Yesterday’s church service was interesting, to say the least. Because of the holidays, children’s church was cancelled, so our five year old was attending the adult worship with us. He was thrilled. He had been begging to go to our “class” for quite some time. Funny how it wasn’t anything like he expected. He thought for sure it would be better than his class, which was usually “boring” and “babyish.” He was a bit put out when the service started with singing. Really?!? That’s how his class starts! He sat in the chair with arms folded and a huge scowl on his face. This wasn’t looking very promising on the scope of his “fun” radar.
Finally, the Pastor got up to preach. Whoa! Now this was not what he expected. This guy just talked and talked and talked. How boring could it get? All of a sudden, as he sat there stewing in his disappointment and frustration, trying to comprehend how his existence just became so very pitiful, he realized that he was hungry – not only hungry, but thirsty too. He also had to use the bathroom in the worst way. The more he thought about it, the more he was sure that he would surely starve to death. He wasn’t sure if that would happen before or after his dehydrated body would explode from the absence of a bathroom in the sanctuary.
Needless to say, it was a very long hour and a half. I think that attending our service, may have showed my son that his class was actually right where he belonged.
As my husband and I rehashed the events of the morning, it occurred to me how often I am just like my discontented son. I whine and complain because I’m not in the “right place.” I’m sure that I’m ready for something bigger and better than the “boring” circumstances currently I found myself in. I can see what I really want, but I can’t have it.
Other times, I just dwell on those little inconveniences of life, until they become huge problems. They consume all of my time and all of my energy.
Many times, if I finally do get what I’ve been wanting for so long, I realize that it’s not really what I wanted, or at least it is not what I expected. This has happened many times in my life. (See https://perfectjoyministries.wordpress.com/2013/11/29/future-grace/)
I’m beginning to learn that God truly does know what is best for me. His timing is truly perfect. Just like we knew that our son wasn’t quite ready for “big church,” God knows when I’m not ready for “big life.” Even the “boring” and “babyish” things in life are preparing me for those bigger steps. If I skip those things and if I don’t learn what I am meant to learn, because I am too busy dwelling on the minors, those bigger things in life may just overwhelm me.
God not only wants us to be content in our present circumstances, He also wants us to be thankful, joyful, and continually seeking to grow in our walk with Him. He created me with a purpose, and He has me exactly where He wants me and where He needs me right now. Whether I have something more to learn, or whether I am supposed to minister to someone, I am where I should be. I once heard, “If the grass is greener on the other side of the fence, just remember that the water bill is higher.”
As we enter this new year, may we stop dwelling on how we have been “misplaced” in God’s master plan, and instead, allow Him to do the work He has begun in our life and in the lives of those around us, trusting that what He allows is for our good and for His glory, every time.
For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong. 2 Corinthians 12:10
Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. Philippians 4:6
And I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ. Philippians 1:6
Original material by Holly M. Besser, ©2013. May not be used or re-printed without permission. bp49p12-30-13