As I was walking home from school the other day, I noticed this tree (the one above this post) that has started to bloom. The thing that struck me the most was the fact that the pink buds bloomed into white flowers…WHAT?! I would expect pink buds to bloom into pink flowers, but the tree had different plans that were different from my own expectations.
We live in a world of expectation. We expect to get good grades when we work hard. We expect to learn something when we go to class. We expect responses to our emails, text messages, and phone calls. We expect pink buds to blossom into pink flowers, but things don’t always go the way we expect them to, especially when our lives are in Someone else’s hands. In his book Mere Christianity, C.S. Lewis writes, “Imagine yourself as a living house. God comes in to rebuild that house. At first, perhaps, you can understand what He is doing. He is getting the drains right and stopping the leaks in the roof and so on; you knew that those jobs needed doing and so you are not surprised. But presently He starts knocking the house about in a way that hurts abominably and does not seem to make any sense. What on earth is He up to? The explanation is that He is building quite a different house from the one you thought of – throwing out a new wing here, putting on an extra floor there, running up towers, making courtyards. You thought you were being made into a decent little cottage: but He is building a palace. He intends to come and live in it Himself.”
Oftentimes, we expect God to go along with our own plans, believing with all of our hearts that since we have plans to begin with, they must be from God. But perhaps, God leads us to places that meet our expectations to show us that what is beyond those places will exceed our greatest expectations. We’re going to bloom no matter what, but not always in the ways we think we will. Recall the tree pictured above. Are the white blooms any less beautiful because they didn’t turn out in the way I thought they would? By no means! We may hope for things to turn out they way we think they should, but the best hope we can have is in the Creator of all things, the Divine artist, who gives us ample reasons to be hope-filled, knowing that our expectations will be exceeded every time, even if we can’t see it at first glance.