What to Do When God Isn’t What You Expect

Have you ever ordered something off a menu based on the photo?

It looks yummy, so it must be delicious!

When the plate comes out, you quickly realize the photo wasn’t real to size or the portion is less than stellar.

Sometimes our expectations are radically different than the reality.

I have a feeling the Israelites felt a similar confusion when it came to the promised Messiah.

You see, Israel waited for the Messiah for centuries.Someone to come and lead Israel to their rightful place in the world.

Messiah means “anointed one” in Hebrew. You may be surprised to know that the term “messiah” wasn’t reserved only for Jesus in Scripture.

A messiah was someone or something that was anointed with oil. Solomon, various priests and prophets, Cyrus the Great, and even the Jewish Temple are referred to as messiah in Scripture.

But Scripture also spoke of a promised Messiah, a future leader who would reign once and for all.

Israelites associated the Messiah with wealth and power. Surely the future Messiah would reign from a throne and lead military conquests.

But instead, the Messiah was born in the basement of a rundown Bethlehem motel.

Instead of wielding a sword or establishing his throne, the Messiah (or Christ, in Greek), flipped, twisted, and jumbled their expectations. He spoke of humility, compassion, love, and putting others first. Not only did he teach this, he lived it. [Tweet this] Ultimately sacrificing himself for you and me on a cross—a humiliating death for anyone, let alone the King of kings.

Through the birth, life, death, and resurrection of Jesus the Christ, God continues to remind us that no matter how developed our theology is, it cannot and will not contain him. 

What to Do When God Isn’t What You Expect

Much like the Israelites, we may have our own expectations of how the Messiah should work, move, or act in our lives. We give suggestions, deadlines, and demands to the Creator of the universe, and sit in shock when God doesn’t protect, provide, or produce in the ways we predict.

Our God is not meant to be fully known or understood. Yet, we’re invited to rest knowing the world sits firmly in the palms of God. That no matter our situation, circumstance, or adversity, God has everything under control. [Tweet this] Choose to trust him today and #LIVEWONDERSTRUCK by the shift of perspective you’ll have.

How is God flipping, twisting, and jumbling your expectations of him this Advent season?


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*Original Photo Source