Expectation vs Desire

Posted by in Devotions

The desire of the righteous ends only in good; the expectation of the wicked in wrath.
Proverbs 11:23

Desire:   A strong feeling of wanting to have something or wishing for something to happen

Expectation: An act of eager anticipation.

Keeping with the theme that God has laid on my heart… this verse gives us reason to plead for mercy before God for our enemies.  Pleading for God to work in the enemy to work in the sinful unregenerate man/woman to work his righteousness into their lives.  How often are we quick like the world to just lay bare our enemy before God.

It is interesting the difference in the word choice in Hebrew as I study this verse, the word translated “Expectation” in my bible has a couple different meanings and it made me stop for a moment and think.  Expectation shares the word with a root word for rope.  Where desire is the longing of our hearts for good if we are “righteous,” it is the expectation of/for something that gets us in trouble.  It binds us up and we can become obsessed with it rather than being a good thing in our lives it becomes something that consumes us, something that we can not get away from.

My wife pointed this out to me in the last few weeks as I have been consumed by a project.  I tried to go into it with out any expectations but after a little success I quickly found myself hoping I would find more and more success.  My desire to complete the project became based on an expectation, anticipation of future success.  I was bound to the project not because I had a good desire to complete it, but I had an expectation of the outcome.  I found it twisted the project and as I drew near to the end my expectation was not fulfilled (thank fully).

Don’t we find ourselves doing this?  We latch our hold on to something and set our expectation to work and not the desire for God to work it for good.

Romans 8:28
And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose

Where is your desire?  Does your expectation have you tied up in knots?

expectation can get us all tangled up! (photo credit Boaz Yiftach)