Have you ever had a time when you really, really, really needed a friend, but there was none around? Someone to talk to, to hold on to? To help you through some dark hour? To help you through a maze of contradictory and hurtful things? That you are being torn up and turned every which way but loose? When you feel like you have lost a dear friend and everything is changing around you, but you don’t really know or understand why? There is a chill in the air?
A time when you feel like if you go backwards, you should have gone ahead? That if you went right, you should have gone left? That if you went left you should have gone right? That if you went forward you should have gone in reverse? That no matter which way you turn, it is wrong. No matter what you do or do not do, it is wrong. No matter what, well, it won’t work out the way your great expectations thought it would? It is what it is, you say to yourself – can it ever be repaired? If trust and belief are broken can it ever be restored? The answer is no, it cannot, and therefore you say to yourself why even bother? They just don’t understand, they cannot understand, it is only their viewpoint they know and understand.
Timelines and expectations. Oh, it doesn’t matter if what you said was true or not. “I will return” said the Lord. Great expectations. Timelines broken. “You promised”. “Yes”, He said, “I did, I promised you, and I will perform, but not to your expectations. Your great expectations have proven wrong over and over again. There is a method to all of this madness, you know. It is what it is, and it will all work out, be patient, be patient, don’t push so hard…”
“But” I protested, “the timelines all pointed here…” The reply was blunt. “I promised, I will return. You got there before I did, but I will get there too. Do you believe me? Do you trust me? If you don’t we have nothing left to discuss…”
Expectations. Great Expectations. Other’s expectations. Hurts where none were ever intended nor wanted, the last thing ever…”Where is the promise? You promised…” Expectations are seldom met, even when everyone expected them to be…things happen, they say. Why do we have such great expectations for others when we ourselves fail in them as well?
“Yes I did, and I will perform what I promised, but not to your expectations and not on your timeline. Don’t be hurt, don’t be angry, just be patient, I will return, I will perform as I promised. In my Father’s House are many mansions. I promised, and I will perform, but not to your timelines, not to your expectations…”
So depressions sets in. Doubts. Trust? Maybe, maybe not. Expectations dashed. Who to blame? Let’s blame anyone and everyone. Strike out at anyone nearby especially one you love. “You did not meet my expectations. You are untrustworthy, a son of Satan himself…” And so it goes…” Ever been there?
So I laid down on the couch, and drifted off to a place where I go when I have failed everyone around me because they had great expectations. Everyone. Oh, they say no, that is not true, but you know that it is. A Spirit thing. “All I ever wanted to do was to love you, but you would not…” Failed. Expectations. Others expectations. The victim becomes the perpetrator, the perpetrator becomes the victim. Hard to sort out, hard to understand these great expectations of a fallen humanity.
So I drifted off to sleep…
I found myself walking up a hill in the snow. I saw lights on in a house I knew from my childhood days. The snow was soft, falling gently. I was going home. So I went inside but no one was there. I searched high and low for them. My mom, my dad, my brothers… I called out to them, but no one was home. No answers. No one would ever be home ever again. My heart fell. Great Expectations. I left walking in the snow that was falling heavier now. I felt utterly alone. My expectations dashed to the ground.
Timelines…It all went by so fast, I did not realize how the time had gone by. “You said you would do it by such and so” the boss said. “It isn’t done, you have not met my expectations, such great expectations I had for you! Can I trust you or not?” The truthful answer, no. Never. Things got in the way. I meant to get it done, but I failed. “I am so disappointed in you…” GREAT were the EXPECTATIONS.
I saw this bird laying in the snow. It had a broken wing. I thought I could heal this bird, bring it back, show it the way to freedom and fly free. The bird spoke to me and said “My wing is broken, my spirit is broken, and I am sick and ready to die…” I said “No, you can heal your wing, you can heal your spirit, you can fly and be free once again, I will help you, I will show you…”
“Not so” said the bird. “Well”, I said, “with that attitude I guess you are right, with that hurt, I guess you are right, with that spirit you are right, you never will be healed. But I would love to try, but you are so negative, so negative, what’s the point? I could save you if you would let me…”
“I am not yours to save” replied the bird. “Oh Jerusalem, oh, Jerusalem, if only…” rang in my ears. So hard to turn away. Great expectations. Great timelines, greater expectations. The Love of Christ. No one seems to understand it, so they totally misinterpret it. I guess it is not their fault, how could they? They only have fallen expectations, no matter how great they may appear.
Pressures from the right, left and all around. Perform. PERFORM!! Do it, get it done. NOW!! Corporate America!! DO IT, GET IT DONE, GET IT DONE NOW!! PERFORM. “You must meet our expectations for you. Your review is going badly, you failed. No raise this time. Sorry, you did not meet our timelines, you did not meet our great expectations…”
So your last paycheck is handed you and you walk away. You failed. Every which way but loose. So you pick up the phone and ring a friend. NO ANSWER. I really needed a friend tonight. Someone who might possibly understand, but could not because they also had great expectations about you. Failed again. So you put the phone down, sad, alone, so sad…
So alone now. So sad, too bad. Woe is me, if I did not have bad luck, I would have no luck at all. Thrown under the bus, the train, the steamroller and 25 18 wheelers. So I went into this bar in my dream. There was this woman there sitting alone so I sat beside her. She turned and looked at me. She looked like one hundred miles of bad road. We talked. She had, she said, such great expectations in life. “I had a dream”, she said. “But it did not ever seem to go right for me. Things happened I did not ever see coming. Life is strange. I am alone now. Are you alone?”
“Yes,” I replied. “We are all alone in the end of things. We are born alone, we live alone, we die alone, but then again, maybe not…”
She nodded. “All I ever wanted was to be loved and have a home…” Her voice trailed off, a tear ran down her withered cheek and fell to the counter. “I had such great expectations, now all I want is to just go home now, I am so tired…”
“There is one who can help you, He is not far off, He is inside your heart. You have no idea how much He loves you, no idea at all, and He has GREAT EXPECTATIONS FOR YOU…” I grabbed her hand and squeezed it.
I left and went outside and the snow was falling very heavy now. I began to think that even when we hit the low of our lows, and even when we feel so disappointed from our great expectations of others who totally failed us, that they too had great expectations, great dreams…
Maybe we would all be better off if we dropped off all of our so great expectations of others and simply acknowledge we are all liars, make promises we want to keep, and will keep, but not on the timelines and the great expectations of others. We all fail deadlines we cannot keep, make work projects we cannot do, and all because of unexpected nor ever seen events that happen, and then when it fails, we say to those we had such great expectations for “I am so disappointed in you…”
Do you have great expectations? Have you put pressure on someone to perform? Are you a boss? Are you the big, really big, big boss of all bosses? Are you supportive or a big nag? “YOU SAID…” Yes I did. So what? Did you ever say and not do exactly when and how?
The phone rings. “I am so sorry I cannot come over today. I know I promised, but something has come up…” Great were the expectations. Then who are you to turn anyone every which way but loose with your great expectations?
The snow is now waist deep. I struggle to get through it. It is getting too deep. I am getting tired now. Can’t move left or right, forward or reverse. Getting cold now. Getting sleepy. I had such great expectations…