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March 25 Devotional – Jeremy Bower

Notated:

“When I was living in Washington state, I met an incredible couple named David and Kelli Prichard from our church who also served full-time in a para-church ministry.  I’ll always remember one of the quotes I heard from Kelli, “I have no expectations for non-Christians.”  What she meant by that was that non-Christians don’t have the Holy Spirit directing their life, convicting them of what is right or wrong, and giving them great moral clarity.  She went on to say that she doesn’t expect them to keep their appointments they make with her or her husband, and she doesn’t expect any gratitude from them, when they are helped and she doesn’t expect that they will always be truthful with them either.

The more I thought about their attitude, the more I realized that my own expectations of non-Christians are sometimes way too high as well.  I mean sure, we should expect that a person would keep their word and that they would do their job well, but what’s the reason for it?  What greater purpose is their life serving others than to benefit themselves?

Sometimes even my own expectations of others, including Christians fall short of what I wanted.  I’ve heard it said that, “Expectations are premeditated resentments.”  In my experience, this is 100% true.  If someone fails to meet an expectation (spoken or thought), I get disappointed.  If I get disappointed long enough, I start building resentments.  When resentments set in, the grace factor almost completely disappears.

Jesus says in Luke 6:31, “Do to others as you would have them do to you.” (NIV) I think he’s telling us that regardless of your expectations of others and how others treat us, it shouldn’t affect our dealings of grace and love towards them and that we should still serve, love, and care for them despite how they treat us.

As Christians, we should be living our lives differently.  Jesus said in John 8:12, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness but will have the light of life.”  We are living with Christ in our lives and that light should be shining into every area of this world.  Do we get it right all the time?  Of course not, but does that mean we shouldn’t keep striving to let Christ’s light shine and to let go of whatever is holding us back?  ABSOLUTELY.

We should be reminded from Jesus once again, to “let our light shine before others, that they may see our good deeds and glorify our Father in heaven.”  What are you doing today and this week to make Christ’s light in you shine?   What might you be doing to keep that light hidden? God bless you. – Pastor Jeremy Bower”