When Little Things Become Large

by Deborah Maxey

Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms. 1 Peter 4:10 NIV

We live on a small lake. Sitting on our deck, high in the trees, we are surrounded by nature. One morning I noticed a baby duck (one of six) sitting on a stone at the water’s edge. Mom and siblings were secure in the grass on the shoreline.

I wondered what this baby duck wanted from life, perched so close to the water. Was it, “Mom, come on, let’s go swimming?” Or, “I’m thirsty.” As I watched, a small wake began to reach the area and splash water up on its rock. The baby duck seemed delighted, pushing its head in the water, letting the lake roll off it’s back and dipping down again and again, splashing and playing (or bathing?).

I looked to see what caused the wake, maybe a large otter, muskrat, or beaver, only to find a very small duck swimming alone at a distance. She was creating a small V directly behind her. As time and distance progressed, that V have become larger and larger, until it reached the edges of our shoreline where the little duck waited on the stone.

How many times do we wonder if the small things that we do matter? I’m sure we’ve all had times when people have told us, “I just wanted to tell you how much it meant when you….”

Our service to others glorifies God. Sometimes the smallest and easiest things leave a huge wake. I once had no time to cook or prepare food for a neighboring family who lost a loved one. It felt like a teeny tiny little offering when I took paper products instead. I knew their home would need everything from tissues, paper towels, napkins, and plates, to toilet paper. It was so well received I have since repeated it. Many times I’ve been told how vital my little wake contribution has been. 

Paul tells us that the Holy Spirit chooses spiritual gifts for each of us. Their purpose is not to make us feel good about ourselves. They have been given so we may build each other up. “But to each one is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good” (1 Corinthians 12:7 NASB, emphasis added). The by-product of that obedience is great blessing—for us and others. Nothing is so small that God can’t use.

Never hesitate to bless someone. Don’t wait for a grand occasion. We never know when we have made a major difference in someone’s life with a compliment, a card, a word of encouragement, or praise. 

It may feel small to you, but by the time that V reaches the shore you may leave them celebrating on their rock.  

This article was brought to you by the Advanced Writers and Speakers Association (AWSA).

About the author: A licensed therapist, Deborah McCormick Maxey repurposed her life when she closed her counseling practice in 2020 to joyfully invest her energy in writing Christian fiction,devotions, and her website https://deborahmaxey.com that focuses on miracles.  

The Endling: A Novel by [Deborah Maxey]

Deborah’s debut novel, The Endling, has just been awarded the Golden Scrolls Fiction Book of the Year! Native American Emerson Coffee is the last surviving member of her tribe. When US Marshals inform her she’s being hunted by a mob hit man, Emerson declines their offer of witness protection. But when three innocent children become caught in the crosshairs, Emerson must decide if she will risk it all—her mountains, her heritage . . . even her life—to secure their safety. 

Join the conversation. What is God calling you to do?

6 thoughts on “When Little Things Become Large

  1. As a writer and author I feel so small in the scheme of things, but I keep singing, “This little light of mine, I’m gonna let it shine.” Then I pray God will use it in some way for His glory. Deborah, I love your illustration. Thanks! Fran


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