Great Expectations…… A Time to Build
Most of us have expectations. By the time we leave childhood behind, we are planning our futures, looking forward to the next stage in life that will, hopefully, secure us the lifestyle we dream of. We want good exam results, a place at uni or college, maybe fit in some travel too. We’d like to get our first car. We’re aiming for good degrees and a fulfilling career. We’d love to meet our soulmate, marry, buy a home, raise a family. Nice holidays and leisure pursuits would be a bonus too.
Then again, we might have different aspirations. Perhaps a role that changes the world and improves the lot of humankind. Or discovering or inventing something that will have far reaching benefits for everyone. Whatever our ambitions, most of us have at least some idea of what our futures might hold.
All well and good. But there are no guarantees we’ll get our hearts’ desires, despite our best efforts. This present Post-Christian world is an increasingly unstable place to be. We cannot be sure that when we go shopping or traveling, we’ll be safe, that our jobs are secure, our pensions reliable or our money safe in the bank. New diseases raise their heads. Terror stalks the earth. Standards slide and shift. Doctors’ prescriptions for anxiety, which has been described as fear spread thin, reach new levels.
But in the midst of all this, there is a safe place to be, a rock on which to stand secure, the rock Jesus Christ, who came into the world to live as a man and redeem us by his death. When we decide to follow him, we know that we are safe—not in the sense that nothing bad will ever happen to us, but secure in the knowledge that in every storm, every joy or sorrow, good times and bad, he is with us and will never leave us. His love endures for ever and will never change. And he has a perfect plan for each one, a blueprint especially designed for us.
Sometimes the desires we have are part of God’s guidance in our lives. Frederick Buechner said ‘Vocation is the place where our deep gladness meets the world’s deep need.’ With God in our lives, we have a firm foundation on which to build.