Such a small creature, a tiny little thing had been my daughter-in-law's constant companion while she toiled at unyielding, winter-hard ground. Pausing from her labours, she would smile to see him perched nearby, before attending to her garden again with renewed gusto.
As spring segues into summer, daylight lengthens and myriad feathered friends come to the bird feeder, this faithful little robin is still present, hopping to and fro with an inner felicity born of knowing his place in the scheme of things.
He doesn't seek attention or strive for prominence. He's just happily going about his own sweet thing: gathering, gleaning, feeding, singing and celebrating life.
I wonder if we are so easily pleased with small, if we can celebrate seasons where God calls us to be still, to be small, labouring behind the scenes on our own (often challenging) plot—the fertile garden of the soul where few know we are secretly tending God-sized dreams within our hearts?
Maybe we long for significance, ache to be seen, to have worth and value in the eyes of others, for our voice to be heard. Or we could be prayerfully cultivating things only God sees and knows about, while He works within our stilled, surrendered soul.
As I watched the robin at play in the warmth of sun's rays, I saw his shadow extending beyond his petite frame. It loomed larger than he was. Likewise, as we seek to serve God and potter faithfully through our days, we are casting a holy shadow larger than ourselves, as He shines in and through us.
Our lives may feel small, insignificant, our work endless and unrewarding, but if we were given eyes to see how God sees things, what then? He watches the shadow we cast as we labour under the sun. God observes and rejoices in every act, every deed done in love, in His Name, watching their reach extend much further than we know, preoccupied as we are with the tasks before us.
Nothing we do in love is ever too small or insignificant to count. The caring cards, texts or emails you send, those encouraging words you write and share, the gifts you so generously give and persistent prayers you pray, every act of mercy and grace we perform adds up in God's Kingdom economy.
We are apt to prize the strong, vibrant, shining, vociferous ones who look and sound like they know what they're doing. God pays close attention to the lost, lonely and hurting, the quiet ones leading humble, sacrificial lives, the people who prize His attention above all earthly things.
We can take heart from being weak and largely invisible to the world, knowing God notices and does so much more through us than we could ever achieve by ourselves. And in similar ways to the Apostle Peter, the Holy Spirit-lit shadow we cast as we walk through this world has potential to reach out and affect the lives of others for good.
The more we live in the Light of God's presence, content to stay small so He can be large in our lives, the greater Holy Spirit shadow we will cast to bathe a hurting world in God's mercy, grace and love, His tender, healing touch.
Lenton is a grateful grace dweller, contemplative Christian writer,
poet and blogger, author of 'Seeking
Solace: Discovering grace in life's hard places'.
She enjoys encouraging others on their journey of life and faith at
her blogs wordsofjoy.me
as she seeks to discover the poetic in the prosaic and the eternal in
the temporal. You can connect with her on Twitter