For many years, I have enjoyed listening to Queen Elizabeth's message on Christmas Day. This past Christmas, the Queen mentioned the importance of small steps leading to great change. She said that this was consistent with the teachings of Jesus.
Indeed, there are many references in the Bible to this fact. One of the best-known would be the time that a young boy gladly gave his lunch to the disciples. In turn, Jesus used this small step to feed thousands.
Perhaps the most profound teaching of the consequences of small steps leading to great change is the parable of the sheep and the goats:
Matthew 25:40 – The King will reply, "I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me." (NIV)
Imagine doing something kind to a troubled person, only to learn that you had done something for God Almighty!
Every day, we have opportunities to take small steps that could lead to something big. Here are two examples of the power of simple friendliness.
I am part of a growing market called "seniors". Many corporations are seizing the opportunity of building facilities to serve this segment of the population. Large sums of money are spent describing how wonderful each new facility is. Accordingly, it is common for prospective residents and their children to visit different facilities to see if they match their advertisements.
A lady who recently moved in to our facility told me that she had visited several where she felt unwelcome. In contrast, she said that the first resident whom she met upon entering our home greeted her with a friendly "Hello!"
Sylvia said that she immediately decided that she should move here, and she has been happy ever since. All the expensive marketing campaigns were less powerful than the small step of a person greeting a stranger in a friendly manner.
Once a month, our building manager has a meeting with the residents to inform us of anything significant. One of his announcements seemed somewhat strange to us. He requested that we smile and greet the mailman who delivers our mail faithfully throughout the year.
He explained that the mailman had said that he likes coming to our building because the residents are so friendly and make him feel welcome. Sadly, he said that this was not the case in other buildings that he serviced. Our manager encouraged us to keep up the good reputation.
The challenge for me and you is to keep spreading God's love in positive ways. Small steps like a smile or a simple greeting may seem very insignificant. They certainly are easy steps to take. But as the Bible teaches, we never know where they might lead.
Prayer: Dear Father, help us to be faithful in taking small steps to share Your love. In Jesus' name, we pray. Amen.
Listen to this devotional
Listen while you read: "Tis So Sweet To Trust In Jesus" (Lyrics)