It’s No Small Thing

Gwen Smith Blog, Christian Living, Devotions, Encouragement, Humility, Prayer, Priorities, Worship, Worship 48 Comments

A friend sent this text: “I thought of you when I read Numbers 16:9 today!”

Does it seem a small thing to you that the God of Israel has chosen you from among all the people of Israel to be near Him as you serve in the Lord’s tabernacle and to stand before the people to minister to them? (Numbers 16:9, NET Bible)

She texted again: “God chose you to serve Him in this tabernacle of flesh, to stand, talk, and to sing before people to minister to them.”

I thanked her and shook my head. No, it’s not a small thing at all. It is an honor: one that I don’t deserve, but for the healing, life-changing, grace of Jesus.

She probably thought of me because I serve on stage, in a visible position. I get it. But I have to tell you this, even though she thought of me, I thought of YOU.

And you should too.

Why? Because every person who places her faith in Jesus becomes a part of His plan: to know Him intimately and impact others for His glory. No microphone required. No Bible degree needed. You don’t have to be a pastor, ministry director, Sunday school teacher, elder, or deacon.

Several gems rise to the surface of this Scripture as I look it over. As a member of the body of Christ, God’s chosen, I must…

MAKE IT PERSONAL

This verse is a question. Does it seem a small thing to you…?

In other words, do you realize how awesome it is that you get to do something to express your love for God? Do you understand what a privilege it is to know and serve the One who knows and loves you best… the One who redeems broken lives from the pit and crowns them with love and compassion… the One who forgives, heals, holds, restores, guides, and helps? (I’m jumping up and down here!)

I know my answer. I may forget it sometimes in my selfishness, but today I know my answer. You?

On to the next gem…

BE NEAR HIM

“…the God of Israel has chosen you from among all the people of Israel to be near Him…”

It’s easy to feel isolated, rejected, unwanted, and unappreciated. Right? Most of us do at times. This reminds me that our Creator loves His creation. And He wants us near Him. (In spite of the fact that He fully knows who we are, the ways we’ve failed, the rules we’ve broken, the habits that trip us up, and the stubborn heart-places that are yet to be refined.)

This invitation to His presence is personal. Gem. Gem. Gem.

And there’s more…

SERVE HIM and STAND BEFORE THE PEOPLE to MINISTER to THEM

“…as you serve in the Lord’s tabernacle …”

Where? At church. Ahem. Yep. It pretty much says that.

To be clear, the church is the body of Christ. The church is people. Us. But we often meet in places as groups that need each of us to step up and pitch in. Before you and I can breathe our excuses…

I’m too busy

I’m not good with kids

They already have piano players

I don’t know the Bible well enough

I really don’t want to…

We need to acknowledge that we are all called to serve one another. No easy pass here.

(Of course we also serve God at home as we chase tireless toddlers, prepare meals, wash dishes, and clean endless piles of laundry. And we serve Him at work as we go about our jobs with excellence, as we behave with a dignity and joy that makes others wonder about our God, and as we honor our bosses, counterparts, and subordinates. Yes. Yes. Yes.)

My final observation? The order of it all: Him. Him. Them.

Seek God (Him). Serve God (Him). Serve others (them).

Does that seem a small thing?

Experiencing the power and pleasure of God while seeking and serving Him in His tabernacle is surely no small thing. When we minister to those people who bless, but also stretch, stress, and strain us, we do so in Jesus’ name, for HIS glory. Not for our own.

It’s time to stop dismissing, doubting, or avoiding opportunities to serve.

Dive in. Sign up. Fill a need.

Shake a few hands, vacuum a carpet, push a wheelchair, welcome first time guests who feel out of place and need a friendly smile, pray with the burdened, change a diaper, take a meal, speak truth, make coffee, teach, love, lead, serve.

Use what you’ve been given BY God FOR God.

Be the body of Christ and share His beautiful grace by serving His people.

Service is beautiful. And you have been chosen.

 

Lord, Let that be me. I recognize that it is no small thing to seek you, serve you, and minister to others. Please rid my heart of my agenda and replace it with Yours so that You might be honored and that Your name might be lifted high in and through my life.
In Jesus’ name, amen.

