I’ve been listening to a biography of the great evangelist, George Whitefield. He did great things for God. On a ship to colonial America he converted foul-mouthed sailors, formed a choir and did numerous bible studies. He spoke to crowds of 80,000 in England. Nowadays we have celebrity pastors. We have worship leaders who do concerts for thousands.
It’s so easy to compare ourselves with others. We can be tempted to envy others’ gifts. Paul had to adjust the Corinthians about comparing themselves to one another: “The eye cannot say to the hand, ‘I have no need of you,’ nor again the head to the feet, ‘I have no need of you.’” (1 CO 12.21).
We can feel like if we don’t do something great for God, why bother. Well, here’s what God says: “Do small things for me.”
Jesus compared sharing the gospel to sowing seeds. A seed seems insignificant. A seed seems to have little value. When we mention Jesus to someone or ask someone if we can pray for them, it feels insignificant. When we read the Bible for 5 minutes to our distracted children, we wonder, did anything get through? When we pray for someone to be saved or healed, we can wonder if anything happened.
Most of our Christian life involves sowing tiny seeds. Most of us can’t give a $10,000 gift to our church. But we can give a seed.
And he sat down opposite the treasury and watched the people putting money into the offering box. Many rich people put in large sums. And a poor widow came and put in two small copper coins, which make a penny.f And he called his disciples to him and said to them, “Truly, I say to you, this poor widow has put in more than all those who are contributing to the offering box. For they all contributed out of their abundance, but she out of her poverty has put in everything she had, all she had to live on.” MK 12.41-44
The widow might have thought, “Why should I give these two coins? They’re only worth a penny. What good will that do?” But Jesus said she gave more than anyone else, because of her sacrifice. All she had was a seed. But in God’s eyes, it was huge. In Mt 10.42, Jesus said:
“And whoever gives one of these little ones even a cup of cold water because he is a disciple, truly, I say to you, he will by no means lose his reward.”
What’s a cup of water? Nothing. How hard is it to give a cup of water to someone? It’s not hard at all, so it’s probably worthless. How much does it cost you? Nothing. So it’s probably worthless, right? Wrong! Jesus sees every single cup of water given in his name and will reward that seed.
We are tempted to think if I don’t do something great why do anything at all. But nothing we do for God is small in his sight.
“Nothing is small to God when it’s done in service to him.” – Caleb Breakey
God doesn’t forget a single penny or a single cup of water:
For God is not unjust so as to overlook your work and the love that you have shown for his name in serving the saints, as you still do. HEB 6.10
I can’t wait to see how God surprises many on judgment day:
Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, I was naked and you clothed me, I was sick and you visited me, I was in prison and you came to me.’ Then the righteous will answer him, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you drink? And when did we see you a stranger and welcome you, or naked and clothe you? And when did we see you sick or in prison and visit you?’ And the King will answer them, ‘Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers,f you did it to me.’ MT 25.34-40
So today, do something small for God. Send someone and encouraging text. Pray for someone. Give some small gift to the poor. Even if it’s only a dollar. Buy someone a sandwich. Praise God for something, even if it only takes a second. Sow lots of small, seemingly insignificant seeds for God today. You’ll probably forget all about them, but Jesus won’t miss a single one, and he’ll commend you on judgment day.