I've kept this a secret long enough. About two months ago, a man walked into the store where I worked. He needed a battery for his cell phone. The man was Chuck Norris!
It was quite exciting... Read on!
The title, photo, and opening paragraph are playing off an expectation. Everything about it is true, but I'm sure you are thinking of a different Chuck Norris than the one in the store that day. The man's name was indeed Chuck Norris, but he is not the one that can cut through a hot knife with butter! This was not the Chuck Norris that ghosts tell stories about as they sit around camp fires! Sorry, couldn't resist! This was just a guy living in our town.
Distorted expectations often set me up for failure. It is easy to wonder why things do not turn out the way we expect, but why don't we question if our expectations were reasonable or right in the first place? Marriages have been destroyed by distorted expectations. People quit their jobs because of distorted expectations. Pastors have been fired or churches split because of distorted expectations. Even adoption comes with distorted expectations.
Both we and our kids had distorted expectations of adoption. There are several red flags we see in our kids, such as a lack of remorse for wrong behavior and other things which combined could make for a difficult future. In a future post, I will expound upon why I believe our kids' expectations were distorted. Here it is enough to say we often feel deep concern and even fear about their future.
In the midst of all this, I must check my expectations about these kids and God's plan for our family. Beth Moore admitted during a recent radio spot that she spent a lot of time earlier in her life wanting God to keep her worst fears from coming to fruition. Essentially, she admitted to judging God's faithfulness by how He met or failed to meet her expectations. This is the ideal by which so many of us live. We want God to act according to our expectations instead of living by His.
It is easy to expect the worst when we see zero remorse in our children. If they have no remorse for hitting their sibling today, will they escalate to something worse as an adult? Is God faithful if this happens?
God is faithful, but we are not. God could intervene and stop my kids from becoming criminals for instance, but then He would be disrupting the plan of salvation which He put into place. Even though God's Spirit draws us and works on our hearts to know Him, He still waits for us to choose surrender. Love is not actually love unless we choose it. As parents, we cannot force our kids to love us or even accept biblical morality as true. I can model it, offer it, and maintain those standards in our home. At some point, my kids have to choose it for themselves, for if they don't, it will never be real.
I also have to guard about filling in the blanks about their future. I don't know what will happen, but God does and I can take comfort in this. God never promised to shape the future to my liking, but He does promise to walk with me through it. I must not fill in the blanks with bad things for it is quite possible that our kids could grow to be well-adjusted, solid followers of Christ who are better parents than I will ever be.
Maybe one of them will learn karate and become the next Church Norris!! Then they will be the one the boogie man checks his closet for at night! Then they will be able to speak French...in Russian! Then they can kill two stones with one bird! (more Chuck Norris Jokes)