When I let my emotions build up into an unstable tower that inevitably crashes down on me, I am crushed. When I wake up in the morning and my to do list looms large, I want to curl up in a ball under the covers and never come out. When I open my computer and discover that there has been another natural disaster or act of senseless violence, I feel myself shrinking in the face of such pain.
There is a lot out there that’s big: Huge storms, Massive acts of terror, Mega doubts and fears on a personal and global scale. The list of enormous things to worry about is itself truly gargantuan. And these monsters can make me feel so tiny and trivial, until I remember that the Lord is in charge, and He dwarfs them all.
The Lord is so pervasive and so profoundly present in all things that I can forget He’s there, which is crazy because He truly is the biggest thing there is. He is everything good and true and wonderful in this world and beyond. And you know what’s even crazier? He took the time to make us. He made me. This all-knowing, ever-present almighty Creator took the care and attention to make simple, seemingly insignificant me. Sure, it is no great feat for someone so powerful to make a human being, but the fact that He chooses to make each of us in His own image and keeps doing it, no matter how much we mess up the world, means that we matter. We truly matter. And that makes us big too.
The Word is filled with stories of small things overcoming larger counterparts. David defeats Goliath with a tiny, but powerful and well-placed stone. The mustard seed, the tiniest of seeds, can grow into a mighty tree when tended with devotion. The Lord came to Elijah in one of his darkest hours, not in the wind, the earthquake, or the fire, but in the still, small voice. And that voice speaks to every one of us when we manage to tear our eyes away from the spectacular displays of pain and suffering and blame in the world and listen, truly listen, to the message that the Lord is sending to each of us. We matter. We are fearfully and wonderfully and purposefully made. The Lord Himself came to the world as a tiny, helpless baby. He knows the powerful potential of innocent, small things and that’s why He has all of us start out the same way. We might be small, but with His guidance we can be great.
Here’s the tricky part. Because we are significant and because we do matter, we are worth targeting. And oh do the hells love to target each of us. But maybe we can take comfort in that. They wouldn’t try to tear us down if we weren’t going places, if we weren’t on our way to achieving great heights. After all, they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength and mount up with wings like eagles, right? Hell hates that. And it will spew a whole lot of stagnant, poisoned floodwaters at us to scare us out of the sky. But with God-given wings we can always soar out of harm’s way.
I guess the trick, and it’s one that I know I have to learn over and over again, is to stay humble, but to not let humility turn into caving in on ourselves and neglecting the powerful ways we can live our lives and make the world a kinder place. To know that we are small, but valued. To truly believe that we were made to be great in countless ways, but only with the Lord’s help. Without Him, we are nothing. But we are never without Him, so we are something amazing. With His love and truth as our wings, we can overcome anything.
“But now, thus says the Lord, who created you, O Jacob, And He who formed you, O Israel: “Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by your name; You are Mine.”
“I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Marvelous are Your works, And that my soul knows very well.”
“Then the disciples came to Jesus privately and said, “Why could we not cast [the demon] out?”
So Jesus said to them, “Because of your unbelief; for assuredly, I say to you, if you have faith as a mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move; and nothing will be impossible for you.”
“Every valley shall be exalted And every mountain and hill brought low; The crooked places shall be made straight And the rough places smooth; The glory of the Lord shall be revealed, And all flesh shall see it together; For the mouth of the Lord has spoken.”
Isaiah 40: 4-5
But those who wait on the Lord Shall renew their strength;
They shall mount up with wings like eagles,
They shall run and not be weary,
They shall walk and not faint.