William Shakespeare once said, “Expectation is the root of all heartache…”, if you look up the word expectation in the dictionary it says: a strong belief that something will happen or be the case. Synonyms for the word expectation include, anticipation, expectancy, hope, excitement and suspense. You see, William Shakespeare was right when he said that expectation is the root of all heartache, but should it be that way?

Quite recently I celebrated a birthday. When people bring my birthday up I usually just brush it off like it is nothing, but deep down in my heart I am actually excited for my birthday. You see I expect people to treat me with extra kindness on my special day, I expect lots of loving messages and the occasional gift. I have so many expectations for my birthday its quite scary.

The only reason I expect these things is because I always try to go out of my way to make others special, not just on their birthdays, but any given day. Also, when people wish you happy birthday they always seem to mention that they hope you get spoilt rotten or get blessed out of your socks on this special day (I am incredibly blessed, I mean I woke up this morning, what more could I possibly want?). So naturally when it comes to my birthday, my heart is genuinely full of expectations.

But…here comes the big but…if only I could skip the ugly in this blog, then you wouldn’t look at me differently, but the ugly is what helps us to grow, to mature and to lead others to Christ. Here it goes. Expectation in my opinion is just another word for selfish and entitlement. It’s selfish for me to think that the world revolves around me for those short 24 hours, its selfish of me to think that I am entitled for people to take time of their hectic and sometimes chaotic lives, to wish me a happy birthday. Its selfish of me to expect a lavish gift from my husband because I “deserve” it and its selfish of me to think that I am entitled to a better gift from my family because they gave ‘so and so’ something really special on their birthday.

I might be able to put on my fake happy smile, but deep down inside God sees my tainted heart. He knows my very thought before I even think it and I’m sure He is looking at me and shaking His head in disappointment. Its so hard to admit it, but it’s true, I am a very selfish person, not just on my birthday, but, every day.

Luke 6 vs 32-36 says “If you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? Even sinners love those who love them.

 And if you do good to those who are good to you, what credit is that to you? Even sinners do that.

And if you lend to those from whom you expect repayment, what credit is that to you? Even sinners lend to sinners, expecting to be repaid in full.

But love your enemies, do good to them, and lend to them without expecting to get anything back. Then your reward will be great, and you will be children of the Most High, because He is kind to the ungrateful and wicked. Be merciful, just as Your Father is merciful.”

The keyword in this bible verse is ‘expecting’.

Here is where I want to encourage my brothers and sisters in Christ.

Don’t just wish someone happy birthday because they wished you on yours. God sees all, lets do things with a good heart and with the love of Jesus.

Don’t just help someone at work so that they can help you…

I recently had someone follow my Facebook page only because I followed theirs first, let’s support each other, not because we can gain something out of it, but just because.

Help someone because you can, not because something is waiting for you if you do.

You know in your heart where you struggle in this area, ask God to help you work on it.

Lastly, just love!!! Love those who love you but especially love those who can’t stand your guts, love everyone. It’s amazing how far a little love can go and how drastically one’s life can change if they are loved.

Hide Luke 6 vs 32-36 in your heart, hide all of God’s word in your heart. The more you consume His word the more you will radiate His love.

A quote that has always stuck with me is “I just want people to see Christ in me. I don’t care if they don’t know my name as long as they get to know my God.”