Aug 27, 2014 by



Our daily lives are full of expectations. When I hit the light switch on my wall, I expect a light to come on. When I turn the key in the ignition of my car, I expect my car to start. And for some reason when I’m traveling 70 miles per hour on an eight lane interstate, I expect everyone to stay in their respective lanes. (Okay, that’s not an expectation. That’s blind faith.) We can’t escape having expectations in our life multiple times a day.

But where expectations become complicated is when we have them in our relationships.

Now understand, some expectations are right and necessary.

  1. In my covenantal marriage, I expect my husband to remain faithful to me and only me.
  2. In my relationship with my children, I expect them to obey me.
  3. In my friendships, I expect them to be honest with me.
  4. Even in my relationship with God, I expect Him to keep His promises to me.

These are all good expectations and completely reasonable.

The problem lies when we expect people to behave a certain way just because we believe they should. Why is that?missedtargets

Based on our past experience:

  • I expect my husband to do certain chores because my dad did those chores.
  • OR, I expect my child to react a certain way to a given situation because that is how they have always reacted without taking into account that maybe they have matured.

Based on our hopes:

  • I want my best friend to want to hang out with me no matter what is going on in their life. I need them to show me they value me.
  • OR, I want my spouse to know exactly how to respond to me no matter what my mood is that day.

Based on our desire for perfection:

  • I want my children to ALWAYS behave in public.
  • I want the intimacy in my marriage to always be passionate trysts with roses, candles, and soft music.

It doesn’t hurt to dream, but we must look at reality and communicate our desires. If we just live in our unspoken expectations, we can cause hurt, distance, and frustration in our relationships. Share your expectations with those you are in relationship with and then add an extra measure of grace.

How do you deal with your expectations?

~Jim and Jerolyn


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