Imagine a girlfriend saying to her boyfriend, “If you really loved me, you’d win the lottery.”
You’re already hoping that he’ll find someone better to spend his time with, aren’t you? Obviously that is outside of his control. There’s no way he could arrange that, and if he could, wouldn’t he have already?
Sometimes we get frustrated with people because we are unrealistic in what we expect them to be. If you go to McDonald’s and ask for an oil change, you’re going to be disappointed. A husband who expects his wife to also be his mother is in for a world of hurt, as this poem describes:
He didn’t like the casserole
And he didn’t like my cake.
My biscuits were too hard,
Not like his mother used to make.
I didn’t perk the coffee right
He didn’t like the stew.
I didn’t mend his socks,
The way his mother used to do.
I pondered for an answer
I was looking for a clue.
Then I turned around and smacked him,
Like his Mother used to do.
Impossible expectations always guarantee failure and frustration. People cannot give us what they do not have. Don’t expect your children to be perfect when you’re not. Don’t expect everyone else to always be perfectly kind when it’s okay for you to be a grouch because you’re having a bad day.
The only place you can expect perfection is from God. “For God alone, O my soul, wait in silence, for my hope is from him.” (Psalm 62:5). “The hope of the righteous brings joy, but the expectation of the wicked will perish.” (Proverbs 10:28).
Let’s have high expectations for each other—but not impossible ones!