When you have an experience that results from poor choices on your part, there always seems to be someone around to ask, “Well, what did you expect?” But with a little different intonation, the same question can be asked when something totally surprising takes place. “What did you expect”? If this wasn’t what you expected, what DID you expect?
We are told that the people in first century Judea and Galilee didn’t accept Jesus as their Messiah because He wasn’t what they were expecting. My question to those folks is, “What DID you expect?” We are told that they expected a deliverer to free them from Roman tyranny. Maybe they expected a king riding on a white charger. Whatever it was they expected, they didn’t expect the “Suffering Servant.” In this Advent season, I am asking, “Why not?” The prophecies of the coming of the Messiah were laid out as clearly as they possibly could be. It seems that it was a clear case of “selective interpretation.” My mind can grasp a conquering hero, a Superman of sorts; but I can’t grasp One coming to die.
Sometimes God does the unexpected; but more often He does what is perfectly natural for God to do. What do we expect God to do? Sometimes we ignore the obvious because we are looking for something that will fit in our limited view of things. Let’s not be surprised when God shows up in ways that most of us aren’t expecting. You know, He does that sometimes!