sure either one of those fits my expectations.
Truthfully this isn’t something I have really considered until just recently. But I do have some things that I have thought of which seem to be Biblical. Let’s see what you think.
I Expect God to be Much Smarter than Me
That seems like a truism but I’m just not sure everyone would agree with that. It’s so common that we try to out-think God. Have you ever heard someone say something like: “I just can’t figure out why God would do so and so.” Maybe, “It doesn’t seem fair that God will do this or that.”
Job couldn’t figure out why God seemed so angry at him and why he suffered so terribly. God really set him straight didn’t he?
Then the Lord answered Job out of the whirlwind and said: “Who is this that darkens counsel by words without knowledge? Dress for action like a man; I will question you, and you make it known to me. “Where were you when I laid the foundation of the earth? Tell me, if you have understanding. Who determined its measurements—surely you know! Or who stretched the line upon it? On what were its bases sunk, or who laid its cornerstone, when the morning stars sang together and all the sons of God shouted for joy? (Job 38:1-7)
Job was driven to understand that God was far superior to him and understood things differently than he ever could. Isaiah put it this when God spoke through him:
For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, declares the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts. (Isaiah 55:8-9)
Again, God is far superior to mankind. Anything we might expect of God is actually far beyond us. This perfectly fits as we would expect the creator to be far above his creation.
I Expect God To Show Perfect Love
Love has been messed up today. Too many people use it as a noun or adjective, rather than a verb to describe something you do and not just a feeling. I suspect that if more people understood love to be an irrevocable decision rather than a vague feeling there would be fewer wealthy divorce attorneys.
It really does not make sense to our finite minds that our creator would craft us in his image and then ignore us and allow us to self destruct on the rocks of sin and iniquity. Such would really be a god of destruction. Can you imagine a man working for years to restore a classic sports car only to stand by and watch while it is destroyed by vandals? just the perfect Mankind’s deepest hopes long for a God of love and that is exactly what he got.
“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. (John 3:16)
Or consider Romans 5:8 and its mighty claim:
but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
Truly we have a great God of Love. One more from the apostle of love, John in 1 John 4:16
So we have come to know and to believe the love that God has for us. God is love, and whoever abides in love abides in God, and God abides in him.
Notice the centrality of love in our relationship with the father! He is love and we are in him when we love. It’s a perfect show of God’s great quality of love.
I Expect God to be Consistent
This may be one of the most misunderstood aspects of God’s nature. We would question a divine being who switched back and forth, always changing his mind, motives and methods. It would suggest that the being did not know what he wanted to accomplish or was surprised by changing events and circumstances.
The God of heaven is perfectly consistent. He has been unchanging in his motives and has always exhibited a perfect desire for my wellbeing. Those who charge God with inconsistency fail to see the more important big picture. While God has changed some things in the way he deals with us, he does so in order to be in accord with his own greater purposes. When we understand that our salvation from wrath is his greatest concern we see that he has been consistent in all his dealings.
For example, God deals differently with Christians today than he did with Jews 2 millenia ago. This is not an indication of inconsistency but evidence of God working out a plan of salvation which teaches men how to relate to God.
Indeed, God has always been pure and holy, always hated sin and always loved men. Of Jesus the Hebrew writer wrote that he is “the same yesterday, today and forever” (Hebrews 13:8).
God has met every expectation of mine and fits perfectly (and better) with everything I would expect from a loving divine creator. The satisfaction of these expectations is one of the reasons I am a Christian.