The Significance of ‘Small Beginnings’
From the lowly acorn grows the mighty Oak Tree; humble beginnings perhaps, yet great things often spring from small beginnings. But what of small beginnings, we must never despise them. From small beginnings forest fires are ignited and great movements are born. From humble beginnings great leaders and prophets have arisen to make their mark on their day. Small beginnings are an important part of life’s growth and development. Your smallness and my smallness today have a vital and integral part to play in today’s Church and that of tomorrow’s. We should never be ashamed of what we have started out with in our Christian walk, however insignificant it may seem; for in matters of faith, vast potential for growth lies within us all.
God has a purpose in all things, but He also has a process. The vision that God gave to Habakkuk was for an appointed time. God is a God of order. Everything is done by appointment; specific appointments have already been set up on our journey and have a scheduled time for bringing to pass two things – His purposes and His promises. Small beginnings have their part to play in this so don’t let us devalue them. Small things matter. “Do not despise these small beginnings, for the Lord rejoices to see the work begin’” (Zechariah 4:10).
Abraham, having received a word from the Lord, set out on his ‘Journey of Faith’ and the scriptures tell us that God went with him. The implantation of ‘seed faith’ within the heart of Abraham; the subsequent reception of its content and the working out of its purposes, was to lead him to great things. Small beginnings they may have been, but God had greater things in store for Abraham, as the exercise of his seed faith became pivotal to all he was about to accomplish. Abraham, because of his obedience to the word of the Lord, was destined to become the father of faith. His offspring were to be more in number than the sands of the sea shore – a promise he was never to see fulfilled personally. It was indeed a small beginning – but Abraham had begun well.
The date was about 30 AD, the place Galilee. Two men were busy mending their nets and it was just the beginning of another ordinary day in the lives of two ordinary people. But a new dawn was about to begin in the hearts and lives of these two men, for Jesus was soon to pass by, and before the sun had dipped down below the Galilee hills, a new day was to break – a spiritual one. A day of small beginnings had started in their lives; they had come face to face with Jesus, heeded His call, and from that day everything was to change. Little did they realise that ‘seed faith’ was soon to be planted within their very beings. Its conception was to be in good ground and its development fruitful. James and John, from humble beginnings, were to become two of the greatest Apostles.
God is constantly at work in our lives, encouraging us to take that first step; a new step of faith; perhaps the need for a larger vision; a new ministry perhaps. Who knows what new horizons those few faltering steps will open up – who can tell what they will achieve? Let’s all of be reminded that great things often spring from ‘Small Beginnings’ – Let’s start believing shall we.
Jack has been a faithful member of the Free Methodist Church for 34 years, spending many of those years in leadership. He lives in Lancashire, UK, and has recently celebrated 60 years as being a Christian! Find our more about Jack and the story behind Jack’s corner: Treasures of the Word here.