Mustard Seeds And Mountains: Learning To Think Small
By Adrian Rogers
“And Jesus said unto them…If ye have faith as a grain of mustard seed, ye shall say unto this mountain, Remove hence to yonder place; and it shall remove: and nothing shall be impossible unto you.” – Matthew 17:20
A mustard seed is very small, about like a fleck of ground pepper. A mountain, of course, is huge. What is Jesus saying here? That the least amount of faith is greater than greatest amount of difficulty.
Perhaps what we ought to do is “think small.” A grain of mustard seed faith can move mountains.
The Bible puts a big emphasis on small things. Many small things have big consequences. When an atom is split, you have nuclear fission; the smallest of entities can cause the biggest of explosions. Small things have great import.
If you want to be fruitful, be faithful in small things.
Small Things Fuel Our Fruitfulness
Think of the small things has God used….
Moses and his rod. God used Moses and his rod to lead the children of Israel out of bondage into blessedness. Moses spent the first 40 years of his life learning to be somebody, the next 40 learning to be nobody, and the last 40 learning what God could do with somebody who had learned the first two lessons. Moses’ rod opened up the Red Sea.
David and his sling. God used a boy with a sling to go against Goliath, the original Bigfoot, belching out blasphemies. David was just a kid…Goliath, over nine feet tall. Everybody else thought, “Look how much bigger he is than us!” David thought, “Look how much smaller he is than God!”
Elijah and the still, small voice. Elijah was a little discouraged; God put him in a retreat center up in the mountains. First came a tornado, an earthquake, then a fire—yet God was not in any of these. Afterward came that “still small voice,” the Lord.
The boy’s lunch. The Lord Jesus took five loaves and two fish and fed more than 5,000.
The widow’s offering. Many rich men were present the day Jesus observed a widow and her offering. It was less than an American penny. But He said she gave more than all of them. Why? First, she gave all she had. Second, millions of dollars have been given to the cause of Christ because of her example. For two millennia, hearts have been moved to give because she did a small thing.
Jesus said, “You can’t even give a cup of cold water in My name and lose your reward.” If God used a rod, a slingshot, a penny and a lunch, God can use what you have.
When He delivered mankind, God didn’t send an army. He sent His Son. Jesus was never a general, a governor, or a king. Jesus held little children in His hands. He talked about flowers, seeds, a lost coin, and a boy who’d run away from home. Jesus walked back pathways. He said, “I know the number of hairs on your head.” Jesus was interested in small things.
Small Things Form Our Fruitfulness
“He that is faithful in that which is least is faithful also in…much.” Luke 16:10
Not “if you are faithful in the least, you can be faithful in much,” but “if you are faithful in the least, you are faithful in much.” Why is that? Because everything big is made up of small things!
“Therefore if you have not been faithful in the unrighteous mammon [wealth], who will commit to your trust the true riches?” Luke 16:11
True riches are not what you have in the bank but what you have in your character. If you’re not faithful with money, God cannot trust you with spiritual things. Sometimes people think if we are faithful in spiritual things, then God will trust us with money. It’s just the opposite. God doesn’t call money the big thing. He calls money the small thing. If you can’t handle money, He cannot trust you with true riches. God tests you with the small things.
God tests to see not what you’d do if you had a million dollars, but what you’ll do with the hundred you have. Not what you’d do if some grandiose opportunity came your way, but how you’ll live the rest of this afternoon…the day-by-day, run-of-the-mill small things. Big things are the sum total of small things.
Think of those who’ve been faithful in small things. Before David became Israel’s king, he was a faithful shepherd. Then God gave him a nation to shepherd. Timothy, Paul’s protégé, was faithful in service. Later, he took Paul’s place. Elisha first served as Elijah’s attendant. Then he received a double portion of the Spirit of God.
I’ve known men too big for God to use; I’ve never known one too small for God to use. If you’re big in your own sight, I doubt God can use you.
Whatever you do, whether a widow’s penny or a cup of water, nothing is small if done in obedience and love. And if you have faith like a grain of mustard seed, plant that faith. The least amount of faith is greater than the greatest amount of difficulty.