The Bible reveals that Satan approaches us with arguments raised up against the knowledge of God (2 Cor. 10:5). In Greek, these arguments are logismos, which is the word from which we derive "logic."
In other words, Satan attempts to use logic and reasoning to persuade you out of the truth about the good things God says in His Word regarding your situations and who you are.
To do this, the devil points to events or words from the past to create a script that sounds like this: "What's always hurt you will continue to hurt you," or "What you've always struggled with you'll continue to struggle with."
You've probably heard something similar. Satan's goal here is to create an expectation of pain so that you believe what's always happened will continue to happen.
The Consequences of Negative Expectations
I noticed the power of these kinds of expectations through a physical issue with which I recently suffered. For more than a year, I experienced inflammation in my rotator cuff, which caused pain during certain motions. Since I didn't immediately deal with it, as time went on, I began to adapt to the discomfort. I changed the way I put on shirts and jackets and even how I got up out of bed in the morning. Consequently, over time, these changes in my behavior caused other muscles to overcompensate, which eventually settled into a stiff neck!
When I finally visited my doctor, he prescribed a few months of physical therapy. Thankfully, the therapy worked to alleviate the issue. But even after I was better, I realized that because I lived with the pain for so long, I simply expected it to be there. Therefore, I didn't immediately change my behaviors, and so some of the other issues still persisted.
I later learned that in order to experience full healing, I first had to overcome this expectation of pain. That is, I had to intentionally change my mind according to the truth that I was healed. As my expectations changed, then my behaviors began to change, and finally, the other issues also diminished.
Change Your Expectations, Change Your Life
What's true for the physical is often true for the emotional or the spiritual. If you're struggling with some residual effects from a wound many years ago, perhaps you need to consider if there are expectations that you need to change. For example, just because you were once a victim doesn't mean you'll always be a victim. Or just because you were once rejected doesn't mean you'll always be rejected. Yes, you might have suffered through years of pain or disappointment that no longer exist, but complete healing happens when you finally believe that you're healed and change your expectations accordingly.
A powerful Scripture that helps set positive expectations is the declaration of David in the midst of battle: "I believe I will see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living" (Ps. 27:13, MEV). The "land of the living" is right here, right now—in your everyday life. And you ought to make that your declaration, too.
Rather than expect the same ole, same ole, begin to expect to see God's goodness in every area of your life. Walk out your door in the morning in wonder of what great thing might God do today. I promise you that when you begin to change your expectations, you'll begin to change your life.
Kyle Winkler equips people to live in victory. His mobile app, Shut Up, Devil!, is the No. 1 spiritual warfare app; and his recent Scripture confessions album, Experience Freedom, has helped thousands identify with the truths of God's Word. Kyle holds a Master of Divinity in biblical studies from Regent University. Get daily encouragement from Kyle on Facebook and Twitter.
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