This quotation by Desmond Tutu put me in mind of similar sayings especially Mother Teresa of Calcutta. She used to insist that she and her sisters didn’t do great things but little things with a great love.
St David on his death bed drew his monks around him and his final words were:
“Brothers and sisters, be joyful Keep the faith and do the little things that you saw and heard from me.” The little things which David taught included prayer, being present for the breaking of bread at the Eucharist; reading scripture; speaking only when necessary and helping the poor. He believed also that we should have a deep respect for others; that we should always be lowly, possessing a humility which never expresses itself arrogantly and which steers us away from pride. He also set great store on hospitality – always being ‘at home’ for others and for God – having time for both.
Probably, though, my favourite story about doing the little things we can is about a little sparrow.
A little sparrow laid on his back with his legs in the air. Another sparrow came past and asked the sparrow in his back what he was doing. He replied that he had heard that the sky was going to fall in and thought that he should try and help hold it up.
The other sparrow laughed and said, “You’re only a little sparrow with little legs. How can you hold up the whole sky?
The sparrow laid on the floor with his legs in the air, turned his head and said:
“I know, but one does what one can.”
My friend and fellow blogger Daryl Madden whose bloggings I follow, wrote a poem a couple of weeks ago which he has given me permission to re-blog here. Daryl is a follower of Jesus and a lover of God. He lives in America and his daily poems often give me inspiration.
Here’s his poem, Little Things –
Little gifts of kindness
Bring light to this world
Little acts of love
Through the trinity
Draw the world as One
Little prayers of faith
Turns the worlds direction
Oh, so gradually
All these little moments
One day we will see
In another world
Flow to eternity
The little things in life
The world sees as small
Turns out in the end
Are the greatest, of all