Have you ever had an expectation that did not take shape in reality? You know, the type that was all too real in your mind, but it simply was never birthed into your life.
I have been thinking a lot about what was and what could have been, what is and could become in my own life. In my train of thought, something new came into mind. I wondered if Jesus suffered and experienced a whole host of human emotions, did he ever experience my emotions?
After giving it some thought, I think he did.
The passage that came to mind is found in the Gospel of Matthew when Jesus was at the end of his life. He lamented over Jerusalem and you can read between the lines to see the turmoil he was in over the city. He said,
“Jerusalem, Jerusalem, you who kill the prophets and stone those sent to you, how often I have longed to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, and you were not willing.”
If you are new to the Bible, it’s important to see that throughout the story of Israel, there were triumphs and failures. There were moments of rejoicing and rejecting the same God who delivered his people. And here in the story of Jesus, we have the all too real desire of God in the flesh who wanted to protect his people as a hen protects her chicks, but they are not willing. These people turn and reject the one who preserves and protects, often times violently rejecting people who spoke on God’s behalf.
I wonder what Jesus thought of the possible outcome of Israel if they simply followed after God. Later on in Jesus’ life, we see him in deep turmoil and prayer over what was to come—his violent, atoning death. Nevertheless, he followed after God’s will. Let’s never forget this final point though, because in the face of unmet expectations, he followed something greater.
When expectations come and go, it’s natural to find yourself mourning over what could have been. I would urge you to come and bring those expectations to Jesus, for he knows what you are going through. He knows what it feels like to not have those expectations met.
Come to Jesus, and find life in the middle of unmet expectations.