Fresh Hope – 2nd January 2018

Yesterday I was driving a long distance home when I noticed a government-endorsed road safety billboard on the side of the road. The billboard had the words, ‘EXPECT THE UNEXPECTED’ shouting out in bold lettering for drivers passing by. The purpose of the sign was to increase road awareness. The sign was situated on a long and boring road. I am assuming that many drivers have encountered problems on this particular road as they have relaxed with the monotony of the road and lost awareness and then all of a sudden things like animals, or oncoming cars have appeared and caused an accident.

As I continued to drive, I thought about those words – ‘expect the unexpected’. The phrase suggests that we should have an expectation that something we weren’t planning on happening, will happen. It suggests that we shouldn’t live in a place where we assume what is ahead for us, but become prepared for a ‘suddenly’ moment.

God loves a good ‘suddenly’ moment. All throughout scripture we see God move in the most unexpected of ways.

Matthew 8:24 – ‘But suddenly there arose a great storm on the Lake’.

Matthew 17:3 – ‘And suddenly Moses and Elijah appeared to them’.

Matthew 28:9 – ‘And suddenly they saw Jesus coming to meet them’.

Luke 2:9 – ‘…when suddenly an angel of the Lord stood by them and the glory of the Lord shone round them’.

Acts 2:2 – ‘Suddenly there came from the sky a sound like the rushing of a mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting’.

Acts 12:17 – ‘Suddenly an angel of the Lord stood by him’.

Revelation 3:3 – ‘I will come upon you suddenly like a thief’.

2 Chronicles 29:36 – ‘Hezekiah rejoiced, and all the people, because of that which God had prepared for the people: for the thing was done suddenly’.

Isaiah 48:3, ‘I have declared the former things from of old; yes, they went forth out of my mouth, and I showed them: suddenly I did them, and they happened’.

Isaiah 51:5, – ‘Suddenly will my righteousness come near, and my salvation will be shining out like the light; the sea-lands will be waiting for me, and they will put their hope in my strong arm’.

Maybe there are areas in your life that you assume aren’t going to change and you have lost faith for the ‘suddenly’ of God to breakthrough. Rather than getting stuck on a monotonous road, challenge your faith journey by starting to expect the unexpected work of God in your life. This may be by making peace with someone you have issues with, preparing your finances for a moment where you can give suddenly, or perhaps you need to prepare your heart for the voice of God to call you suddenly in a direction you hadn’t planned.

Don’t live with no expectation of God moving in your life. Live with the expectation that God can suddenly show up. The nature of the gospel is all about living in such a way that unless God shows up, what you are attempting to do is bound to fail.

Emma Montesi

A daily devotion for a better way of living.