Why is being faithful in the little things so important? We encounter this Biblical concept a lot of places in Scripture, but two stories that stand out in their exhortation about our faithfulness to small things come from stories Jesus tells in Luke 16:10 and Luke 19:17.
The first story involves the concept of money and who and what we serve. And the second story involves servants being entrusted by their master to do business for him with something not their own and how they respond.
“He who is faithful in a very little thing is faithful also in much; and he who is unrighteous in a very little thing is unrighteous also in much.” ~ Luke 16:10~(NASB)
“And [the master] said to [the servant], ‘Well done, good servant; because you were faithful in a very little, have authority over ten cities.’” ~Luke 19:17~
Sometimes little things can feel like a waste of time or an inconvenience, but it is these little things that often speak the loudest about who we are and whether or not we can be trusted to be faithful in more.
One of the reasons we know we can trust God is because He is faithful to every part of who and what He promises to be, and He does not changed.
“For I am the LORD, I do not change . . . ” ~Malachi 3:6~
“Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and comes down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow of turning.” ~James 1:17~
“ . . . know that the LORD your God, He is God, the faithful God . . . ” ~Deuteronomy 7:9~
Jesus tells the story of the servant who was praises for his faithful response and therefore given more responsibility and opportunities to be faithful. This means of discovering people who will be honest and responsible even when no one else is watching them, is a wise person’s way of knowing who they can and cannot trust.
But what happens once a person has been given the big things to be responsible for? Is it then okay for them to let the little things slide? After all the bigger your responsibilities the more those responsibilities will require time and effort from you, and the more it might seem reasonable to allow the small things to fall by the wayside. This approach accomplishes the big things, but does it keep trust?
What if letting the little things slide was what God did?
What if God stopped faithfully clothing the grass of the field (Mat 6:30)? Or what if He let slide caring about the sparrows (Mat 10:29)? Or what if God simply failed to continue to regard it necessary to hold the water back (Psa 33:7)? God is faithful in the little things as well as the big things and is thus fully trustworthy. If God stopped for even a moment being faithful in the little things that He does, our lives and our trust in Him would be physically and emotionally decimated.
As humans, we are flawed individuals, but in Christ we are new creatures. The old has passed away and the new has been given. Let us walk in newness of life accurately reflecting the life of Christ by being faithful in all that what we do, big and small, even when no human is watching.
“Therefore we were buried with Him through baptism into death, that just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life. For if we have been united together in the likeness of His death, certainly we also shall be in the likeness of His resurrection, knowing this, that our old man was crucified with Him, that the body of sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves of sin.” ~Romans 6: 4-6~
Not only does being faithful in the little things reflect Christ, but it also keeps us from sin.
The fall of many prominent church leaders did not result because they failed to preach sermons on Sundays, show up for church meetings, or make decisions for the church. No, their issues started when they stopped being faithful in little things, like their thought life toward money, women, power, etc. Their unfaithfulness in their thoughts turn into unfaithfulness in their decisions and actions, and then what was little became big. Because whereas being faithful in little things leads to being faithful in much, so too is it true that, being unfaithful in little things leads to being unfaithful in much. Just as Luke 16:10 says.
Challenge: Our choices have an impact on others and ourselves. Choose faithfulness to God in all you do regardless of how big or small those choices and actions are. (Joshua 22:5)