There is an art form of such for anticipation. How we approach things has a big impact on both the outcome and the way we will exit from the experience.
Let’s talk about a few….
Note from Kip…
This morning I’m anticipating an interview with a company I know very little about, for a job I’m not sure what it is exactly. I have a vague idea, but amid online resume submissions, and posting to job sites in search of my next engagement, this one blindsided me a bit yesterday when they called and asked me to sit for an interview today.
I really didn’t feel comfortable asking the person who made the appointment with me, what this job was for. It would tend to give the impression that I had submitted the resume with no purposeful intent.
If I have submitted my resume, yes, I had reviewed the job posting and felt that the description and requirements were a fairly good match for my experience and temperament. However, there have been so many submissions in the last month that it was impossible to determine with certainty that I had done that, or if this potential employer had simply pulled my resume from a job site and decided to give me a call.
So, I approach with guarded anticipation. I want to understand what they are seeking in a new hire and learn more about who they are, their business, and what they might expect of me.
Later this morning, I will get in my car, drive into Birmingham and sit for the interview.
Three Things Disciples Anticipate
As Christ’s Disciples, we have three primary things that we should be anticipating always. That isn’t to say that we will not have other things that we will anticipate, but these three are assured if we are intent of following the Master.
If we live by the Spirit, let us also keep in step with the Spirit.
Galatians 5:25 (CSB)
If we’ve committed to becoming His Disciple then we are actively seeking direction from the Spirit He has implanted in us at the time that we surrendered our lives to His will.
We expect that through the Word of God and the Spirits revelation of that word to us that He is going to put us where we need to be when we need to be there, doing what He calls us to do. This is our constant anticipation.
Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not rely on your own understanding; in all your ways know him, and he will make your paths straight.
Proverbs 3:5-6 (CSB)
Our trust is that God’s going to provide the direction for us at the time that is appropriate. The Disciple is not going to place confidence in their own understanding of circumstances but instead yield to God with the confidence that when the time comes the instruction will be there. They are also committed to following that direction when it comes.
And he himself gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, some pastors and teachers, equipping the saints for the work of ministry, to build up the body of Christ, until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of God’s Son, growing into maturity with a stature measured by Christ’s fullness.
Ephesians 4:11-13 (CSB)
Yes, some the Lord directs to fill various roles in the Body of Christ, but to all, he instructs us to be His Disciples (Matt 28:19-20). Each and every disciple should be anticipating growth in Christ and gaining maturity over time.
This is such a simple thing but in practice appears to be difficult for many.
We can become comfortable in our surroundings and the day to day routine that establishes itself for us. While some habits are beneficial, we should be aware that they are there and in fact are promoting the goal of becoming more like the Master day by day.
Reading the Word of God and meditating on it is critical to growth. Fellowship with other believers is as well. Being obedient to the Spirits direction, noted above, is also.
Brothers and sisters, don’t be childish in your thinking, but be infants in regard to evil and adult in your thinking.
1 Corinthians 14:20 (CSB)
We should be anticipating growth if we are doing the things that we should as Disciples of Jesus.
For we say this to you by a word from the Lord: We who are still alive at the Lord’s coming will certainly not precede those who have fallen asleep. For the Lord himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the archangel’s voice, and with the trumpet of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. Then we who are still alive, who are left, will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and so we will always be with the Lord.
1 Thessalonians 4:15-17 (CSB)
There are many that anticipate the Second Coming of our Lord. This isn’t necessarily inappropriate, but I would suggest to the Disciple that focus on the event only is a bit counterproductive to their purpose.
It is a wonderful thing to be aware and consider what God has laid out for Christ’s return and the events surrounding that, but when I say that it can be counterproductive I am pointing out that the Disciple has work to do in order to prepare for that event.
The Disciple should anticipate the Second Coming and as a result of that anticipation, we should be seeking to do our part to fulfill The Great Commission Jesus gave us. We need to be focused on spreading His Gospel to every nation and all people, making Disciples of Christ in every corner, teaching them to also produce Disciples.
Be ready for service and have your lamps lit. You are to be like people waiting for their master to return from the wedding banquet so that when he comes and knocks, they can open the door for him at once. Blessed will be those servants the master finds alert when he comes. Truly I tell you, he will get ready, have them recline at the table, then come and serve them. If he comes in the middle of the night, or even near dawn, and finds them alert, blessed are those servants.
Luke 12:35-38 (CSB)
In anticipation of His return, we should be doing what He calls us to, whatever that call is, in its appropriate time.
Just Can’t Wait
But we must. We must wait and watch. Do the Masters business until He returns for His Bride. What an anticipation!