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Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Small Stuff

No this blog is not in reference to Andrea's height. It is about doing the small stuff of life and that through the small stuff we really see our character. I thought that sometimes we tend to over look the little things we can do in life and seek the grand events to prove our value. But really that is not the case, it is the daily events of life that really speak to our character and what we believe. It is in these small consistent acts that speak to others.

Andrea and I had hoped and prayed and believed she would be healed. We would think of the great praise and glory God would receive in this miracle. I imagine some of you thought that yourself. Did you think of the lives that would have been changed when Andrea was healed? When her life was snatched from the clutches of certain death. Trust me I did. I thought what better way for God to revel Himself, what could be more perfect then for Andrea to stand before a crowd and be a witness of God's amazing power. In my mind there that was the perfect outcome and I just wanted to write the script and hand it to God as if to say, “Here you go I have it all worked out, just wait for this ending!”

But it was not His will, and many of us struggled with this. She seemed like the perfect candidate for a miracle didn't she? She had so much faith in spite of all her suffering and she never quite praising God. I remember one day in particular. I hope I never forget it. Andrea was sick once again. Her bouts with vomiting were back again. I don't even remember what drug she was on, but I think it was around February 2007 when she was on a new chemo treatment which particularly hard. Anyway it was a Saturday and Andrea felt sick to her stomach. I walked back into our bedroom and heard Andrea in the bathroom throwing up. I went in as I always did to rub her back, pray for her and just sit with her. When I walked in she was sitting on the floor exhausted from vomiting. It was then that I witnessed one of the most powerful examples of her faith. She went to vomit again and in between throwing up she would stop and thank God for His blessings and praise His name. I went to her and held her and began to pray for her but I will never forget walking in on her and seeing her vomit and then praise God at the same time. She refused to give into the sickness. In that small act I saw the character of Andrea.

I thought this week about how I had envisioned God's perfect plan, Andrea being healed and her being in the spot light giving glory to God. I could not help but think back to that moment in our bathroom. I thought which instance really spoke louder of who Andrea was and the God she served? Then I realized that God does not need the spot light to bring attention to Himself. I found this sentence I had written during church in 2006:

Our failures do not limit God
Our successes do not enable God

Although what I had hoped would be, was not. I realized sometimes it may have been more about my pride of wanting to be in the spot light then it was about serving God. Now God has asked me to serve in a way I would not have chosen. Sometimes our loudest statement about who we are can be spoken in the smallest of acts. And that is what I think about when I think of Andrea's life. It was never my desire to write this blog, but I do. I do so knowing God used Andrea's death in ways I never understood and I know in ways I will not see until I stand before Him.

Last Friday I saw a practical example of this during our weekly PT run at work. I had finished my run and was trying to recover from my blistering 10 min mile pace. As I sat down to catch my breath I watched Lance our PT leader. He had finished his run which is usually twice as far as my run and somehow he seems to finish in less time. As each person approached the finish line, about 100 yards out, Lance would run to meet them and pace them for the last part of their run. As he dropped of each person at the finish line he would turn around and go meet the next person. He did this over and over until everyone had finished their run. At the same time Rene, our other PT leader, would cheer each person as they crossed the finish line.

As I sat there I saw how these simple acts by Lance and Rene spoke so much about their character. They are both great workers and given any task their skills shine. But I doubt anything could speak to me louder to me then what I saw that day because it was not done for anyone to see. There was no personal gain in their actions; it was a simple act of service which I doubt many people even noticed. As I got up to go home I thought about how Lance and Rene were much like Andrea. Their acts of service were not for the praise of others, it was just to serve. It was not done in the spotlight, but in the background.

I thought that all of us have this opportunity every day and sometimes we miss them when we see our only value in the grand acts of life. I realized it is in the small stuff that what we believe really comes out. I think about how I would imagine what I would do if I won the lottery. How I would give to those in need but really that would not happen unless I'm that way right now with the small amount of money God has entrusted to me. Why do we sometimes think who we are or our character will change? I venture to say we would act the same if we won 100 million as we do with 100 dollars we have right now.

Mark 12:41-44

Now Jesus sat opposite the treasury and saw how the people put money into the treasury. And many who were rich put in much. Then one poor widow came and threw in two mites, which make a quadrans. So He called His disciples to Himself and said to them, “Assuredly, I say to you that this poor widow has put in more than all those who have given to the treasury; for they all put in out of their abundance, but she out of her poverty put in all that she had, her whole livelihood.”

We need to remember is that God does not need us in the spotlight to serve nor does our worth need to be in the grand. That sometimes He just asks us to just live to be a witness. And that is really how we show our true character and our true beliefs. As the saying goes,

“Always be ready to preach and if you have to use words.”


  1. Jim,
    This post was especially meaningful to me. God used your words to remind me to always remember every word and action is to glorify Him.
    Sally E