Expectancy – The Bridge to the Miraculous

November 14, 2021

Expectancy – The Bridge to the Miraculous
Darrin Vaughan – Campus Pastor
November 14, 2021

 

Table of Contents
Hope & Expectancy
Expectancy Looks Forward
Overflowing with Hope
Application Questions

 

Hope and Expectancy 

No one can live without hope. Every person you will ever meet needs hope. Another word for hope is expectation. Do you expect God to do something incredible in your life? God also has expectations for us, His followers. He expects us to have a good attitude about serving Him, not just in church, but outside in the world. You might be expecting God to do something great in your life, and that is good! But don’t be upset when God, through His word and the Holy Spirit, has expectations for you as well! 

Expectancy Looks Forward

Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.
Hebrews 11:1 

Expectancy looks forward, not backward. We serve a God of the “not yet seen.” Maybe you have been believing for God to do something incredible in your life for many years. Maybe you’ve been praying for a loved one to be saved or believing for a home for your family or for a job. Even if you’ve been believing for a long time, hope does not look backward. Picture a rearview mirror. You need that mirror to back into a parking spot, but it only gives a limited perspective. It is good for a short moment, but you can’t drive forward while looking in your rearview mirror. If we’re looking in our spiritual rearview mirrors while trying to drive forward with God, we will bump into things on the spiritual road. Our perspective will be limited to what’s behind us, not what’s ahead. 

Jesus said remember the height from which you’ve fallen. Repent and do the first works. Don’t stay in a backward facing perspective. Listen to the Holy Spirit, open your Word, and ask God what He requires of you. Move forward into all God has for you. Paul said it this way in Philippians 3:13-14, “Brethren, I do not count myself to have apprehended; but one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.” It is a lot easier to hit a target if you know what you’re aiming at. Paul had an eternal goal in mind, and he spent his whole life running his race for Christ. 

Overflowing with Hope

Let’s pretend for a moment that we could measure the hope in our lives. Imagine the gas gauge in your car: it’s either empty, partially full, or completely full. As believers, we want to be overflowing with hope, not running on E. The Bible talks about Christ in us, the hope of glory. If anyone should have lasting hope, it’s us. Only those who know Jesus as Savior can have eternal hope, all other hope is just temporary. There are people we meet every day who need the hope inside of us. If we are sad and hopeless, people will look at our lives and conclude that they can’t find hope with us or what we have. That might drive them to look elsewhere, like to the drug dealer down the street. We should have enough hope for ourselves and to give out to others. People should look out of our lives, see the hope oozing out, and ask what we have. We offer them hope from the God whose streams never run dry.

We have hope in our salvation. The only thing that matters eternally is whether we have Jesus living inside of us. Humans can live for 40 days without food, 4 days without water, 4 minutes without air, but we cannot live 4 seconds without hope. 2 Kings 4 tells the story of Elisha meeting a poor widow with nothing but a jar of oil. She felt like she had nothing at all, and sometimes we also feel like that. But hope looks at what we have and recognizes it is from God, and He can bless and increase it. God saw that woman and sent Elisha to bring the increase. She gathered empty jars, and God filled them with oil.

Hope is an anchor for our soul as it says in Hebrews 6:19. You’ll know you have hope when you feel it anchoring you into the things of God. So many people move from relationship to relationship, job to job, place to place, because they lack hope. Sometimes we forget this hope Christ has put inside of us. We forget the things God has done and focus on the things He hasn’t done. Then our hope meter drops to empty, and we have nothing to give out. Thankfulness and a grateful heart will help us realize God has been good to us even during times of testing. Even if you don’t have two dimes together, look back and remember how God has supplied all your needs, and declare that He will continue to do so. The widow in the story felt invisible, but God saw her. He also sees you. Maybe you feel like no one knows the struggles you are going through and everyone else looks happy. God’s gaze is right on you. 

It also matters who you put your hope in. The women turned to Elijah because she knew his connection with God. Hope is not abstract or material or wishful thinking. Hope came embodied in a person, the man Jesus Christ. Christ in us is the hope of glory. As believers, we should be the most hopeful people on the planet because our hope is eternal. No matter what we have on this earth, we have eternal salvation. Sometimes we put our hope in people, man-made strategies, or common sense, but God wants to give us uncommon sense. He wants to give supernatural strategies like the woman gathering empty vessels. It seemed absurd to get something empty, but God had a strategy. 

We don’t just need hope for ourselves. God wants us to pour out hope into other people. Jesus said to go into all the world and preach the gospel. We need to share hope with as many people as we can. When we have hope, we can give to others out of the overflow. Sometimes we limit God and think He can only fill one small cup. God wants to fill all our vessels to overflowing. You will never exhaust the resources of Heaven that God wants to pour into your life. Hope shuts the door to a poverty mindset. We must shut the door to the mindsets that have bankrupted us. God wants you to be blessed so you can be a blessing to others and leave an inheritance to your children. Expectant people rejoice when others are blessed, and they look for ways to bless others. Let’s be people overflowing with hope!

Application Questions

When it comes to hope, where is your hope meter today? Do you expect God to do something incredible in your life?

Are you looking into the rearview mirror while trying to go forward with God? Can you leave the past behind and ask God to renew your hope today?

What do you have? Like the widow with the empty vessels, ask God what you have and how He wants to fill your life to overflowing today.

Think of people you know in your family, friends, or coworkers, who need hope. How can you reach out to those people and pour hope into their lives? 

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