 

FOR YOUR REFLECTION and RESPONSE

READ: what Jesus said in Mark 10:45. “For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.”

READ: 1 Peter 4:10. “Each one should use whatever gift he has received to serve others, faithfully administering God’s grace in its various forms.”

READ: Colossians 3:23-24. “Work willingly at whatever you do, as though you were working for the Lord rather than for people. Remember that the Lord will give you an inheritance as your reward, and that the Master you are serving is Christ.”

CONSIDER how God has uniquely gifted you and PRAY about what steps to take next. {Feel free to post your prayer on my wall so that others might be encouraged!}

Happy New Year! 🙂 Thanks for doing life with me! I totally realize that it’s NO small thing. {See what I did there? You are loved! #hugs}

GWEN

 

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Comments 48

  1. Father, your great love and favor are wonderful. You have given each one of us specific gifts, talents, and callings! At the same, you have also anointed each one of us differently. I pray each one of us seek after and grab hold of what God is calling us to do and that we go forward in the power and anointing of God, doing everything into you without complaint and in a way where we will never feel overwhelmed! As for myself, I pray that I begin to use my gift of writing as you lead. I pray that you give me new songs and teach me an instrument so my perimeters can be expanded as to where I am called to minister. I also need to worship you more in my own spare time which will in turn be a way of practicing as well. Lead me in the right songs for worship and prepare any who are in my presence to receive what you have given me for them. In my work-life, help me to find new and inventive ways to accomplish what I need to. May my clients always and only see Jesus and because of that they would come to know of your unfailing life-changing love! I would like to write skits and dramas as well Lord, so please make a way for me to do that and make a way for me to connect with the right people so they can reach others in this world! I know you have called me great things so here I am Lord…Take me in! Thank you, amen.

  2. I pray that God will reveal my gifts and lead me where he wants me to go. I am so willing to go where He leads. At times I feel as if my own desires are leading the way and not where God would have me go. Where He leads I will follow.

  3. I have a calling to care for His sheep. I always wanted to be a nurse, it never worked out. However I have been many opportunities to care for people this way. My husband and I feel we have been in training and are now being called to open a adult foster home. Thank you Lord!

  4. Most Gracious Father, who am I that YOU are so mindful of me??? I can’t get away from this question when I consider this unbelievable place I’m in with YOU? I just didn’t know it was possible to get to know YOU this way. Thank YOU for considering me worth dying for. The marvelous exchange…Your life for mine…I could never repay. However, it is my desire to give you the very best of me: praising, praying, worshipping, serving, feeding your sheep, and loving as YOU have commanded. Help me to stay focused & to remember that it was not a small thing when YOU chose me. I never want to disppoint YOU by failing to understand the honor & privilege any and every time YOU give me the assignment to minister to YOUR people. So please, since YOU know me better than I know myself, keep me humble, keep me before YOU, and make my name great in the Kingdom;.not for vain glory LORD, but for YOUR glory. And I can’t end this prayer without thanking you for the vessels of Girlfriends in God. Thank you for leading me and some of my Sisters in Christ to this devotional. I pray they know the blessing they are and that it really is no small thing to us…these daily devotionals. LORD, I pray that. YOUR grace abound in every area of their lives & give them strength divine…in the name of JESUS…AMEN!!!

  5. Thank you for today’s reading as I always appreciate your devotion readings. I am so encouraged to step up to live the life the Lord has prepared that I will remember today’s words of God, Numbers 16:9.

  6. I find this helpful in my current season in life. I am going through a divorce, My Manager has slandered my name, discriminated against me, and gossiped about me all within the span of 3 months. I find myself grateful. In this trying time I know that I serve an all redeeming, loving, merciful Lord. No matter what is happening in my life he has placed a roof over my head, he has provided for me and my 4 children, he has sheltered my heart from the storm. I feel the rain but I am not cold. I don’t understand why these things have happened or why people are so ugly sometimes, but I am reassured that My Lord and Saviors Endures Forever!

