From the Greatest to the Least

Posted under The Rectory Bulletin | Providence

“Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? And not one of them will fall to the ground apart from your Father. But even the hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear not, therefore; you are of more value than many sparrows. So everyone who acknowledges me before men, I also will acknowledge before my Father who is in heaven, but whoever denies me before men, I also will deny before my Father who is in heaven.” (Matthew 10:29–33)

How easy it is to feel small and overlooked, especially in a world which is preoccupied with celebrity and the number of followers you can rustle up on social media. One of the unfortunate side effects of a more populous society is that it makes each individual member feel smaller. It is easy to be known in a village of two hundred people, but to live in a flat in the centre of a modern city is to be anonymous.

There is a great error in thinking that this state of affairs applies in the spiritual realm, as if a God is overwhelmed by the sheer number of people teeming on the surface of the planet. As if God only notices the important and the noisy. As if God’s loving oversight only extends to the major things. No, as Jesus insists in this passage not even a sparrows falls “to the ground apart from your father”. That small, brown bird - like all the other small brown birds - which pecks away on your driveway is known by God. How much more does God notice and care for you?! In fact, as Jesus asserts, God not only notices but knows all people, even down to the number of hairs on your head.

Never feel too unimportant to raise your voice to heaven, or think something is too trivial to bring before God. God may guide the affairs of the nations, but he also notices the individual. He is concerned with the greatest and the least.

The Divine Controller

At the end of the days I, Nebuchadnezzar, lifted my eyes to heaven, and my reason returned to me, and I blessed the Most High, and praised and honoured him who lives forever, for his dominion is an everlasting dominion, and his kingdom endures from generation to generation; all the inhabitants of the earth are accounted as nothing, and he does according to his will among the host of heaven and among the inhabitants of the earth; and none can stay his hand or say to him, “What have you done?” (Daniel 4:34–35) - God needs no more from us, than the model railway builder needs from the little tiny model of a dog. To know God as almighty, is to regain a sense of things being under control.

Wise and Holy

“The eyes of the LORD are in every place, keeping watch on the evil and the good.” (Proverbs 15:3) “O LORD, how manifold are your works! In wisdom have you made them all; the earth is full of your creatures.” (Psalm 104:24) “The LORD is righteous in all his ways and kind in all his works.” (Psalm 145:17) - Power may corrupt imperfect human beings, but fortunately for us God is not a bigger version of a human. He is good. His is not corruptible.

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