Summary: This sermon is for Valentine’s Day. It focuses on the great expectations we have and how we shouldn’t let them blind us to the great things we are actually receiving.
Now Naaman was commander of the army of the king of Aram. He was a great man in the sight of his master and highly regarded, because through him the LORD had given victory to Aram. He was a valiant soldier, but he had leprosy. 2 Now bands from Aram had gone out and had taken captive a young girl from Israel, and she served Naaman’s wife. 3 She said to her mistress, "If only my master would see the prophet who is in Samaria! He would cure him of his leprosy." 4 Naaman went to his master and told him what the girl from Israel had said. 5 "By all means, go," the king of Aram replied. "I will send a letter to the king of Israel." So Naaman left, taking with him ten talents of silver, six thousand shekels of gold and ten sets of clothing. 6 The letter that he took to the king of Israel read: "With this letter I am sending my servant Naaman to you so that you may cure him of his leprosy." 7 As soon as the king of Israel read the letter, he tore his robes and said, "Am I God? Can I kill and bring back to life? Why does this fellow send someone to me to be cured of his leprosy? See how he is trying to pick a quarrel with me!" 8 When Elisha the man of God heard that the king of Israel had torn his robes, he sent him this message: "Why have you torn your robes? Have the man come to me and he will know that there is a prophet in Israel."
9 So Naaman went with his horses and chariots and stopped at the door of Elisha’s house. 10 Elisha sent a messenger to say to him, "Go, wash yourself seven times in the Jordan, and your flesh will be restored and you will be cleansed." 11 But Naaman went away angry and said, "I thought that he would surely come out to me and stand and call on the name of the LORD his God, wave his hand over the spot and cure me of my leprosy. 12 Are not Abana and Pharpar, the rivers of Damascus, better than any of the waters of Israel? Couldn’t I wash in them and be cleansed?" So he turned and went off in a rage. 13 Naaman’s servants went to him and said, "My father, if the prophet had told you to do some great thing, would you not have done it? How much more, then, when he tells you, ’Wash and be cleansed’!" 14 So he went down and dipped himself in the Jordan seven times, as the man of God had told him, and his flesh was restored and became clean like that of a young boy.
My wife Alyssa is up front in a chair.
START powerpoint (love song???) Beautiful Soul!
o SLIDE - Feb 14th, 2009 [HEART]
o SLIDE - Great expectations of Valentines Day [Alyssa nods appreciatively after each upcoming slide]
- SLIDE - Amazing Dinner
- SLIDE - Romantic Getaway
- SLIDE - Expensive Jewelry
- SLIDE - Emptying the Dishwasher
o SLIDE - The Husband’s Attempts
- The act of giving flowers [Alyssa shakes her head]
- The act of giving chocolates [Alyssa rolls her eyes at the lame attempt]
- The act of a card [Alyssa doesn’t even bother reading it]
- The act of playing the Guitar [Alyssa covers her ears]
- The act of giving your heart [Alyssa finally accepts the gift]
o They take hands, the husband begs a kiss and gets one!
o END DRAMA
Well, congratulations on surviving... er... I mean, celebrating another Valentines Day. Tell you what, I would like to see how many of you ladies out there could see a small tiny part of yourself in the first part of that drama? Go ahead and raise your hand. Now guys, how many of you see just a tiny... tiny part of yourself in the second part of that drama. I saw a couple of wives elbows there. Does anyone else see a problem here?
Valentines day is a day filled with great expectations, and it is hard to live up to those expectations. Women hope that the lug of a man who hasn’t bothered to put the toilet seat up for the past 355 days of the year, who’s left his socks on the floor, who has gone straight to the couch after supper, who hasn’t hugged, kissed, or said I love you in ages, will on this one day... just ONE day step up to the plate and show his love!
And sometimes, definitely not always, but sometimes those great expectations can blind us... we hope and expect one thing, but when we get something else, we reject it because it’s not what we had hoped... not what we had wanted. In the example of our drama, every single attempt by me was a way in which I was saying I love you. Alyssa may not have heard it, but it doesn’t change the fact that "I love you" was being said. It really is too bad... all the "I love you’s" we miss every day because we aren’t listening... or we simply expect the "I love you" to come in a different form. In our drama, Alyssa had built up her dream day, and I wasn’t living up to it... and we both almost missed the boat. When things get built up that big... there is no possible way anyone can live up to those standards; either by our own failings, and sometimes by no failing of our own.