Learning to Grieve Expectations

It's October. That time of year we realize another year is nearly finished and added to the pages of our stories. It's the time of year we reflect on what has been, and what we hope is to come. This year, we've settled into life with two toddlers. And I love it.

But as I've packed our baby things away, there is a part of me that sighs. While we can never say for certain what the Lord planned for our futures, for now our lives are full with two. I never thought I'd say that.

Learning to grieve expectations

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Has the Lord ever asked you to surrender a dream or plan to Him? Perhaps He simply asked you to, or maybe circumstances drove the surrender.

Either way, it is a painful process.

It's painful because we must grieve the loss of the plan, dream, or expectation. It has always sounded a little funny to me to say that; but over the course of a few surrenders, I've learned that it's ok to grieve what we had hoped for. In fact, I think it is necessary.

While I was pregnant with Gator and facing some serious health concerns, the Lord asked me to surrender my plans for our family size to Him. It was hard and painful, and required grieving the loss of what I'd hoped for. But He was also present in the grieving process. I think He knows what it is to grieve the loss of what you planned or hoped.

When Mary reached the place where Jesus was and saw him, she fell at his feet and said, “Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died.”When Jesus saw her weeping, and the Jews who had come along with her also weeping, he was deeply moved in spirit and troubled.“Where have you laid him?” he asked. “Come and see, Lord,” they replied. Jesus wept. -John 11:32-35

I think Jesus hurt for and wept for His friends as they were grieving, but I also think He wept and grieved the fact that this was not the way things were supposed to be. This hadn't been the plan. Death was not supposed to touch us, it was not supposed to hurt us as it does.

Of course, Jesus also knew that He had come to bring hope and conquer death, but I think it is part of the human experience to grieve what is in order to accept the hope of what is coming.

You cannot fully appreciate the beauty of a sunrise without the darkness of the night. 

And so as I've packed away our baby things my heart sighs slightly because surrender meant knowing we may never need our baby things again. But I am also content here with what He has given me. And I know I lived that season to the fullest. I learned to look for firsts and lasts, to embrace the future, and to let them take priority over distractions.

We enjoyed, struggled, laughed and cried our way through the baby season. And while I learned many lessons, I can't say I ever fully learned how to survive on no sleep. ;-)

So why am I sharing all of this?

Because I believe God has called us each to our own surrenders. If you are not facing one now, you will be. And I want you to know that it is ok to grieve--it's ok to tell Him what He is asking isn't what you planned. It's ok to wrestle through it. You'll find Him faithful, I promise.

You cannot fully appreciate the beauty of a sunrise without the darkness of the night.

And when you emerge from the night of a surrender, you will find the sunrise. And the sunrise reminds you that you may not know what the future holds, but you know exactly Who is holding the future.

{Post linked at The Deliberate Mom}

If you are going through a season of change and grieving some losses (as we went through recently), I highly recommend reading Girl Meets Change by Kristen Strong.

It was exactly the encouragement and truths I needed for the season we are in. In fact, I highlighted it like mad and read it over a couple times. You can find both the Kindle and paperback edition here.

Be encouraged friend,


P.S. I'd love to connect with you! You can find me on Facebook & Twitter!

FaithCarrie4 Comments