  7. Precious Savior, thank you for using Gwen to speak and encourage me I want to serve you more life itself, to spend more time with you; while the world slept you were with your Father, this is the desire of my heart: may I live the purpose for which I was born. Thank you, Jesus, I love you and praise you. In your name I pray, Amen

  8. Haven’t considered how blessed I have been to be used by God to minister to so many through the years. Thanks for the reminder. Although I am in a season of rest right now from public ministry. I believe God is preparing me for something more in the future. I would appreciate prayers as I seek His will regarding my future.

  9. Heavenly Father you have blessed and enriched me in so many ways. You gave me a talent of helping others now I want to continue to expound on this. I pray that you walk with me as I journey to the service of you, praising you, and serving others. Amen

  10. Heavenly Father it is through you that I have the things I need so help me to move into the service of you and others to make me a stronger person. You are my Light and my Salvation. Amen

  11. Thank you so much for this beautiful devotion and nudge. God brings such joy when He allows me to walk alongside Him as He loves on someone in need. Yesterday I go to go hold a baby for an hour and a half so a young new mom could sleep. She was so thankful, but i felt deeply blessed also. Although I got to give her relief, I had the privilege of holding one of God’s newly earth born daughters. It was very humbling. Life truly feels abundant when I am helping alongside God. what an Amazing and wonderful and giving God we have.

  12. This spoke to me loud and clear this morning. God has been nudging me and I have been trying to figure out what He wants me to do. Step out of my comfort zone, that’s what. I struggle with this, though I do serve in my family and extended family. 2018 is a year of change for me. I need to step up and put God in front of me in everything I do. Thank you, Gwen, for your insight.

  13. What great direction these words give me this morning. As a band director in a Christian School, the burden of my heart over the last few days has been, “How do I meet the NONmusical needs of these kids?” “How do I make band a positive experience for the kids that are here not because music is their life, but because they need a place to belong, a group to be part of?” Ministry! Music is quite possibly NOT the main thing, here! I realize that God has placed me there, It is NOT a small thing, and He will give me the answers to these questions as I daily tap into His power through prayer and Bible reading. AND, it is not a small thing that God has placed those students there, with their own purpose to minister to those around them! Amen!

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    2. I ma simply a reader here, but thank you for this response. I love knowing the God has planted you in a school to spread His love through those students!

  14. Hey Gwen, I️ am so encouraged by all of your Girlfriend from God devotions. Each one of you gals speak to me each day and are the perfect way for me to connect with Our Lord and Savior. You don’t know how much you are all appreciated. Your devtions are something to look forward to each morning and get reinforcements to fight the battle ahead. Thank you all for your service. Yes you are all so blessed to be able to witness and encourage others each day. So hoping every gift God has given me is being used to serve Him with honor also!

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      Thank you, Heidi. I’m humbled to hear how God uses His body as a source of encouragement to one another. He’s so good!!

      With love,
      Gwen

  15. Dear Lord, Let me use my talents in ways that are pleasing to you. Let my efforts enhance the spiritual presence as they seek solace and peace.

  16. Dear Lord, speak to me and enlighten the the Holy Spirit inside of me. Open my eyes to opportunities to become new each day; not to wallow in my fear of failure but to celebrate my life you have given me. Guide me to be your voice and share my love of you time and time again.
    I am grateful for all that you have bestowed upon me. I am blessed beyond measure with a wonderful family shelter food and good health. Thank you for your blessings. Thank you for choosing me to be your child.
    In your name I pray.

  17. Lord I pray this morning you would help me to see myself through your lenses and not take the gift of life you have given me for granted but to use the skills and talents you have given me for your glory in Jesus name Amen.

  18. I to find myself feeling along in my doing especially when my husband is been bitter toward me. But as I read Gods word it make me more aware of all the many things he has done for us all. Make me want to pray more for others do better were I work and think more about helping others.

  19. Lord, I thank you for being faithful to us always. Lord you know the plans you have for us please make them clear to us, May we follow those plans. Lord you will not lead us astray. Lord I want to glorify you and please you in all that I do. I am so grateful for.my family we are so blessed I have to trust you. Speak to me Holy Spirit.

