The Small Things
Many of us have heard the phrase at some point in our lives that “nothing is too big for God”. That’s a good reminder. It looks good on a Facebook post or hanging in our house. It is a nice reminder when a friend is going through a hard time or trying situation. While I believe it is true, there are times I wonder: if nothing is too big for God, is God too busy for the small stuff?
I mean, God has a pretty big job. He is running the universe. Organizing the cosmos. Making sure the 7,200,000,000 people that populate the Earth are behaving. Man, He has a lot on His plate. Does He really care about all of the small things that are happening in my own personal life?
As I am thinking about this I am reminded about an old story in the Bible that is often skipped over because, honestly, it’s just a small little thing.
It takes place in 2 Kings 6 with the prophet Elisha. Elisha, a guy who God used to have someone raised from the dead, diseases healed, and many more miracles, finds himself in a pretty ordinary situation. He finds himself with a following of apprentices with not much money or time, yet they have a belief that God is doing something with Elisha and so they choose to stick around and follow him. In doing so, they are building some shelters to live in for the time being, when a pretty common thing happens.
"One of them was cutting down a tree. The iron blade of his ax fell into the water. 'Oh no, master!' he cried out. 'This ax was borrowed!'" - 2 Kings 6:5 NLT
One of the guys working drops his iron ax into the water. Seems ordinary. Seems like a simple mistake. Knowing more about that time in history shows us that iron was a precious commodity that took a very long time to make and form and therefore was very expensive. So expensive that this man was borrowing one because he probably couldn’t afford his own on his apprentice salary. All of a sudden this small thing is a big deal for this man.
Sometimes the small things in our life take up a lot of time and space in our minds. Being late for a meeting, a bad night with the kids, a comment someone made in passing, an argument with our spouse, the inability to find a parking spot downtown. All of these are small in the long run, but in the moment take up big spaces in our mind.
In this moment, the man assumes his ax is gone. He uses the past tense to describe “it was borrowed”. He invites Elisha, a prophet and representative of God, into the situation and something amazing happens.
"The man of God asked, 'Where did the blade fall?' He showed Elisha the place. Then Elisha cut a stick and threw it there. That made the iron blade float 'Take it out of the water,' he said. So the man reached out and took it." – 2 Kings 6:5-6 NLT
The thing I love about the greatness of God is that He isn’t just great because nothing is too big for Him. He is great because nothing is too small for Him. A small ax, that mattered to God. The struggle, the fear of not being able to replace that ax mattered. God showed up then and gives me a reminder today, “I care about what you care about”. That is why a relationship with God is so special. He, like any true friend, cares about all the parts of your life. Not just the big things, but the small things that take up a lot of space in our minds. I hope today you are reminded that whatever fills your head with worry, there is someone who is great enough to care about both the big and little things in your life.
"Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares about you." 1 Peter 5:7 NLT
Joe Leal | Student Ministries Director