“God doesn’t need my help in this world any more than you or I need our toddlers to help us make the bed, or mix up the brownies or fold the laundry. In fact, asking our children to help often means the job will take longer and require us to tidy things up when the tiny fingers have moved on to digging in the dirt and building LEGO castles. But we delight in them and we desire to teach them, so we invite them along for the ride. God delights in us, and he has asked us to be his hands and feet here in the world. He doesn’t need us, but he has chosen to work out his will through us.” From Every Little Thing by Deidra Riggs
Her name is Mary. She’s the receptionist at my dentist’s office. She does all the typical receptiony kinds of things like answer the phone, make appointments, calls on folks when it’s their turn to go back for dental procedures, and even makes sure the magazines in the waiting room are current (including removing the issues that have missing pages…that some people tear out and leave the rest of us hanging…anyway, I digress). I learned a couple of months ago that Mary also goes above and beyond her typical duties when the need arises.
I don’t know about you, but going to the dentist stresses. me. out. It doesn’t really matter what procedure I’m being seen for, I can feel the fear creeping up on me the moment I walk through the front door. So when I needed to make an emergency appointment over the summer, my anxiety was at an all-time high. And Mary sensed it immediately.
As I was checking in, she looked straight into my eyes and said cheerily, “You know, if you ever need a hug, we give those away free. Or, I’d be happy to pray with you.” I smiled wanly at her while handing her the clipboard as I gave a polite, “Thank you. I’ll keep that in mind.”. I don’t usually go around hugging strangers – or letting them hug me — because boundaries.
When I returned from the dentist chair to pay my bill, the tension was getting the best of me. So much so, that I asked, “Do you have a time limit on those hugs?” No sooner had it come out of my mouth than Mary stood up and met me at the door with her arms wide open. Her countenance was one of empathy and she smiled as she wrapped her arms tightly around my shoulders and held me for a long moment. I could feel myself relax into her arms and a calm came over me as I inhaled deeply. “It’s going to be alright,” she said sweetly.
Mary’s simple act of kindness displayed the love of Jesus for me. At that very moment, I knew that Jesus saw me, scared and worried, but instead of telling me to “put on my big-girl panties” (as I sometimes imagine him saying), he reached out through Mary and gave me a hug.
I’ve discussed this very idea of reaching out and doing the “little things” here recently. Making a difference in someone’s life isn’t always manifested through a “big” thing, (like the simple thing I did at the grocery store recently) and at the time, whatever you’ve done may even seem insignificant or inconsequential…to you. But remember, God views us very differently than we view ourselves.
In her brand new book, Every Little Thing, my friend Deidra puts it this way, “We look around at our world today and wonder, Who will be our Dr. King or Gandhi, or Mother Teresa, or Nelson Mandela? And we forget that God is always doing something new. God isn’t’ looking for the next King or Gandhi or Mother Teresa or Nelson Mandela. God is extending a hand in your direction, hoping you’ll join him…Chances are good that you are the perfect person for the job.”
I started reading Deidra’s book and couldn’t put it down (here’s what others are saying about this gem.) Her invitation to join God in “every little thing” drew me in and kept me turning each page in anticipation. What if we really believed we could make a difference, right where we are? What if God can use us with the gifts and talents and knowledge and abilities and inabilities we have, right now? Today? I am so excited about this book and believe that it applies beautifully to everyone, that I’m giving away (through a drawing) 3 copies of Every Little Thing! The more you participate, the more likely you are to win a copy.
Leave a comment letting me know you’d like a copy of Deidra Riggs’ book, Every Little Thing
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The winners will be contacted through email.