“If you are faithful in little things, you will be faithful in large ones. But if you are dishonest in little things, you won’t be honest with greater responsibilities.” – Like 16:10.
If you don’t think that small things can and do make a difference, consider that one of the most powerful forces is the splitting of the smallest thing. In the splitting of the atom, a succession of explosions can be set off to cause the biggest explosion the world has ever known.
You see this a lot: people who have great intentions of changing their life are super-enthusiastic for a while, and then that enthusiasm wanes. Take New Year’s resolutions for example: Most people think big and want to make significant changes in their lives. That may be part of the reason so many people do not keep their New Year’s resolutions. If you want long-term change in your life, you have to start slowly, knowing the initial spurt of energy won’t last. Instead, aim at changing in smaller increments. Once you take a few smaller steps it will be easier to carry on when the initial enthusiasm is gone. This habit will stabilize your walk, and provide the inspiration to stay with it.
Think of it this way. It is assumed that being a Christian will translate automatically into becoming a Christian. It is also logical to think that a five-year-old Christian will have five years’ worth of spiritual maturity, a ten-year-old Christian will have ten years’ worth of spiritual maturity, and so on. The assumption is that faith cannot help but grow with time, and it is time alone that is required. But the key is to start small and try to make them habits and turn those habits into growth.
Starting small does not mean it will stay small. Jesus never pastored a large church. He told simple stories about a flower, a bird, a lost coin, and a boy who ran way from home. His Father and our Father takes note of a bird that falls. Hence, if we would be Christlike, we too must be willing to do the small things.
So here’s my suggestion to you. Take that area of growth in your life and break it down into very small pieces. If you don’t listen well to your wife, don’t just pray, God, help me to be a better listener. Instead pray, God, when I ask my wife how her day went this afternoon, help me to listen through her entire response without thinking about what I want to say when she finishes. It is those moments that sanctification takes place. So think small. Very small. And watch as God transforms you into the image of Christ one degree at a time.
So, if you are going to start with the small things, I encourage you to be consistent in order to reap the full benefits out of these small things.
- Why is it so easy to neglect the small things in life? Can you make up for lost time in these areas?
- Pray about and identify the one area that you can begin doing consistently by making daily deposits of time.