How to Pray to God - Strategy to Understand the Secrets of Prayer
All of us have expectations in our lives. We expect things will occur according to our preconceived ideas and plans. Sometimes things do not happen as we expect, and our response to those unexpected events can determine whether or not we miss out on God's best in our lives. To illustrate this point consider the account of Naaman from 2 Kings chapter 5:
2 Kings 5:9-14 (NIV)
9. So Naaman went with his horses and chariots and stopped at the door of Elisha's house.
10. Elisha sent a messenger to say to him, "Go, wash yourself seven times in the Jordan, and your flesh will be restored and you will be cleansed."
11. But Naaman went away angry and said, "I thought that he would surely come out to me and stand and call on the name of the LORD his God, wave his hand over the spot and cure me of my leprosy.
12. Are not Abana and Pharpar, the rivers of Damascus, better than any of the waters of Israel? Couldn't I wash in them and be cleansed?" So he turned and went off in a rage.
13. Naaman's servants went to him and said, "My father, if the prophet had told you to do some great thing, would you not have done it? How much more, then, when he tells you, 'Wash and be cleansed'!"
14. So he went down and dipped himself in the Jordan seven times, as the man of God had told him, and his flesh was restored and became clean like that of a young boy.
Naaman had an expectation that he would be greeted by Elisha the prophet, not Elisha's messenger. Naaman was a highly regarded military leader, he could not believe that the prophet would disregard him. Naaman found himself at a point of decision.
As we see in verse 11-12, Naaman became enraged and left. Naaman was going to let his pride cause him to miss out on God's best in his life. Naaman was more focused on not having his expectations met than he was about his true need for healing. Isn't it ironic how having our expectations unmet can often make us lose sight of the greater needs in our life.
Fortunately for Naaman, his servants were the voice of reason in his life. They brought his attention back to the need for healing. When Naaman considered the truth of their words, he was once again reminded of the reason he had come in the first place. He needed to be healed. In the end it was Naaman's simple obedience to the instructions he had been given that brought about his complete healing...and to think, he nearly missed it, because his expectations were not met.
Today you may have some unmet expectations in your life and just like Naaman you are at a crossroads in your life. Don't lose sight of the greater need that God may be trying to meet in your life. Realize that god wants to meet that greater need, but he may forsake your ego in the process.