Monday, March 29, 2010
"The times in life when I get the most hurt in relationships, the moments when I am most tempted to pull back, are when my expectations are out of line. When I expect someone to respond to me one way and they choose another. I get disappointed or hurt. In the verse in Luke that says "love your enemies (think difficult people in my life), do good to them and lend to them without expecting to get anything back," Jesus offers a word of wisdom and encouragement: DROP your expectations! I have interpreted this to mean that people cannot give you what they do not have. Whatever the reason for that, when I realize that they did not give what they did not have, I am set free! In my heart I can be kind again."
As I read this in The Organic God by Margaret Feinberg, I thought, "Oh my gosh! This is so true of me. I do have expectations of people to act a certain way toward me, toward others and when they don't, I get hurt and judge them or reject them. I need to remember this so I CAN drop my expectations and just give kindness. And how do I do that? By receiving the abundant kindness of God toward me. Well, actually, I have already received it, since He has forgiven me of all my grime and gunk and has loved me extravagantly and lavishly. I just need to be aware of that truth moment by moment and in those moments when someone does not reciprocate, turn to God to recognize HIS abundant kindness to me and settle into Him and receive the kindness I'm looking for from the other (difficult, especially at that moment) person, from God instead. He never disappoints.
Help me Papa to be more kind to those who don't do what I expect and help me remember they don't have it to give back.
That gets me out of my entitlement mentality (I deserve their kindness b/c I was kind, or b/c they are my friend, my family). People never seem to respond well to others feeling entitled."
"A renewal or restoration takes place (in me) when I give up the sense I am owed something. I am able to give freely, not expecting anything in return." ibid.
This is my prayer for myself today. Simple, but not easy. Thank You Papa that you are willing to help me be more like You in this way.