As humans we all have a certain set of expectations on how our life is supposed to be, how it's all supposed to turn out, what we deserve out of life, etc.. but most of the time it's not what you expect and some of the time it's beyond what you yourself could have imagined. It starts at a young age and is influenced by our personal experiences. I see it and hear it from my kids, what they want for their future, what they expect to happen; like my daughter saying she wants to have only sons because daughters are too hard, and my son saying what age he'll marry...I just nod my head and pray for the best knowing that life has lots of twists and turns. We all do it. We create a story, a scene in our head of how our life is supposed to be and many times we are disappointed because life just doesn't meet our expectations; it could be a job, a marriage, our kids, even friendships. At one point after years of disappointment in one area of my life, I decided to either have very low expectations or to have no expectations of anything or anyone because then I would never be disappointed and anything above zero would be a bonus. I'm not sure that's the best way to think.
There are two words that are closely tied together, expectation (a strong belief that something will happen), and hope (a feeling of expectation and desire for a certain thing to happen). They almost sound the same don't you think? Joyce Meyer says, 'Hope is favorable and confident expectation; it's an expectant attitude that something good is going to happen and things will work out, no matter what situation we're facing.' The difference between the two words seems minuscule and huge at the same time; what sounds better, 'I'm expecting a better story,' or 'I'm hoping for a better story'? I think I can live without having expectations but there is no way I can live without having hope.
My story isn't at all what I was expecting but without hope (and the love of family and friends) I don't think I could stay sane. I didn't expect cancer or divorce, but I also didn't expect the awesome twists and turns, the people, the joy, the love, and even the heartache that has met me along the way but alas, always an alternate hope-filled ending.