When Lloyd and I were first starting out in ministry, I used to tell the wives that I didn’t trust my husband, but in God. This sentence worried some people since they didn’t comprehend what I meant. I don’t mean to imply that I expect my spouse to behave badly; rather, I recognize that my husband will never be able to meet every demand in my life since he, like me, is made of flesh. Hubby will, without a doubt, fail me in some way, and I will, without a doubt, fail him in some way! Just cannot meet EVERY need in my life.
Please keep in mind that I am married to possibly the best man on the face of the planet! He is kind to me; he is loving to me; he is patient with me; he tenderly cares for me; he is careful to protect me; he is a good friend to me; he is my very best friend; he makes me laugh; he rejoices in my joys; he feels my sorrows, and though I truly believe Lloyd is the perfect guy for me — he, my LSC, is certainly Is Not Perfect!
When we embarked on this journey as husband and wife, we made intentional decisions to return the marriage to God. We understood early in our marriage that it was best to have no expectations from one another and to rely solely on God in all circumstances. This approach, I believe, has given us both a great deal of pleasure in the ways we bless each other. That may not be clear, so allow me to explain. — In general, Lloyd and I have duties in our marriage: Lloyd takes care of the car, I make sure there is nutritious food in the house, Lloyd will be the provider, I will be the counselor, and so on. While Lloyd and I were both aware of these expectations, none of us held the other to them. We never assumed that the other would be ideal for any given role. He committed to love me as Christ loves the church, and I committed to respect and build Him up as the head of my family; and we agreed that the rest would be taken care of by Our Father’s lead and His guidance. What has happened in these 28 years and 6 months is that when I cook for Lloyd, he is truly grateful because he knows I could choose not to. I am sincerely grateful when Lloyd has the car serviced and fills it with gas because I know he could chose not to. Now, neither of us has ever chosen not to serve the other, but because our trust is in God, not in each other, each act of love is a true blessing that is warmly accepted and graciously offered!
Because it worked in our marriage, we applied it to our relationship with God in all things. Rather than expecting Him to meet our expectations, we just rely on Him to do what He does as God and Father. Instead of living with a sense of entitlement to His benefits, we choose to walk with a sense of humility before Him, setting our petitions before Him and leaving them there. We transitioned from saying “”Good job, God!” to “Wow! Thank you, Father, for your generous care for us!”
Many Christians have reduced God to the role of “Genie.” We declare, “God is a Healer,” as if our words demand that He heal, rather than saying, “God is a Healer,” and putting that ailment at His feet, expecting only that His will be done, and bracing ourselves to be startled by the extravagant nature of His tremendous love. We do the same with each of God’s attributes, such as Provider, Peace Giver, Keeper, and so on. What if we made the decision to expect that we can rely on Him and determine that no matter what happens, we will respond with heartfelt gratitude? He has informed us that we will face trials and should rejoice in them; how can we do so truly if we are continually expecting Him to fix them to our liking rather than expecting Him to work them out for our good and His glory?! I’m not suggesting it’ll be easy, but I believe He’ll give us the strength we need to respond correctly. He is the King! He is right! His ways are all good and holy! Will you not put your trust in Him today? Expect nothing; only rely on God!