When my dad was nearing the end of his life he began searching his heart to see if there was anything left undone - some unconfessed sin, a misdeed, anything at all he needed to make right before he faced God. He constantly prayed that the Holy Spirit would bring to his remembrance anything he needed to make right with his fellowman. It was during this time that he came across a rusty old garden tiller at the edge of his garden. It belonged to a farmer down the road who had sold it to Dad, but, when it didn't work, the farmer returned his money to him and told Dad just to bring it back any time.
"I thought I took this back years ago," he told my mother as he pulled the tiller out of the mass of weeds.
"Well, I know you meant to do so," Mom replied. "It never did work. Just haul it to the dump and forget it."
"It doesn't belong to me," Dad responded and started cleaning the tiller up, breaking it free from the years of corrosion and debris. Finally, he loaded it on to his pickup truck and drove to the farmer's house. The man was surprised to say the least when Dad showed up with the forgotten tiller after so many years. When Dad apologized and offered to pay him for it, the man responded with tears in his eyes, "Why, that thing never was any good! I am the one who tried to cheat you. You are an honest man."
When talking with him about the incident a few days later I remarked. "Dad, that was such a small thing! Surely you don't think God required you to take that old tiller back to him?"
"I don't rightly know," Dad acknowledged. "But when you pray and things like this happen, it's best not to take chances on missing out on receiving or being a blessing." Then his beautiful blue eyes misted with unshed tears, "And besides, I want to hear Jesus say, 'Well done'."
Small things. As I have learned to walk with God through the years, He has taught me how one small act of obedience can lead to major blessings. The Bible tells us: "Unless you are faithful in small matters, you won't be faithful in large ones." (Luke 16:10 NLT).
It is the little things that can add spice to or spoil your life. Solomon said, "the little foxes spoil the vine."
- - That "little white lie" does hurt.
- - "What they don't know" may not hurt them -- but could very well hurt YOU.
- - The clerk gave you to much change? It does not belong to you. Return it.
- - Two cokes came out of the machine when you paid for only one? Return the other to the vendor.
- - Did "something" tell you to perform an act of kindness to a stranger? Do it without question.
- - Learn to be faithful in the little things that (seemingly) do not matter.
Just little things. Just insignificant matters. But, it is when we are faithful in the small matters that God entrusts us with more. Be assured God will not use you to change the world until you have been faithful in the small things in your own house, on your own street, in your own town. Listen to the Holy Spirit within you. Be obedient to his gentle nudgings. God wants to know that he can count on you to obey him in seemingly insignificant matters simply because he brings it to your attention. It may seem like a "small thing" to you, but truth is, nothing is "small stuff" to him.
"Be faithful in small things because it is in them that your strength lies." Mother Teresa
Linda Van Fleet is a freelance inspirational writer specializing in articles and features on Christian lifestyle topics, angels, Internet and social issues. Linda has 2 children and three grandchildren. Visit www.ibelieveinangels.com" target="_blank" title="I Believe in Angels, Do you?">http://ibelieveinangels.com for great stories of faith, inspiration and angels.
© 2005 Linda Van Fleet All rights reserved.