1. the act of anticipating or the state of being anticipated.
2. realization in advance; foretaste.
3. expectation or hope.
4. previous notion; slight previous impression.
5. intuition, foreknowledge, or prescience.
Anticipation is a wonderful feeling but there are times that it carries some idea of fear. As I am writing this today, I think about some of the times that I have felt the emotion of anticipation the most in my life. I remember some of the Christmases as a small boy always wondering what would be in the packages all wrapped in festive paper with bows on them. I, along with my sisters, would sit and guess what was in the ones with our names on them. Those are some fond memories of anticipating the big day that we would get to open the gifts and see if we were right or if the surprise would be even better.
I remember the days leading up to my wedding and anticipating the journey that was in front of me called “married life.” I remember being nervous and yet excited all at the same time. I had questions so many questions that were unanswered by anyone and yet the anticipation was driving me to continue on the journey in front of me.I remember the birth of my children and the anticipation that was all around those days. Wondering when my wife would go into labor…Wondering if I would be a good dad…Wondering if my kids would be healthy…Wondering how my life was going to change…What Great Anticipation!!
Many of the emotions that I felt on each of those occasions and many more like them are the emotions I am experiencing now. Over the past several weeks I have been on a adventure with God in which He has been stripping things away in my life that were being an hinderance to my relationship with Him. He has led me to be more diligent in so many areas of my life. He is changing my thought patterns. He is changing my ideas and ideals about ministry. He is changing my desires along with my values. He is bringing me to a place that I feel stripped down in front of Him and He is asking me “Am I enough?”
Many times in scripture before God does something that only He can do, He causes people to see their own inadequacies just so they will recognize God as the author of what is happening. I have been thinking about the disciples as they were with Jesus in John 11. Jesus was told his friend Lazarus was sick. So instead of getting up to go to Bethany, Jesus stayed where He was for two days. He told the disciples that Lazarus’ illness was for the glory of God. This is where I begin to add my thoughts about what the disciples were thinking at this time. When Jesus said it was time to go to Judea, His followers began to question what He was doing. Jesus tried to share with them what He was going to do, but no one understood. As they journeyed to the town of Bethany, can you imagine the anticipation of what was next? They were afraid of the Jewish leaders and therefore, afraid that they might die. They loved Jesus and believed that Jesus was going to do something special, but they had no idea of what it was going to be. Even up to the point of Jesus telling Mary and Martha that He was the Resurrection, no one understood He was about the resurrect Lazarus. He had been dead for four days…Martha said that there would be a stench…Could Jesus really do something with a dead man?
You know the end of this story. Jesus called Lazarus out of the grave and he lived again. Was what Jesus did on that day greater than what anyone else thought He could do? Was there an excitement that followed this wonderful miracle? Of course to both of these questions!!!
You see anticipation carries with it expectation of something special happening. It also carries with it fear of change. I have both today. Am I ready to see the miracle today? Am I prepared for the work that God is going to do so that He gets the glory?
What an anticipation of what God is going to do!!!! Do you feel it? Are you ready?
I would love to hear your thoughts today.