by Gloria Furman
Every morning I referee a triathlon.
The contenders must dress themselves, choosing their outfits wisely so as not to be entangled in unnecessary zippers or buttons that might delay them.
They make their way down the stairs and through the hallway. Clinging with one hand on the banister and the other arm flailing in the air for balance, the athletes shuffle-step one stair at a time. At long last they reach the home stretch through the offices downstairs and dodge the desks, chairs, sound equipment, and any random piles of books or containers.
It’s a race to see who gets to turn the light on in the kitchen before we eat breakfast.
In a blur of pink and preschool clumsiness, my daughters stumble to reach the light switch. The victor switches on the light and beams with pride. The loser turns into a hot mess groveling for a rematch.
“You’ll have to wait until lunch for Round 2.” This announcement is met with no small tears of self-pity.
Then in a few moments the sniffling stops and breakfast begins—petty contentions tossed aside. Their insignificant trifles give way to things of import like choosing purple or pink sprinkles to go on their oatmeal.
However. If the wrong color is chosen or the right color is unavailable, the pursuit of triviality continues.
I have my own trivial pursuits
My kids’ transitions from self-pity to contentment and back again just gets me every time. I feel like my heart is going to explode into a show of empathetic fireworks because I completely understand.
Not unlike my preschoolers, I tend to reel from moment-to-moment preoccupied with insignificant, petty things. How many proverbial light switch dramas do I get caught up in every day?
By God’s grace I’ve learned that the only antidote is not merely considering the next petty drama that will charm me, but the weighty, significant truths about who God is, who we are, and what God is up to in all of this.
I need something weighty to lift my soul when all I can manage to care about is whatever appliance isn’t working properly. Or whatever words that someone said that I think is all about me. Or whatever I’m going to do when such-and-such might happen.
Something weighty that lifted my soul the other morning was considering how God saved me and will decisively conform me to the image of his Son. What a relief.
Paul says we ought to look forward to the Day when Jesus will transform our lowly body to be like his glorious, resurrected body. This he will do by the same power that enables him to rule over all things (Phil. 3:21). Jesus’ power is unflinching and indomitable; his image is indelible.
Our transformation is according to God’s plan, which is also unflinching and indomitable. Again, Paul reminds us,
“For those whom he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, in order that he might be the firstborn among many brothers” (Rom. 8:29).
Yes, yes, someday we will be glorified. But… Today… A restless or troubled heart might want to know.
Because of the gospel we have both grace for today and bright hope for tomorrow.
God’s future grace both redeems your past and is tethered to the present reality of your adoption into God’s family.
“So you are no longer a slave, but a son, and if a son, then an heir through God” (Gal. 4:7).
O troubled heart, are you still troubled? Still prefer your petty trivialities to God’s epic drama of redemption?
“Beloved, we are God’s children now, and what we will be has not yet appeared; but we know that when he appears we shall be like him, because we shall see him as he is” (1 John 3:2).
God’s indomitable, unflinching resolve to love you will keep your heart anchored today in the grace of Christ, and he will bring you home.
Now this is something weighty to look forward to—and that’s the Understatement of the Year.
ABOUT THE WRITER
Gloria (@gloriafurman) is mostly from Texas. In 2008 she moved to the Middle East with her husband Dave to plant Redeemer Church of Dubai. They have three fun kiddos and Gloria enjoys serving the ladies in her community as a doula. Gloria is the author of Glimpses of Grace: Treasuring the Gospel in Your Home (Crossway 2013).