Don’t Despise the Day of Small Things

December 20, 2012 · 14 comments

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by Gloria Furman

Today was a day of small things.

Except for that diaper incident. That was fairly epic.

And that struggle with a daughter who needed to complete a worksheet for kindergarten. My sinful response needlessly turned it into a much bigger deal.

Then in the midst of all this I had that dark, poisonous thought that I would be happier doing or being something else.

It’s an ancient thought that “runs in the family,” so-to-speak. This thought was hissed into the ears of our first parents. The crafty serpent planted a seed of skepticism in the woman’s mind: “Did God actually say, ‘You shall not eat of any tree in the garden?’” (Gen. 3:1). Despising God’s word and will, Adam and Eve considered the snake’s words and esteemed their own will instead.

We do the same thing today. We wonder if perhaps God was wrong and that our own designs for our lives are better. Sometimes that dark thought persists through long seasons but sometimes it springs up unexpectedly like a weed. I’ve heard friends confess both in hushed whispers and through bitter tears how they’ve also entertained the thought that they were made for something “better.”

Today, during the day of small things, I was reminded of how only the gospel can ground me steadfast and contented in Christ alone when I hear that dreadful hissing. Now, at the end of a tough day, I’m even more convinced that cliché encouragements are like cheap diapers. Only the gospel can persevere your faith through a potential spiritual blow out.

If the fruits of peace and joy in Christ only grow on trees that have their roots sunk deeply in the gladness of God in his sovereignty over all things, then I desperately need to cling to God’s word.

Parenting mishaps happen every day, but the circumstances don’t need to dictate how I respond to them. We’re all sinners in need of the Savior. I’m raising pint-sized self-sovereigns who attempt to govern themselves in such a way that brings them maximum self-prescribed happiness. They are that way because they’re related to me—a fellow sinner who needs God’s grace.

Instead of allowing the drip of impatience induce me to scorn my role as a mother or sin against my kids, I should rejoice that the Lord has laid my iniquity on Jesus (Isa. 53:6) and run as fast as I can to the overflowing well of compassion that our Chief Shepherd has for sheep who go astray. (And I should tell my children that that’s where I’m going and why.)

I’ve found one tremendous thought that is able to crush my nagging thoughts of malcontent:

Jesus is infinitely more precious than whatever it is that I feel like I’m missing out on.

Jesus is my soul’s anchor and hope. One of the most soul-stirring ideas is that Jesus endured the cross “for the joy set before him” (Heb. 12:2). Part of the joy he is looking forward to is this Celebration of all celebrations:

“Then I heard what seemed to be the voice of a great multitude, like the roar of many waters and like the sound of mighty peals of thunder, crying out,

‘Hallelujah! For the Lord our God the Almighty reigns. Let us rejoice and exult and give him the glory, for the marriage of the Lamb has come, and his Bride has made herself ready; it was granted her to clothe herself with fine linen, bright and pure’—for the fine linen is the righteous deeds of the saints.

And the angel said to me, ‘Write this: Blessed are those who are invited to the marriage supper of the Lamb.’ And he said to me, ‘These are the true words of God’” (Rev. 19:6-9).

Isn’t that Astounding! It’s really real and those who trust in Christ have been invited to this marriage supper. This is as true as “the true words of God.” It doesn’t get much true-er than that!

Today marked an especially tense day of my struggle with contentment. Another day in the future could present similar difficult circumstances.

But the day of small things is no small thing when it reminds me that every single day of small things will eventually culminate in the worship of the Risen Christ for all eternity. Forever we’re going to be worshiping the Lamb who was slain for us and ransomed people for God from every tribe and language and people and nation, making us a kingdom and priests unto God (Rev. 5:9-10).

Today I want to be obsessed with what I’m going to be obsessed with 30 trillion years from now.

So today, by God’s grace and through his strength, I can cheerfully serve where God has placed me, doing what he would have me do in the race he has set before me—one diaper change and kindergarten worksheet at a time.


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 really misses pumpkin lattes (especially this time of year) and she is the author of Glimpses of Grace: Treasuring the Gospel in Your Home (Crossway 2013).

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{ 9 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Catherine Parks December 21, 2012 at 12:13 am

This is beautiful, Gloria. I praise God for this truth, and that He’s using you as a vessel to teach it to me. Thank you.

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2 Gloria December 21, 2012 at 8:32 am

Thank you, Catherine. It’s just like our Redeemer to use a tough day for his own glory!

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3 Luma December 21, 2012 at 5:05 pm

Gloria….you minister the grace of Jesus to women’s souls, along with the ministry to your own family… I think you know how deeply I feel about this… bless you for these words.

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4 Alicia December 22, 2012 at 3:23 am

Thank you so much Gloria for this humble reminder of the Gospel! You have strengthened and encouraged my heart in a such a huge way. This is exactly the message I needed to hear today.

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5 Betsy December 22, 2012 at 10:53 am

This is a beautiful reminder to find contentment with Christ and embrace the life he has for us today. Every stage in life brings that old attack that we’d be happier doing something else. I’m not changing diapers anymore, but just the other day I stopped what I was doing to help my teenagers dye their hair RED! (Not high on my list of priorities for the day, but high on theirs…) :-)

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6 Sarah Mae January 1, 2013 at 5:14 am

This is true and beautiful and profound.

Thank you for your words.

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7 Gloria January 1, 2013 at 9:41 pm

Thank you, Sarah! May God give us the faith we need to rest in his truth!

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8 Kitty Johnson October 30, 2013 at 8:26 am

Dear woman of God, How I wish I had known you or @ least been able to read this when my 3 girls were small. Your wisdom is profound & every word you wrote is pure truth. I so regret getting angry & allowing my temper to rule – the hissing was so loud. Even though I did learn to tell them I was wrong & ask for their forgiveness, I did not run to my Lord & confess, asking for His grace & mercy. I since have done so & received the forgiveness He so graciously bestows, but I still see the little faces, tear-stained & afraid. May God richly bless you & your ministry!! There is nothing more important than raising our children to serve God & teaching them by our example. Carry on warrior!! In Christ’s love, Kitty

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9 Gloria October 30, 2013 at 9:34 am

Kitty, thank you for this reminder of how God’s grace is sufficient for us in all things. What a privilege we have to walk with God and hold our little ones’ hands as we walk.

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