Today is the 4th week in our 7 week series of, Freedom is Found in the Heart of Surrender. I’m thrilled to introduce my guest writer this week, Jan Yancey. Jan and I met through a mutual friend over a cup of coffee and I’ve been taking full advantage of her wisdom ever since. Now it’s your chance.
Do you ever feel caught in the trap of trying to live up to everyone else’s expectations? Do you find yourself striving to prove your worth to God? What if you feel like the expectations that your family has for you are different from the expectations your friends have for you which are different from the expectations your boss has for you and they’re all different from the expectations you have for yourself?
Enough of the expectations already!
Are you willing to surrender all of that and allow God to show you what He expects?
As I’ve spoken to women across the country, I’ve discovered that most of us seem to struggle with this on some level. We may have unmet expectations in our relationships; marriages or families, in our jobs or churches, and life in general. But for some of us, the highest and most unrealistic expectations are the ones we place on ourselves.
Many times, we expect more from ourselves than even God does and the results can be disastrous. When we set the standard, we run the risk of living in a constant state of disappointment, shame, and inferiority because we’re never enough. We can get caught in the snare of comparing ourselves with others and end up feeling discouraged and defeated. We’re so busy trying to live up to what we think we should be, we can completely miss what God says we already are.
We are beloved daughters of the Most-High God. He is our Abba Father.
I have often been disappointed in myself. It’s funny that the allowances I make for other people because of their life circumstances, I would never extend to myself. Why is that? In the struggle to discover the answer, God has reminded me of some life-giving truths.
God knows what we’re made of; He created us.
“For He knows how we were made; He remembers that we are dust.” Psalm 103:14 NRSV
God understands the things buried deep in our hearts that we may not even be aware of.
“Even if our hearts condemn us, God is greater than our hearts and knows all things.” 1 John 3:20 CEB
God has provided everything we need to meet His expectations for us. “Jesus has the power of God. And His power has given us everything we need to live a life devoted to God. We have these things because we know Him. 2 Peter 1:3 ERV
After a particularly difficult period in my life, I was disillusioned with people and disheartened by my circumstances, but I was the most disappointed in myself. As I was tearfully crying out to God one day, He painted a picture of what it would mean to surrender it all.
Child Of The King
I stand before You in my filthy rags; I am undeserving of the shining robe of righteousness that You offer as a gift to me.
You invite me to step into this radiant garment of forgiveness and grace, promising me beauty for ashes and purity in exchange for my shame.
But I’ve grown comfortable in this self-made attire: smelly, torn and ill-fitting, a shroud of regrets and guilt, holding me prisoner, thwarting my entrance into Your Spacious Place.
This signature costume of unmet expectations and lofty standards display an imposter’s label; It is dull, gray and constricting,
unsuitable for a Child of the King…
Most High God, Almighty One…Abba Father
As I humbly bow,
would You be willing to remove this grimy, tattered, damaged, cloak of lies?
As I kneel before You with my eyes downcast, You gently take my face in Your hands and place a tender kiss on the top of my head.
Raising my countenance to behold Your glory,
You remove the sackcloth and ashes that weigh me down, discarding them forever.
You lovingly envelop me in a dazzling, feather-light mantle of Your Brilliant Righteousness and Eternal Love.
It fits perfectly, as if it were made just for me. I freely dance and sing, rejoicing in the Beauty of Your Holiness.
“I delight greatly in the Lord; my soul rejoices in my God. For He has clothed me with garments of salvation and arrayed me in a robe of His righteousness…” Isaiah 61:10 NIV
“Worship the Lord in the splendor of His holiness.” Psalm 29:2 NLT
Freedom to embrace all that God has for me is found as I am willing to surrender all my expectations. Overflowing joy and worship are the fruit of a surrendered heart.
personal life experiences which include being a worship pastor’s wife, a mother of three, and serving for over 25 years in ministry, Janice brings a message from the Word full of healing, hope, humor, and refreshment. In her worship, her writing, as a speaker, and in her daily interactions, Janice’s heart beats for women of all ages to know and enjoy the Father’s love, inspiring them to bloom wherever God plants them. For more stories about her journey, both humorous and heart-touching, you can check out her blog, website, or connect with her on Facebook,
Blog: janiceyancey.wordpress.com Facebook: JaniceMortonYancey or Renew Our Hearts, Twitter Email: Janice.email@example.com
Looking forward, pressing on and seeking God in every bump and twist in the road.