Great Expectations


Hi, thanks for hanging out with me today.

The other day I had a friend share with me something memorable that happened to him when he was around the age of twelve.

My friend was going to town via the city bus.  As this twelve year old got on the bus he noticed that the only seat available was next to a person that was obviously homeless.

With some trepidation he sat down next to the fellow and did what everyone else does with someone or something they feel uncomfortable around – ignore them.

I’m not totally sure why we tend to ignore unpleasant people or situations.  I think that somehow by ignoring them (or the situation) we hope that they will somehow disappear.

But as my friend sat there, after awhile the homeless fellow he was sitting next to struck up a conversation.  The conversation was pleasant so they began to chit chat.

There was nothing memorable about the conversation until they were nearing the end of the ride.

The homeless fellow quietly turned to this twelve year old and said,

“There are two types of people in the world.  There are people like you and me… and then there’s the rest of the dumb shits.”

When my friend hit the finale of the story he reared back and let out a big belly laugh.  It was so funny because it was the last thing he expected sitting next to the homeless man on the bus.

Unexpected events like this are one of those wonderful life memories that make living fun.

Life can be an amazing adventure… if.  If you are willing to look for the unexpected.

I heard a phrase one time that has really causes me pause.  It constantly reminds me to look at life in a much more open manner.

The phrase is – Approach life with expectancy not expectations.

This is a much more profound statement than one would initially think.


Expectancy is the atmosphere for miracles.
-  Edwin Louis Cole


Human nature’s default is to automatically set expectations.  We set expectations about whether we will enjoy or dislike an event we are invited to.  We have expectations about how we will be treated in a given situation.

You’re probably saying that it’s normal so what’s the big deal.

Having set expectations can be a miserable trap if you are not careful.

This may sound weird to say but expectations are a double-edged sword.  Generally expectations either disappoint you or limit you.

Many of the problems we have in life or in relationships are a result of violated expectations.

We were expecting one thing and another happens.  This dynamic rears its ugly head even in the simplest of situations.

Something as simple as on your way home you’re expecting a relaxing evening at home to just decompress.  All the while your spouse is at home expecting some relief with the kids from a crazy day.  Violated expectations.

That’s the disappointing side of expectations.  But the other edge of the sword is that expectations can easily limit our lives.

First of all, don’t confuse goals with expectations.  Goals are measures of progress or milestones to shoot for.

Expectations fix our mind on a particular end.  The problem is that if not careful our hearts and eyes are so locked on what we expect that we miss the joys around or the marvelous things beyond.

Expectancy is totally different.

It is looking at life or a situation with openness and anticipation.  It’s amazing the joys you will find if you are open arms with expectancy and not locked up by your fixed expectations.

My friend experienced a funny life-long memory because he was just open.

See you Monday.

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