It can be so easy to think that our day to day routine is unimportant.
Throughout the Bible we see that it is vitally important to be faithful in the small things, the things which very often seem to be unimportant. Jesus teaches this in the parable of the talents when the master in the parable says to one of his servants, “You’ve been trustworthy with small things, and now I’m going to put you in charge of bigger ones” (Matthew 25:23, New Testament for Everyone). It can be so easy to think that our day to day routine is unimportant, as we look towards the bigger things that God has for us. But it is as we are faithful in where we are right now, that God will move us onto bigger and better things.
God was actually trying to protect the Israelites.
In the book of Deuteronomy, Moses gave the Israelites this instruction: “Someone else may say to you, “Let’s worship other gods.” That person may be your best friend, your brother or sister, your son or daughter, or your own dear wife or husband. But you must not listen to people who say such things. Instead, you must stone them to death. You must be the first to throw the stones, then others from the community will finish the job. Don’t show any pity” (Deuteronomy 13:6-10, Contemporary English Version). On the surface, this may seem to be very harsh, but God was actually trying to protect the Israelites from falling into the worship of false gods and all the sin that goes with it. God knew what the consequences would be if the Israelites went down that route, so He gave them instructions designed to nip every situation of idol worship in the bud, while it was still something small. To not show any pity, in order to protect the wider community. However from the Old Testament history of Israel, it is clear that this commandment was need consistently carried out – Israel were not faithful in the small things. Maybe they thought that it didn’t really matter, maybe they thought they were being kind by sparing people’s lives, or maybe they just didn’t care about God commandments. Whatever the reasons were, the Israelites ignored the small things and there were big consequences. The people of Israel fell into the worship of false gods and were eventually exiled from their land – which was not God’s plan for them, but a consequence of their disobedience.
He did not despise the small things.
David, on the other hand, was faithful in the small things. David was between ten & twelve years old when Samuel anointed him as the next king over Israel. God gave David a great promise for his future, but that promise did not immediately come to pass. In fact it took a considerable amount of time, because David did not become king until he was thirty. In the meantime though, David remained faithful in whatever situation he found himself in. David knew that God had much grander things planned for him, but he did not despise the small things, and instead carried out every small task faithfully. Likewise Joseph was faithful in the small things, and because he was, God eventually moved him into the position that Joseph had dreamed of many years previously.
We only see the highlights.
Even Jesus seems to have lived a fairly ordinary, albeit sinless, life up until the time when He began His ministry. Jesus remained faithful in the mundane, everyday things, knowing that God had so much more for His life. We usually only see the highlights of people’s lives recorded in the Bible, for example we know only snippets about Jesus’ early life, we usually don’t see the time spent doing ordinary things. You could say that for most people in the Bible we only see the tip of the iceberg. The account of Moses skips the time that he spent growing up in Egypt. Then it skips the time he spent in the desert working as a shepherd for his father-in-law and within a few chapters Moses goes from being a baby to being eighty. We only see the highlights, we do not see the times where Moses was doing ordinary things, all the time knowing that he was not destined to be a shepherd in the desert.
Keep being faithful in the small things.
You may know in your heart that you are not living the life you are destined for. You may not be in the house you want to be in. You may not be driving the car you would like to drive. Your finances may not be in the shape to really be as generous as you would like to be. It may seem like God has so much more for you than the job that you are currently doing. Or maybe it is something else. Whatever it is, keep being faithful in the small things, keep being faithful (and thankful) where you are right now and in due season, God will move you onto bigger and better things. Until then keep Zechariah 4:10 from the International Children’s Bible in mind, “The people should not think that small beginnings are unimportant”.
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