(Image taken by Donna Olivia Powell, 2009 at the Scarritt Bennett Center in Nashville, TN)
In one of my times of morning devotion last week, I was blessed by the heartfelt prayer of the Apostle Paul found in the third chapter of Ephesians:
"Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us, to Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever. Amen." (3:20-21)
I was familiar with these words. Most folks who go to church and stay until the end of service are. It is one of the many benedictions—the utterance or bestowing of a blessing—lifted up as the people of God go on our way to journey through another week. Truth be told, I am sure I've taken these words for granted over the years.
It wasn't until I read Paul's words of prayer and blessing that I was reminded of my time at the Scarritt Bennett Center in Nashville. As I walked across their campus—watching the birds fly freely, smelling the freshly cut grass, and listening for God—I stumbled upon an engraving on an arch that read "Expect Great Things from God." I stopped and read the words over and over again. I prayed them. I meditated on them. I would have sang them aloud if there weren't so many people around (and I wasn't tone deaf). I photographed them to take with me. I walked away changed, knowing that I needed/wanted/longed to expect great things from God moving forward.
To be in expectation is to have your eyes open, ears open, hands open, heart open, mind open to the move of God in your life. It is to have received a visit from the Holy Spirit. It is to be pregnant with dreams and visions. It is to believe that the vision that lives inside of you will be birthed in due time. It is to know that what is inside of you is greater than what you have imagined. Expectation is predicated on faith--the kind of faith that gets Jesus' attention, moves mountains and pleases God. Selah.
I am expecting great things from God this year. Are you?