The Little Things
You are the God who performs miracles. . . .—Psalm 77:14 (niv)
In the last few years I have been graced by a correspondence with a man who is in prison until the day he dies. “I deserve to be here,” he says, “and all I ask is the chance after I die to apologize to God face to face for wasting His gifts. But maybe I would never have seen those gifts so clear if I wasn’t here.”
I go back through his letters, noting all the things he has written, painstakingly, in blue ink on loose-leaf paper, about gifts that are new every morning.
“Good old rain. Crawdads, woodpeckers, church choirs. The way people line up for things like buses and voting and never jostle. Dragonflies over ponds. Sandwiches made by someone who likes you. Good old towels. Toast with jam not from a factory. Toasters. Fried trout in butter. Teachers. Mud with a point to it, like in gardens and farms. Animals. Big birds that are not scared of you, like hawks. Jars on shelves. Berries on bushes. People talking to you who don’t want anything from you. Folks making music with real instruments somewhere close, but you can’t see them, only hear them faintly. That’s a great sound, that is.
“I used to think that the thing I missed the most was pets. I sure wanted a dog around; dogs are just the best. But now the thing I miss the most is kids around. I’ll just never have kids around underfoot, laughing and yelling and arguing and falling asleep in half a second right wherever they landed last. If ever I do get to see God face to face and can ask one favor, I’d ask for kids around again. That’s what heaven is, seems to me.”
Dear Lord, there are no little things, are there? I mean, You know that, but we forget. Nothing’s little. Everything’s huge and holy and so stuffed with miracle, the miracles leak out, laughing. Thanks. And, Lord, hey, a little favor? Can You salt our awful jails with a little extra hope today?
Written by Brian Doyle
Digging Deeper: Jas 1:17
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