How many people put in a security system to keep small children from entering their house? How many people build their house to keep out little, annoying insects? (You may try, but those little buggers will come in anyway). How many people get overly concerned about their checking account being $0.01 off? How many people lose it when they realize that the color of paint they bought is 0.01 wavelength off? How many people are afraid that they are going to end up in a city that is so infested with moles that they won’t be able to live any longer?
I will admit, arguably there may be someone who has one of the above fears. However, for most of us, we do not fear the little things. We do not spend thousands of dollars to protect ourselves from the little disasters or pests in life. I don’t know of any insurances that are called on to cover a glass of spilled juice. Most policies has a large deductible and therefore are used only for large disasters.
Reality check! Do we take the same “it’s just a little thing” attitude with our spiritual life?
Lot was being escorted out of the city of Sodom by angels and told to flee. He, in his usual casual manner, did not desire to fully commit. He wanted to compromise. He looked at the angels and said, “Why try to go that far? Why not just go part way and then stop? Look at Zoar. It is just a little city. I know you have rescued me from the utter destruction that is about to pour upon Sodom and Gomorrah but you can’t protect me in the mountain” (Genesis 19). That is what got Lot into the situation he was in to begin with. He slowly compromised his standards and beliefs until he was a man of standing in the sinful city. After this compromise of going to Zoar, he ended up having his daughters take advantage of him. They had learned the way of compromise too well.
24There be four things which are little upon the earth, but they are exceeding wise: 25The ants are a people not strong, yet they prepare their meat in the summer; 26The conies are but a feeble folk, yet make they their houses in the rocks; 27The locusts have no king, yet go they forth all of them by bands; 28The spider taketh hold with her hands, and is in kings' palaces. (Proverbs 30:24-28)
Ants are small. Yet they are wise in the sense they know how to prepare for the future. Too many people spend all they have not thinking about upcoming bills. If they have it, they spend it. They do not have the wisdom of an ant. They think it is a small thing to not prepare for the inevitable. This includes the inevitable to meeting God. They think they have plenty of time. Recently, I was at the funeral home for a young man in his early twenties who was in good health. No one expected him to die. I have been to the funeral home for children. I have been to the funeral home for those who had been healthy. Unless they were prepared to meet God by having been washed clean by the blood of the Lord Jesus Christ, they lack of preparing for the future would cost them an eternity in hell.
Conies are not strong but they are wise enough to surround themselves in strong rocks. Do we have the wisdom to surround ourselves with mentors, prayer warriors, accountability partners, and the more spiritually mature? We need the strength of others. But more importantly, do we surround ourselves with the Word of God? Do we run to Jesus for protection? Do we seek His face and His will? Or do we think, “this is a little trial, I can do it by myself”?
Why do we think missing church is a “little” thing? We think we don’t need the hypocrisy. I can agree that we don’t need the hypocrisy. We don’t need the judgment that many of us have felt from “fellow” believers. We don’t need the condemnation. However, just like the locusts; there is strength in numbers. God does not expect us to do it alone. He has placed us in a community for strength and encouragement. God knows that healing takes place best in a loving family. The locust may not eat much alone, but a swarm of locusts can decimate a large field in a very short time.
The last one mentioned in Proverbs bothers me. I hate spiders. I can’t find anything good about those little pests. They are little—especially compared to me—but they are everywhere. If I should ever get a change to go to London and view Buckingham Palace, I feel pretty sure I will not be invited to come in and sit in the same room with the Queen. However, I can tell you, there are spiders in the palace. There are spiders who dwell in the Queen’s bedroom. They are everywhere.
Satan works in the little things. I don’t think that he has ever come to a dedicated Christian and said, “Wow, look at your secretary. Go have an affair with her.” However, I do know that he has gone to many dedicated Christians and said, “There is nothing wrong with taking your secretary to lunch to show her you appreciate her.” It is just a little step. But from that little step we set in motion the slippery slide to adultery.
I remember a little subtracting error that cost me money. I was heading on vacation in 1976. I mailed all my payments and saw I had a grand total of $0.20 left in the account. I felt safe. I had the money I needed for a nice vacation. I had my charge cards. I had just enough left in my bank account to cover the checks I mailed. When I returned home from vacation, I found notices of insufficient funds. My car payment had bounced—not once, but twice. They had rerun the check during the week I was gone. I had overdraft fees. Why? I had money in the account. I went back and checked my adding and subtraction. Oops!! I had made a mistake. I was actually a dime short. A little 10 cent error. That is a little error. It was not much. But it cost me dearly.
While we spend time, energy, and money protecting against the big things in life; too often we overlook the little things. Little things add up. We build hedges and walls to keep the big, dangerous things out of our lives; but we forget it is the little things that can destroy us.
Take us the foxes, the little foxes, that spoil the vines: for our vines have tender grapes. (Song of Songs 2:15)
I know I for one have fallen into the trap of thinking it is just a little thing. It is time we all sit up and take notice. Little things become big things. How many houses have fallen as the result of little termites? How many stored memories have been destroyed by silver fish? How many pieces of stored furniture have been eaten by small rats? We need to learn to protect ourselves from the little things. If we continue to allow little things to grow, they become big things. Big things draw us away from our goal. Big things hamper our growth. Big things replace faith. Big things start little.
We need to keep our eyes on Jesus.
Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God. (Hebrews 12:2)
Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee. (Isaiah 26:3)
I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 3:14)
Anything that takes our eyes of Christ—even for a brief moment—is not a little thing. It is a deadly thing. Anything that disturbs our peace is not a little thing. It is a deadly thing. Anything that keeps us from pressing towards being like Christ is not a little thing. It is a deadly thing.
Keep your eye on the Prize. Keep moving forward. Don’t allow little things to occupy your time and take you away from what really counts.