Summary: On the night before his death, our Lord prayed to his Father and states a couple of expectations he has for His Church
Introduction: Play Video Clip “Somewhere over the Rainbow” WIZARD OF OZ
Somewhere over the rainbow way up high,
There’s a land that I heard of once in a lullaby.
Somewhere over the rainbow skies are blue,
And the dreams that you dare to dream really do come true.
Someday I’ll wish upon a star and wake up where the clouds are far behind me.
Where troubles melt like lemon drops Away above the chimney top that’s where you’ll find me.
Somewhere over the rainbow Bluebirds fly.
Birds fly over the rainbow. Why then, oh why can’t I?
If happy little bluebirds fly beyond the rainbow why, oh why can’t I?
Poor Dorothy – She had dreams and expectations did she not?
• She wanted to fly above the Rainbow
• She wanted more for her life
• In her dreams she saw a world that was passing her by
• If there is anyone who had great expectations it was Dorothy
BUT DOROTHY IS NOT ALONE – We all have Great Expectations in our life!
We have expectations about a new job, a vacation, new opportunities, upcoming events – we even have expectations about our church.
OBSERVATIONS ABOUT EXPECTATIONS
1. Most expectations are over rated – normally the expectation is greater than the event itself. The Hype is often more exciting then the real experience.
• Dream Vacation
2. Expectations can give us both optimism and pessimism
• For Dorothy had an expectation of a better place and that gave her a dream of something far better to strive for, it was one of optimism.
• Your expectations will have the same affect – if you expect something good to happen – chances are your outlook on life will find the good. But if you expect something bad your life will find the problem.
3. Expectations can consume us
Let’s face it we have all seen the coach or sports team who was ran out of town because he could not meet the unrealistic expectations of fans. Our Expectations can be so great that no one can live up to them nor can they ever really be fulfilled.
King Solomon was faced with that dilemma. He sought to find happiness in a variety of ways only to come to the conclusion it was a chasing of the wind – in other words thee things of life could not meet his expectations.
Study the gospels and you soon discover people had trouble with Jesus because of the great expectations
THINK ABOUT IT
• To the Jewish nation, they were expecting a military leader to conquer Rome, not one to conquer their hearts
• The religious leaders were expecting a messiah who would validate their rules and traditions, not upset the status quo
Jesus was completely opposite of their expectations
• His disciples were fishermen and outcast
• His friends were poor or worst SINNERS!
• His teaching were revolutionary
• Even His death was unexpected – death by crucifixion But that led to the greatest unexpected event – His resurrection
Jesus was not about meeting man’s expectations – he was about setting up expectations for his kingdom. In John 17 Jesus sets out a set of expectations for his disciples and for us.
READ TEXT John 17:20-26,
20) "My prayer is not for them alone. I pray also for those who will believe in me through their message, 21) that all of them may be one, Father, just as you are in me and I am in you. May they also be in us so that the world may believe that you have sent me. 22) I have given them the glory that you gave me, that they may be one as we are one: 23) I in them and you in me. May they be brought to complete unity to let the world know that you sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me.
24) "Father, I want those you have given me to be with me where I am, and to see my glory, the glory you have given me because you loved me before the creation of the world. 25) "Righteous Father, though the world does not know you, I know you, and they know that you have sent me. 26) I have made you known to them, and will continue to make you known in order that the love you have for me may be in them and that I myself may be in them."
It is no accident Jesus prays for unity – this is a frontline issue for the church today.
Why do so many churches struggle with growth and major on the minors? They have forgotten a key concept from our Restoration Heritage. In essentials unity, in non-essentials liberty, in all things love.