The Small Things Matter
We have 535 voting members of Congress. They ear mark billions of dollars year in and year out on pet projects that add relatively little value. For example, there was $18.9 million earmarked for the Edward M. Kennedy Institute for the Study of the Senate in Boston. Study of the Senate? Then there is the $4.8 million ear marked for wood utilization research in 11 states. It is estimated that this research has cost taxpayers over $100 million since 1985.
Now you might say 4.8 million is a lot of money to waste on an insignificant research project. However, to a politician it is nothing. It is all relative. What is a million dollars when you have 18 trillion dollars of debt? After all, a trillion dollars is a million, million. It is like using a credit card that already has 15,000 worth of debt, a $30,000 credit limit and deciding you want a brand new pair of shoes that costs $400. What is another $400? You already have $15,000 of debt and the ability to double that debt balance. That $400 debt isn’t going to move the needle. Nor is 5 million dollars when you already have 18 trillion dollars of debt and an unlimited credit limit.
Now imagine 535 members of Congress acting individually wasting a few million here and a few million there. Individually is doesn’t seem like much. Collectively, it adds up to a real significant amount of money.
Luke 16:10 says “Whoever can be trusted with very little can also be trusted with much, and whoever is dishonest with very little will also be dishonest with much.”
In God’s economy every dollar has significance. It is given to us to be good stewards or managers of it. The habits we develop with the individual dollar will ultimately translate into the habits we exhibit with larger amounts of dollars. Prudent stewardship is treating every dollar as being important and not something you can waste. Now the next 3 verses beyond 16:10 are key in understanding the small things and stewardship.
11 So if you have not been trustworthy in handling worldly wealth, who will trust you with true riches? 12 And if you have not been trustworthy with someone else’s property, who will give you property of your own? 13 “No one can serve two masters. Either you will hate the one and love the other, or you will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money.”
The message of Luke 16:13 is the message of stewardship. It is the exact same verse repeated in Matthew 6:24. Two times for emphasis. It gives meaning to the prior versus by saying two things.
First, there is a significant relationship between the Christian, God, and money. How we prioritize those relationships will ultimately determine the quality of our relationship with God. Second, stewardship of what God gives us is extremely important. Handling the big items is easy. However, it is the care and significance we give to the small things that proves to be the most difficult. It is much easier to waste than take the time to manage. However, it is the handling of the small things that strengthen our sense of stewardship that directly effects our overall relationship with God.
How we handle worldly wealth determines how we receive true riches. Worldly wealth is every dollar. True riches are the riches (not to imply money – but abundance of life) that only God can give.
Therein lies the significance of the small things!