Fear, Small Things, and a Big God

One of the ways God reassures me is to say “do not despise the day of small things.”*  He uses the ordinary, and the overlooked, and the seemingly inconsequential.  And even the things He does with these can go overlooked.  Unnoticed.

I used to think that if it was “of God” it had to be big and bold and dramatic and flashy.  Like a super hero.  But then I learned that if he can use flour and oil, and widows, and dropouts, there’s hope for me.  I’m thankful for that, because my life is mostly a life of “small things”.

But lately I’ve been convicted that I’ve gone too far.  I’m settling for too little. I’m settling for a small god, instead of the real thing.   It’s not me who’s flashy and dramatic, but I can trust in God to do amazing things through me, beyond my ability.

Sometimes He wants to do big things.

And I realize at the root of settling for a “small things God” is fear.  Fear that if I put myself out there and trust Him for something big, I’ll fail.  I won’t do it “right” and He won’t come through.

It’s like the invitation I sent out today to over 20 people for a party.  Before I hit “send” I thought, what if no one comes?  What if everyone says “no”?  Or what if two people come and it’s awkward?  A public social fail.

When I’m honest with myself, I can admit this small thing God is more about me than it is about God.  About me appearing to fail, not Him.

When I agreed to run the half-marathon to raise money for clean water for Africa I told the organizer that because my husband is the senior pastor of a church I was uncomfortable asking for support from people in our community.  I didn’t want folks to feel like they “had” to give.  I didn’t want folks to feel guilt or pressure from me.  Instead I’d focus most on encouraging others to run and raise money.

I felt pretty good when I hit $1300.  However…

1.  Clean water is a big problem and we have a big God who created the cattle on a thousand hills.  This isn’t a burden for us, but an opportunity.  An opportunity to be part of God’s work in the world to make sure His resources reach everyone.

2.  It isn’t about me running a race that’s hard.  It’s about kids running a daily race that’s hard and they don’t have a choice whether to run or not.  They have to walk miles every day to haul dirty water that makes them sick.

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$50 provides clean water for one person.  Right now I’ve raised enough money for clean water for about 28 people.  That’s a small thing, but it’s not nothing.  It’s ok.

But I think God is prompting me to trust Him for a bigger thing.

What if we raised enough money for 100 people to get clean water?  That would mean 72 of you would donate $50.  Or 144 of you would donate $25.  Just click here  and look for the orange “donate” button.

In what area of your life are you settling for small things, where God might prompt you to trust Him for bigger things?

*Zachariah 4:10

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5 thoughts on “Fear, Small Things, and a Big God

  1. Way to go, I totally agree 🙂

    • There are nearly 1 billion people in the world that don’t have clean, safe water.
    • The women and children that collect water spend approximately 40 billion hours getting it.
    • This detracts from their ability to do other work, or get an education.
    • It takes $20 to supply one of these people with a clean water supply.
    • Each dollar spent provides an economic return of $12.
    • Not least because of the drop in medical care and infant mortality.
    • Can you spare a single dollar for this campaign to bring clean water to 50,000 people?
    • That’s less than a third of the price of a cup of coffee.
    • All money goes to providing water not to admin costs or profit.

    See http://my.charitywater.org/run-old-dog

    If you can’t spare a single dollar, please pass this message on to others that might.

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  2. Thanks Laura. I feel like I went into the summer with the attitude of fear: “I just had baby #4….I just need to survive till school starts again in the fall.” I left no room to work, didn’t even invite God to use this summer and work through me even with my 4 kids. If my only expectation was to survive, I couldn’t fail. This is a great challenge to adjust my focus as we start fresh for the fall.

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    • Becca! I’m glad this post spoke to you, and it’s great to pay attention to what God may be stirring in your spirit, but I know you and I know His love shines brightly through you! I know He is working through you in the lives of your kids who see you dependent on His grace. Press on! Much love, Laura

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