“For who hath despised the day of small things?” (Zachariah 4:10)
In 587 B.C., Jerusalem was destroyed by Nebuchadnezzar, King of Babylon. The magnificent temple that Solomon built was among the ruins. Soon after the destruction, the Jews from the tribe of Judah were exiled to Babylon. Their stay would last approximately fifty years.
In 538 B.C., Cyrus, the King of Babylon, allowed the Jews to return to Jerusalem. However, the returning Jews were few in number, and their resources were small. Twenty years would pass before the building of the second temple. Finally, under the leadership of Jeshua, the High Priest and Zerubbabel, the governor, the building of the second temple began. There were many difficulties, but God promised that the temple would be finished, “Not by might, nor by power, but by My Spirit.” (Zachariah 4:6) As the foundation was laid, the old men cried and the young men shouted for joy.
The temple was completed in 515 B.C. After seventy years, the Jews could once again worship God in their temple. It was during this difficult time of temple rebuilding, that God asked the question: “For who has despised the day of small things?” (Zachariah 4:10) God is not hindered during difficult times because He is the God of all resources.
Does this not encourage our hearts in this time of uncertainty! Small things become great things when given to God. Today, we find ourselves somewhat in a day of small things. Our choices have become smaller. If severe suffering comes, what should be our reaction? We serve a God who has promised: “I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.” (Hebrews 13:5)
There are many examples of how God used small things to accomplish His purpose. For example, Christ used a lad’s lunch consisting of five barley loaves and two small fish to feed at least 5,000 people. (John 6:9) May we in these days think of the importance of small acts of service to others: a card, a phone call, an email, a smile, a meal, a prayer, an expression of gratitude. We serve a God today who promised that by His Spirit He would accomplish great things in “the day of small things.”
“Sometimes when I consider what tremendous consequences come from little things – a chance word, a tap on the shoulder, or a penny dropped on a news stand – I am tempted to think…there are no little things.” Bruce Barton
When a small thing provides a great blessing, it is no longer a small thing.