  20. I sometimes think of those who have had a second child for the purpose of providing
    for a medical need of the first child,for saving the life of first child. What if we we’re born with the mission to save the life of another? I think we all we’re made for a time such as this. For me; perhaps I was created to care for my mother or for my grandaughter.My prayer is to serve gladly.

  21. Lord, I pray that my family and I will find a home church soon and we can serve in the capacity you have chosen. Lord, please show me or my other family members the way. Thank you Father, in Jesus name, I ask. Amen.

  22. I was interrupted when I 1st started reading “It’s No Small Thing”
    So glad I went back and re-read it.
    My prayer is that I always remember to thank God for this calling to serve Him in the way He has called me…way out of my comfort zone and into another way of serving that is way beyond myself. Only with Him by my side holding me up…and together will I continue on.
    My life changed when I agreed to become a live-in home care giver to a long time friend who had stage 2 cervical cancer and a stroke…she is a very independent woman..but has replace the Lord in heart with bitterness and anger. God is always finding ways to remind me that serving here is for His honor and glory not my own… in my service for Him in serving my friend… I made it clear I would not walk away from my faith or my church family, my friend made a promise that she would make sure ‘we’ would go to church… and so far she has kept her word.
    Pray that transportation improves or my truck is fixed soon otherwise we both will be missing out on some of the service each Sunday.
    I am thankful for this opportunity to serve and my prayer is to keep walking and professing the Lord in this situation so that my friend can she how God is working in my life and that she learn to trust Him again with hers.

  23. This is fantastic Gwen! I’m trying to think of the best ways to get this out to everyone in our church -,especially those that Come week after week and never get involved- they are missing out on God’s blessings and don’t even know it🙁

  24. Praise His Name! For always relaying the right messages at the right time through each of us that serve him. The Struggle is real yall; but God is More than that! Thank You Gwen for allowing God to use you on such a platform. Beautiful message and i know what i got to do now… 🙂

  25. Lord, I pray that I recognize what you are calling me to. That I willingly step into your plan with out reservation and live your purpose and path for my life! Thank you for the unknown, for it is there that I know you will use me. I pray this in the Mighty Name of Jesus.

  26. Lord, I pray that I recognize what you are calling me to. That I willingly step into your plan with out reservation and live your purpose and path for my life! Thank you for the unknown, for it is there that I know you will use me. I pray this in the Mighty Name of Jesus.

  27. If I didn’t know my God lives and heals and forgives I wouldn’t be here today.I will cling to the old rugged cross and exchange it someday for a crown. Thank you Gwen for this beautiful reminder.

  28. Gwen, thank you very much for your rich encouragement!! God is so Awesome and Faithful and His Grace and Mercy is so wonderful!!! Without God, I am totally lost!!! Please pray that I grow stronger in Him!!! Thank you Gwen…God Bless you even more abundantly!!! ❤️❤️❤️

  29. This has empowered me to do something I’ve been putting off for a while now. I shall join a ministry! This is officially my calling. Thanks Gwen.

  30. Lord
    I thank you for being with me in my struggles for the last two weeks.I knew that I was under spiritual attack but God I cried out to you and you heard my prayer.
    Please pray for me for the grace to stand strong and to serve and do his will.
    Blessings
    Patricia

  31. Dear Sweet Lord,
    I thank you for the gifts of discernment and encouragement. Please do not let the trials in life keep me from lifting others up in their time of need. I pray you continue to fill me with your gift of the Holy Spirit that I may know that what I see and hear are all part of a spiritual warfare. Let me not be shaken from the path you have put me on and keep me ever mindful that you have already conquered all battles we face with your most precious sacrifice of self. I relish in the knowledge that you deem me worthy of your love. I love you with every fiber of my being and I am yours. Thank you for every minute of every day. In your precious name I praise and pray. Amen

  32. Thank you, Gwen! I SOOOO needed this today! I am treasurer and custodian of our church and though it often goes unnoticed, I am reminded of WHOM I serve and WHY I am serving. I am reassured GOD has me, right where HE wants me! GOD bless YOU! Thank you for your inspiration!

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  33. Please pray for me that I will know how I’m suppose to serve and my body and
    Emotions will be healed please be with my family and my son will be okay

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