Recently our toaster bit the dust, it may seem like a small and insignificant event. Yet for some one who enjoys toast and waffles, it is actually a really big deal. Now you can say to me, well go and get another one, however at the time we did not have the ability to go out and buy a new toaster. Yes, I was having waffle withdrawals … I mean bad waffle withdrawals.
We did purchase a new toaster, and I almost had to laugh at how silly this seemed, however, it made me think about how often we do not pay attention to the smaller things in life. I know we are all busy with work, home life, being parents (or children). Taking our kids to sporting events at school, watching them in talent shows and plays. It seems that with out busy schedules we can simply place the small things in life, that while they seem insignificant, that actually can be just as important as the larger things in life.
to illustrate this point, Saint Francis De Sales2 stated, “while I am busy little things, I am not required to do great things.” 1 So, what are these smaller things? Maybe they can be taking time to listen to music or spend time with your favorite activities such as hobbies, or crafts. Taking a walk or hiking, reading a book (I still use paper books personally). These may seem trivial; however, they can make the difference in your day, or they may be things that allow you to reconnect with yourself. We can look at small things in a larger sense, having a family game or movie night. Sitting at the table for supper and putting phones and tablets away in favor of conversations with each other. Though these small things may seem unimportant, in truth, they are valuable to us. Epictetus3 states “Practice yourself for heavens sake in the little things and then proceed to greater.”1
what does this all mean? I believe that like my toaster, seeming unimportant, that we must recognize that the small things in life are of great importance to ourselves, and, in turn to others. Saint Paul states in Colossians 3:14 “And above all these put-on love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony.” (NIV)
How can we give love, if we do not first take care of ourselves, to appreciate the small things in life that provide us a way to nurture and grow in our faiths, our relationship with ourselves and God? So maybe in the larger picture my toaster was not that small of a deal as one may think?
I will leave you with one more thought about the small things in life, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle4 observed, “it has long been an axiom of mine, that the little things are infinitely the most important” 4
May the peace of our Lord always be with you
2. Saint Francis De Sales – Roman Catholic bishop 1567 - 1622
3. Epictetus – Greek philosopher 50 A.D. – 135 A.D.
4. Sir Artur Conan Doyle – British author 1859 – 1930
To preface this, I am not nor, have I ever been political, I have not attempted to take sides in any secular debate. Nor have I felt that the pulpit is anyplace for the faithful to preach political affiliations, political rhetoric or secular bantering.
With this being said, I am speaking to you not as a pastor, but as a person who is concerned with events that have been occurring in our country. I am speaking of the issues with the separations of families as a moral issue, and a humanitarian issue, one that we as members of humanity should be outraged about.
What we are seeing can only be described as unbelievable, in this country at this time in history, makes my heart hurt. How can we allow this to happen? Better yet, why is it that are being silent about this? I am not talking about the groups that are voicing opposition to what is happening, their efforts show that there are still people among us who find actions like these morally reprehensible, and unacceptable. I am speaking to those who have the responsibility to lead others in the name of God. In Leviticus, God tells us, “When a foreigner resides among you in your land, do not mistreat them. The foreigner residing among you must be treated as your native-born. Love them as yourself, for you were foreigners in Egypt.”
So, are we to not follow His word? Or are we to replace it with our own rhetoric? To this we should remember what Christ told us in Matthew 25:25 – 36 “For I was hungry, and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty, and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick, and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.” When Jesus was asked, when have we do these things for you he replied, "The King will reply, 'Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.' (Matthew 25:40)
I believe that each Christian or follower of Christ has an obligation towards all peoples, in all places, to show the compassion and love Christ gives to us. We must show Christ working though us, that we may show love and compassion to all who we meet. Saint Paul tells us in Galatians 5:14 “For the entire law is fulfilled in keeping this one command: "Love your neighbor as yourself." Let us treat others in the same way we wish to be treated
May the peace of the risen Christ be with you always.
Pastor Lisa Chachula