Expect Great Things
Duane Vander Klok
Two blind men came to Jesus calling, Have mercy on us Son of David! Jesus replied to them, “According to your faith let it be done to you.” And He touched their eyes and they were healed.
These men came to Jesus expecting that He would heal them and, as they exercised their faith, they were healed. They knew that their blindness was not part of God’s plan for their lives and that the Son of God had the power to heal them — they expected to receive the blessing God had for them.
Too often believers do not expect to receive the blessing of God and the good plans He has for them. That is like believing they are meant to be blind for their entire lives instead of realizing that God wants them to be healed and whole. We need to take God at His Word and expect great things from Him!
In John 10:10 ESV, Jesus said, “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly.” The great plans God has for you are vastly different than the plans of the devil. Too often, believers live with a barely-get-by or survival mentality. They expect to be defeated, victimized, or only able to simply survive. But God has so much more for us. His vision is that we live blessed, favored, forgiven, empowered, victorious, stomping on the enemy, removing mountains, and carrying the Holy Spirit wherever we go! Don’t allow wrong expectations to keep you from the abundant life God has for you.
God paints a picture of how He wants to bless His children when He tells the Israelites in Deuteronomy 28:2 NKJV: “And all these blessings shall come upon you and overtake you, because you obey the voice of the Lord your God.” You cannot outrun the love and blessings of God!
We need to grab hold of what God says about us and have the same vision that He has for our lives. When we do that, there will be breakthrough. When our expectations line up with His plans, we begin to see how God is moving in our life. We will see the doors that He opens and shuts as well as the power and freedom He wants us to walk in. You can be sure that He will walk with you in the purpose that He has for your life.
Align Your Heart
In order to set our expectations on the plans God has for us, we need to first align our thoughts and vision with His. The thoughts of our hearts determine our actions, and our vision for our lives determines where we go. Proverbs 4:23 NLT says it this way: Guard your heart above all else, for it determines the course of your life. Truly, your actions and vision are an overflow of what is in your heart.
Unfortunately, many Christians do not know the abundance, joy, peace, and purpose that God intends for them to experience. Their hearts are still filled with fear, unbelief, and uncertainty because they have not planted God’s thoughts in their heart. Because there are many voices competing for our hearts, we need to choose whether to listen to the enemy, the world, our flesh, or God. When we listen to the wrong voices, our expectations do not line up with God’s great plans for our lives and we miss what He has for us. Take care to guard your heart and listen to His voice.
Notice that we can only know His thoughts and plans by seeking Him. In Isaiah 55:8-9 God says, “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the Lord. “As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways and My thoughts than your thoughts.” His thoughts are not of this world — they are not driven or swayed by culture, people, or the enemy. He is not saying that we are unable to know and understand His thoughts, but He is saying we will not find them by listening to the neighbors or television. The only way to know and understand the thoughts of God is to study His Word. Through His Word, He will show you who He is, who He made you to be, and the authority you have in Christ. As you listen to His voice over any other, your thoughts and faith will begin to line up with His plans. Plant His Word in your heart every day and you will begin to see the fullness and abundance that He has for you.
When you plant His Word, it will also destroy the lies of the enemy that have entered your heart. In Jeremiah 23:29, God says His Word is “like a fire.” It will burn away all of the lies and thoughts of the enemy. Let His thoughts and plans raise your expectations, create the vision for your future, and crush the lies of the enemy!
Through the Trials
God has a great plan for your life filled with joy, purpose, and victory, but the enemy also has a plan to steal, kill, and destroy. 1 Peter 5:8 says, Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. God wants to bless us, but our enemy is always looking to oppose God’s plans. As believers, we will face times of hardship and trials, but God will never leave or forsake us even when we are under attack.
Sometimes we will even face strong attacks of the enemy when we are faithfully serving God. But Romans 8:28 says, And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose. Know that God can work all things together for your good. Even in the midst of your greatest hardship, remember that God has a plan to bless you and bring you closer to Him.
During my time as a missionary, my wife and I left our home in Mexico to visit our families for a few days, but when we returned we found that half of our congregation had left the church. It was a very difficult time, and I wanted to quit the ministry. But God turned my bad situation around for good — He turned my misery into my ministry. Because of the trial I went through during that time, I now have a passion for helping pastors who are struggling in their ministry. The enemy tried to steal my ministry and destroy my relationship with God, but God took those evil plans and used them for good!
Even when we are in the midst of our hardest trials, God still has a plan for us. When Daniel was thrown in the lion’s den, it looked like the end, but God brought him through. When David was facing Goliath, it looked like the end, but God gave him victory. And when Jesus died on the cross, it looked like the end, but God defeated death and the enemy! No matter where you are, God has a plan for your life. Your expectations and faith in Him do not change based on your circumstances because God is the same yesterday, today, and forever, and He works all things together for your good.
Align your faith with the great plans God has for your life. Raise your expectations to what He has for you by planting His thoughts in your heart and resisting the attacks of the enemy. When your faith lines up with God’s vision for your life, just like the faith of the blind men, your eyes will be opened to see how He is working in you, for you and through you!