When It’s Time To Change Expectations

May 2, 2014 | Faith

I should write some inspiring word that’s meticulously crafted. I’m speaking at two retreats tomorrow and I should probably have those five great points that make a winning blog post.

But I can’t. There’s so much on my heart I’d betray myself and you if I did. I find myself in an odd place  – a place of complete love for God, desiring to drink in His fullness and the power of who He is, to be about His work one hundred percent of the time, and also in a place of messiness, meaningless and a world so in need of Him.

Meaningless in the news coverage of an NBA franchise owner who might lose his team.

Meaningless that a portion of our country lost everything and it’s on the back page of the paper.

Meaningless in hearing a child saying over and over again that no one wants her and I can’t give her the hope of Jesus Christ.

Meaningless of affluence, of ignorance, and everything in between that isn’t what God calls us to.

Solomon that similar thoughts – everything is meaningless under the sun. 

Ecclesiastes 3 tells me there’s a time for everything.

  • A time for weeping and a time to laugh,
  • a time to plant and a time to uproot.
  • A time to mourn and a time to dance,
  • a time to be silent and a time to speak

Ecclesiastes 3:14 says, “I know that everything God does will endure forever, nothing will be added to or be taken away.”

This gives me hope and strength in the sovereignty and power of God. I know these words are true. Everything God does in moments, big and small, will endure forever. 

From these words, I know everything isn’t meaningless.

They allow me to find God in simple moments, when a parent is willing to get their child the help they need. When a child says, “God’s so busy, so I don’t pray about my problems, I just pray about Grandma” and I take a risk in  telling him God isn’t too busy to hear his problems, too.

In moments when I look into the tear-filled eyes of a young black boy because his pain is too great to put into words.

I feel crippled.

Crippled by the status quo, what’s politically correct, what’s theologically appropriate to talk about in church settings. Crippled by affluence that masks the needs and the ability for God to work in His fullness.

If there’s a time for everything, I’m ready for the time of God’s power to burst forth from His people and from His churches. I’m ready for a revival to come from the people of God who will believe in the powerful work God wants to do – through you, through me, through each of us.

God’s not dead and heaven is for real...not just on the movie screen. I wonder if He’s asking us to move outside our comfort zone. If we believe He is who He says He is, then let’s get going.

What has God been whispering for you to do? Have you heard Him nudge your heart to act on something that seems ridiculous, out of the ordinary, against the status quo? Join me by believing the power of God in stepping out.   When it’s His doing, nothing can be added to it and nothing taken away (Eccliastes 3: 14).

Now is the time – what has God been calling you to do?

Oh, Lord Jesus, will you cause our hearts to listen to what you desire us to do that’s out of the ordinary, that you want us to act on? Will you help us believe in your power that’s bigger than our fears? Will you draw each reader to ask you, “Lord, what is it time for me to do?” Thank you that you meet our every need (Phil 4:19)

Will you share what God is nudging you to do?


Simple Secrets For A Compelling Life

Do you feel trapped in a chaotic, relentless, demanding lifestyle? No matter where you live or what season of life you’re in, you can find inspiration from the simpler life. 


  1. Janette

    Thank you…you seemed to write my heart today.. Thank you

  2. Angela Kozinski

    How ironic. This post is completely on point with my current bible study – Conversion: Following the Call of Christ. This week we discussed Jonah – who we all know tried to run from God’s call and ended up in total darkness (“belly of a fish”)! The truth is, often times, the darkness is God’s vehicle to redirect us. What do we do in the darkness? Wallow in our misfortunes and wonder why nothing ever goes our way, or pray for God’s help…..that our free will to be aligned with HIS will. The secular world is all about self-direction, self-motivation, self in general. The “I’ve got this” mentality. Being Christ-centered versus self-centered helps us to find the meaning in the “meaningless,” just as you have pointed out. You are not crippled, Brenda. You are a disciple. And you are following the call of Christ. And when you share these words and these concerns, you are prompting others to give up their will and rest their hearts in His which is what He so desires – as your friend Lidia pointed out above.

    p.s. I did learn a little something new about this story I thought I knew so well. Jonah wasn’t running away from God’s call because he was scared, or nervous, or tired or any other of a thousand excuses. He was denying God’s call because he disliked the Ninevites, and he knew God would be merciful and forgive the people once they repented. Truth is, Jonah, at the time, would have rather seen them destroyed versus saved. Sound familiar? Look at today’s society. How often do persons/groups/communities, etc. hope for the worst for others because they don’t like them or because their beliefs don’t align. Even “Christians” who judge others’ behaviors. They will know we are Christians by our love, not our judgement, nor indifference.

    “Tolerance applies to persons, but never to principles. Intolerance applies to principles, but never to persons.” – Ven. Fulton J. Sheen


    • Brenda L. Yoder

      Thank you, Ang. These words mean so much.

  3. crownofglory

    What a heart stirring post this is. In this response let me put into words what has been brewing in my heart today, dear Brenda: To move outside the comfort zone is something Abba Father has asked me to do time and time again. Just when something gets too comfortable for me, I get the nudge to fold up my tent and move on. Not in a literal way of course. But just the inner discontent, the longing for something new, or something more. Our God… He knows just how prone our hearts are to settle down. But Father wants us to taste what it is like to live in a tent where there is no sense of permanence. Because really, permanence is not His plan for us. He created us for pilgrimage, a holy restlessness… a seeking for the deeper things of God. Indeed, our hearts are restless until they find true rest in God alone.

    • Brenda L. Yoder

      Lidia, I receive these words with great challenge and comfort. The image of being in a tent where there is no permanence speaks deeply to me, even in the shadows of not knowing what’s next, a possible job loss, many things uncertain. But your words bring comfort to me, and bring boldness to rely more and more on Him. Thank you.

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