RSS

Managing Expectations

Managing Expectations

By Shelly Esser

The biblical landscape is littered with men and women who let go of their expectations in exchange for a life of trust and faith. Joseph, who was given a specific dream, watched it go up in smoke. Instead, he was sold into slavery, ended up in prison, and journeyed for years with unmet expectations. Abraham was promised a son. Years went by and there was no son. The Apostle Paul’s ministry life included long stints in prison, of all places. Remarkably, these people, despite their unfulfilled expectations and dreams, continued to minister in the circumstances God ordained for them, and they continued to trust Him with what didn’t make sense at the time. The encouragement for us is that God uses the disappointments in our lives to press us forward in our faith. Managing expectations in those times of dashed dreams can lead us into deeper intimacy with Christ. 

In the end, we were never intended to find our fulfillment in people, our circumstances, or even ministries. We were intended to find fulfillment in God alone. There will always be disappointments and broken dreams. Thankfully, though, we can hold on to the truth in Hebrews 13:8 which says, “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.” He will never fail us. Even in the midst of our broken dreams, we can start over, managing our expectations and serving God with a deep joy and passion. It’s often in the letting go, in the loss of our dreams, that we gain our heart’s deepest longing and treasure: Christ Himself.   


Do you struggle with the power labels and expectations have over you? These lessons learned from a prostitute turned princess may help. Read more

Self-Esteem

Do you struggle with setting ministry boundaries? God gifts us with compassion for others, but we can only be fruitful in the exact places He directs us. Read more

Ministry

When our broken places are laid before God, we find grace that brings greater growth than we could ever dream, grace that always measures up, even when we don’t. Read more

Faith 2 Comments

Why are we so tired? An invitation to retreat with God is always open. It’s the gift and necessity of taking time away with God and finding rest in Him. Read more

Faith

Do you struggle with perfectionism - trying too hard to get it right all the time? You cannot be everything to everyone – and that’s okay! Read more

Emotional Health 1 Comments

As a leader, you want to fuel a fire of excitement in your ministry team, but we all know what can happen if a fire burns too fast and furious – burn out! Read more

Women's Ministry

Finding balance isn’t about having a well-maintained calendar, it is about caring for all the parts of you. Read more

Finding Balance

In church leadership, can you balance ministry and family? Applying this one principle makes it possible. Read more

Ministry Life

Learning we are not responsible for "everything" is a lifelong lesson. Certainly we need to own our transgressions - but sometimes the pain and guilt we carry isn’t our "stuff" to own. Read more

Emotional Health

With our long to-do lists and the endless preparations to make Christmas perfect, how do we minimize the stress? Read more

Stress

In life, there are times we all feel stuck or lost or just lack motivation. A Life coach can get you off the sidelines and back in the game. Read more

Stress

There is no fear in love. Truly listen and believe as the Lord whispers into your heart..."Why do you doubt me? I have given my all for you. I will never turn away from you, my child." Read more

Relationship with God

When someone is in a difficult place, they will often take all that you will give. So, what do you as a helper when you're on the verge of burnout? Read more

Difficult Relationships

You may not be able to dodge the criticism that comes with ministry, but you can help your mate handle the hurt. Read more

Ministry Stress

When it’s all about what the Lord wants to do in the lives of people, then encouraging our husbands in all their busyness happens a whole lot more easily. Read more

Pastors' Wives

When navigating through ministry ups and downs, consider these 10 suggestions for staying the course. Read more

Pastors' Wives

As a pastor's wife, it's difficult when people criticize you, but it’s worse when they go after your husband. Read more

Pastors' Wives

As a ministry leader do you wrestle more with the fear of other Christians’ disapproval than with anything else - leading you to attempt to be all things to all people? Read more

Leadership Advice

Someone just introduced me as “The Pastor’s Wife” again. I wonder if I would be perceived differently if I were simply introduced by my name. Read more

Pastors' Wives

Avoiding ministry pitfalls is easy if we stay away from selfish expectations. But if we slip, God gives do-overs when we surrender to Him. Read more

Women's Ministry