It is easy to think how good it will be when the kids aren't in nappies, when Erin can help out around the house a bit more, when we are moved into our new house with the renovations done and the garden landscaped. It is easy to think how I will be able to do a mighty work for God when the kids are all left home. How easy it is to wish these moments away. I have known people who fervently prayed daily that they may die a martyr, yet failed to be kind to their children. Others who yearned to be over seas missionaries but failed to show love and understanding to their neighbor. Women who spent days and days traveling to encourage other women, yet never encouraged their husbands. Men who pounded the streets preaching yet failed to show compassion and understanding to the fellow in the next pew at church.
We need to live in the now and gain interest on that which we have been entrusted with (Luke 19:11-26). We need to tend the sheep like Moses and David before we are called to the great works in store for us. Time is short, and that is all the more reason to be careful and diligent in our work, not surge forward and wrest more 'exciting' endeavors from the hands of the Holy Spirit.
If we are called to live the quiet life (1 Thessalonians 4:11) we must do that to His glory. If we are called to live a comfortable life in middle class Australia (or wherever) we need to do that TO HIS GLORY! Not pine after distant mission fields that are not ours to tend. If we are at the stage of changing 20 nappies a day and cleaning butter out of the carpet, we need to do that to His glory too.
I challenge you to do a study of the words "content" and "rejoice" in the Bible and see what you find.
Not all circumstances are easy, even in retrospect. I remember my whole wedding day I repeatedly said to myself through gritted teeth "I will laugh about this in ten years". Almost eight years later, I'm still not laughing! But I can rejoice. I can rejoice at the healing that has taken place since, the relationships mended, the beautiful family that had its official beginnings on that day, to name but a few blessings I've been given. Because of His goodness I can rejoice and my children will not hear anger, disgust or hurt in my voice when I speak of that day.
I pray that, like the apostle Paul, I will learn to be content in all things (Philippians 4:11) and if I am called to tend sheep for forty years in the wilderness, as Moses was, I will!
I must now go and do that work which I have been given!!