Though there are a lot of definite advantages to smallness and the view of life it brings, there also some major struggles to deal with. One of the big ones is getting a good grip on your sense of worth. Right about now you’re thinking, “Dude, chill out a sec. That subject’s pretty heavy. This is only your second post, man. Why don’t you just, like, save that one or later?” (Ok, so maybe you don’t sound like that, but my brain voice is still a bit stuck in the late 90’s, early 2000’s.) Well, you’re right. It is heavy, but it’s also very important. I want to build a foundation upon which we can judge the pro’s and con’s of smallness. “THE BIBLE!” (No need to holler, you guys. I’ve been to Sunday School. I teach Sunday School for Pete’s sakes.) Yes, of course, the Bible. But that’s a bit general. I want to lay a foundation from the Bible about what our worth is and where it comes from. From that basis we can then differentiate between the profitable aspects of smallness and the ones that, well, need to be deported and replaced with edifying aspects. This topic is a lesson I began to learn long ago in a faraway counseling session, when I wasn’t quite ready to receive it.
During the course of being counseled, over an intensive weekend series of sessions, my counselor asked me to stand up and handed me a coaster off from the coffee table. He explained that the coaster was my worth, and that I should hang on to it until I figured out who the right person was to give it to. I wasn’t really understanding the point so I went to hand it to one of the other people in the room (who were there to help me) but the counselor stopped me from handing it off. Confused, I tried a different person for a different reason. But I was again prevented. I knew the third person wouldn’t be acceptable for the same reason as the first (whatever that was), so I tried handing it back to the counselor. He vehemently refused to take it. Wasn’t anybody allowed to have my worth? To see it? To hold it? Nope. After giving me a second to have some deep thoughts, the counselor then told me to put the coaster in my pocket, so I did. I didn’t know why my pocket suddenly became OK when people I loved apparently weren’t. But sure. I’d play the game. Then he told me to take my hand out of my pocket and never put it back in, because I wasn’t even allowed to have the coaster. It was to stay in my pocket where I could feel it and others could see its vague outline, but where Jesus could hold it and keep it safe for me. Only He could see it there, and only he had the power to do anything with it. My own worth is too strong a power to give to any person other than God.
A person who lives with a sense of smallness like myself finds many opportunities to hand his coaster over to someone big. Someone important. She can give her coaster to a boy, thinking that he can hold her worth. He can hand is coaster to his father, thinking that surely his father, if anyone, can hold it well. But the boy can use it to get out of her things she would never give if he did not hold her worth; the father can hold it in a clenched fist and bludgeon his poor soul with it every time he fails to meet the expectations of the family name. Do these sound familiar? These are the dangers many people face, but especially those of us with smallness. We keep trying to hand our coasters out to friends, family, bosses, church leaders, etc. They have become beaten, tattered, torn, and small. Anybody that has added to the size of your coaster has likely broken off more than they added by the time you retrieve it, and now you look at it. It’s gross. It’s dirty. Your worth doesn’t seem to be ‘worth’ anything. But that’s because you haven’t given it to Christ, the only one powerful enough to protect it, heal it, and show you the true bigness of the worth you have as one who has salvation in Him.
Colossians 3:1-4 “If then you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth. For you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. When Christ who is your life appears, then you also will appear with him in glory.” (ESV)
Titus 3:5 …“He saved us, not because of works done by us in righteousness, but according to his own mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewal of the Holy Spirit…” (ESV)