Expectation is defined as something that will happen or be the case in the future. [i] Expectation of health and financial success and that of years to live and events to come. The last couple of years has left the most common of expectations in uncertainty. From supplies we normally expect to purchase at our favorite store to missed life events such as weddings, reunions and for some even their livelihood.
There is joy and travail in expectation. The joy of the culmination of an event is heartily expected as in the birth of a child. The travail of expected goals not met and with little hope to transpire. One survey reported that “62% of practicing Christians shared they had altered, skipped or canceled major events and milestones they were looking forward to as a result of the pandemic.”[ii]
Unsettling for many was the lack of goods normally available for Christmas. As reported by Forbes in October “More than 70 ships along the West Coast have been waiting for three months in a 40-mile line to dock and unload. According to the report, each ship has about 14,000 containers each valued at $100,000 in goods, for a total of $106,400,000,000 of merchandise in shipping limbo.”[iii] The expectation was for the cargo to be unloaded as usual with the expected labor needed. The expectations for the consumer were to receive these items in a timely manner. The expectation is for someone to do something about it.
We are so comfortable with having what we want at our fingertips that we may forget to place those fingertips folded in prayer. What is our path to a relationship with the long-expected one? Perhaps laying aside what we don’t have and concentrating on the greatest gift ever given man is the secret to expectation joy.
The Bible is a story told of great expectation. A story of a coming Savior and King. One who would save His people. Many still expect Him to return. Jesus’ birth was foretold in Isaiah 700 years before His birth “therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign: The Virgin will conceive and give birth to a son and will call him Immanuel.” [iv] Micah prophesied as to His birth 800 years before he was born and told of Bethlehem as the birthplace. (Micah 5:2) Micah believed and expected Jesus to come. Maybe in his lifetime.
Long, long-expected Jesus came to earth as a tiny baby. Born to live as man lives and feel the joys and sorrows of life. Jesus who gave His life for us so that we can expect more. We can expect His coming again to take us home. We wait for the promise of the 2nd Coming. How many more years? In perspective, that item tucked away and floating on a ship at sea seems like nothing.
Come thou long-expected Jesus. Come.
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[i]https://www.bing.com/search?q=define+expectation [ii] https://www.barna.com/research/a-year-out/ [iii] https://www.newsmax.com/us/shipping-containers-backlog-inflation/2021/10/11/id/1040058/ [iv] Isiah 7:14