My own unfulfilled expectations
Led me to desert places,
Where I thirsted
For finality, and success.
Those occasional oases
Gaslit my senses—
Like mirages moving gracelessly and
Like Psychopathic vindictive personalities
Playing games with my mind,
They caused my feet to falter to lower, ever-slower,
Always flaunting hope,
But in reality, causing duress.
My own expectations
Led me to a doorway—
They led me to my own needs
For self-hatred, self-abasement, and unworthiness,
And they left my soul in pieces
Which was then added to the burden on my back,
So that I could return to glory in my shame and failures
At latter, more appropriate times.
On occasion, I’d fulfil an expectation,
Then replace it with a worse one—
Then I’d drive myself towards
A better conquest, like—
What my weight was,
How my hair looked,
How much disease I’d beaten—
How much book I’d nearly written?
How much exercise would win me
Just a pound less flesh and a
Smaller clothing size;
Which people I’d contacted,
And which people I’d redacted
From my “to do” list—
“Hmm—should I start a business,
Or are there more jobs to which I should apply?”
Each and every expectation
That was born outside Your Kingdom
Was a form of self-imposed insanity
Of my own self-driven, self-design.
All of the above were lies
In which I chose to invest my time—
They were the knowledge that I wasn’t good
But I wasn’t evil,
But that I just hadn’t tried hard enough
To make things right.
The very depths of my being
Were exposed by those judgments—
Those self-inflicted judgments that said,
I was insufficient, ugly, unloveable,
And that I was someone to give up on
When I didn’t fit the mould.
And although You had already taken those judgments from me
And lightened my load,
I decided I knew better
And took them back…
How's that for lack of understanding?
Pretty decent, I’d say.
But You know what?
Now I truly understand…
My own expectations had become my own doorway,
And thus by default, I had rejected You as my Door,
My Gate, and
My Narrow Road.
And then, as I walked in and out of my own sanctuary of self-hatred,
What did You tell me?
“It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle
Than it is for a rich man to enter the Kingdom.”
The Needle was an opening in the city wall,
A camel and a rich man had to bow low to go through it.
Any extra height
Or self-righteousness could not fit—
Would not fit—
Through that very narrow way...
Through the eye of the needle.
Do I take You at Your word
And recognise that I can no longer walk through my own doorway
Of unrealistic expectations,
And across my own deserts of dry,
Wretched, self-hating sands,
Because they do not belong on my back
And they will not fit through Your door?
Do I take you at Your word
And relinquish this form of control—
This control that rises up as self-affliction?
It takes humility to accept that
I am loved unconditionally;
I am forgiven eternally;
I am adopted freely,
And that I am allowing You to foot every single bill on my account.
“I am unworthy!” I say.
“You are choosing the pride of your own self-hatred over Me again,” You say.
“I have chosen you as worthy from before the beginning of time
And all the way through until after time,” You say.
“Are you ready to believe Me?” You say.
Bowed low and separated
From the pride of my own ability to worry about things
That in actuality have nothing to do with You
And everything to do with my own self-centredness,
And I realise that for You to be my Gateway and my door;
I must relinquish all of my unrealistic expectations, because
You are the Only One who can fulfil any unrealistic expectations I have about...
And as for what You require?
You are the only one who says:
“Come as You are—
Just you, and only you,
And drink of Me.
Because I am
The living water
I am your Bread of life.”
As for my own unfulfilled, unrealistic expectations?
I let them all go,
As well as the puffed up pride
That walked alongside them...
And I fall forwards
Through the eye of the needle.
Photo by amirali mirhashemian on Unsplash