I had an epiphany this week. Normally, If I am going to worry (although my Mom tells me worrying is a sin:) I worry over the big things, not the little things. But I had a conversation with my friend that made me realize that it’s actually the little things that matter. Not that I need to worry over them. It’s just that the little things are important.
My friend’s husband is very sick. We are praying for a miracle, but so far He is still gravely ill. The ordinary, every day things that we do may seem boring because they are so routine, yet here is what she told me about the little routine things– “Joanne, my husband and I make up our bed together every morning. I am not sure that I will ever be able to do that without him.” It’s not that she is not able to make up the bed on her own. It’s just that doing that ordinary, every day chore was a simple thing that they enjoy doing together. This small thing brought her joy. Friends, it is the little things that make a difference in our lives.
So I have been thinking about this for awhile. And this morning when my husband left for work and threw his towels after his shower in a heap and water was all over the floor, I thought about my friend’s words. As I mopped up the floor and straightened the towels, I was reminded that I don’t have to clean up the floor and straighten the towels: I get too. This is a small thing that I can do for him since he gets up at 4:30 a.m. every morning to get ready for work and is in a rush. You have heard it said:
Don’t sweat the small stuff.
I would like to change this to:
Enjoy simple acts of love you can do for others. It’s the small things that matter.
As I age, things don’t upset me as much. as they used to. But I also believe that it’s the power of Christ’s love transforming my heart that is making a difference. I have a long way to go, but it sure makes life easier when self gets off the throne.
This fall I will be teaching on the Kingdom of God and comparing the Kingdom of God with the kingdom (note- little k) of self. Every one of us is in a battle over which kingdom will prevail. Surrendering to Jesus, brings forth His kingdom. Giving in to self and life’s irritations, brings forth a life of internal stress. I am beginning to understand, that in the Kingdom of God, it is the little things that matter such as kindnesses offered to others, keeping your commitments, obeying God’s commandments and helping those in need.
We all tend to look at the big things that we need to do– to accomplish, but it is the little things that count. They add up to a life well lived; a life where making up the bed with the person you love is a big thing and picking up wet towels is too. I wonder if this is where we are getting it wrong in our world today? Jesus’s words ring true:
One of the teachers of the law came and heard them debating. Noticing that Jesus had given them a good answer, he asked him, “Of all the commandments which is the most important?” The most important one, “answered Jesus is this: ” Hear O Israel; the Lord our God is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul and mind. The second is this: ‘ Love your neighbor as yourself.” (Mark 12)