The Big and Small Stuff

Within 24 hours of being home from Ecuador, Stephen and I had to leave to drive five hours to attend a memorial service then drive five hours back home.  By the time we got home the other night, I couldn’t speak to anyone because I was so tired.  Yet the stories continued to swirl in my head from my trip.

It’s quiet in my home this morning, so I have had the chance to think about the stories and how 27 women from the US traveled together to Ecuador to visit moms and their babies.  In the most remarkable way, God orchestrated situations that were undeniably for His purpose.  Like the home visit of one woman who told one of the travelers of a situation of pain and abuse she had gone through and how that traveler knew the situation from her own life; a story too personal for me to tell.  And the Ecuadorian mom, who cried on my shoulder telling me how lonely she was, how afraid, and then she prayed to receive Christ as her Savior.  I think about the prayers of the mothers and how they cry out words that I have never spoken. “LORD, please allow me to be able to feed my children tonight.”

When I hear the cries of a mother pleading with God for food, I am tempted to feel like my own prayers are silly.  I am simply praying for God to help us fund-raise for my children for their summer mission’s trip.  I am praying that my daughter Grace, won’t be too nervous playing drums at her school concert.  I am praying that my job with Compassion, and all the trips I am planning work out, and that God continues to orchestrate events that will change lives.  Do these prayers matter?

The other night, as we were driving home, God reminded me of something.  He Loves us in the big stuff and in the little stuff.

I don’t always understand why there are mothers around the world that have to watch their children starve.  Even writing this hurts because I have seen such ugliness and pain and I have wiped their tears.  Yet, in so many situations, I have witnessed the intrusion of God as He orchestrates timely intervention with a person who has a need, and a traveler who can respond.  I have learned a couple of things from witnessing this.

First, God cares about the big stuff.  He wants us to respond to the cries of those who weep.  God blesses us in our obedience of the response, because He loves us that much.  Not only did He go to the cross for us while we were sinners, He continues to give us the opportunity to live in grace everyday.  He wants us to see the big stuff in the world so that we acknowledge our need for His intervention.  He wants us to understand the human depravity so that He can fully display why the cross was a necessary act.  He knew the sins in the world would cause the mothers to weep for their children.  With the big stuff, it’s all about eternity and what happens next.

Second, he cares about the little stuff.  He listens to our whispers of prayers.  Possibly they make him smile and he finds delight in helping us find our contact on the floor of our car, or He enjoys the praise we give Him when our children celebrate the victory of a win.  He desires each of us to trust Him in the day, in the hour and in the moment.  He wants our lives to sing a song of continuous praise so that we can experience His grace and love.

All in all, these moments, big and small, lead to the eternal story of our lives.  It’s not the situation that matters most, but our hearts in the situation that seems to matter most.

He loves us in the details so that we will see the Glory of the Lord and trust Him in all things, with all things.

I have seen the Glory of the Lord.

Pray for the mothers in Ecuador, that tonight they may have food for their children.

5 Comments on “The Big and Small Stuff

  1. Patricia. I have not had a night yet that God has not placed swirling memories in my head of what I saw and experienced. Still completely exhausted. But full of a bigger plan that I am confident God has ready. It doesn’t take much anymore for this ‘non public crier’ to tear up. Thank you for sharing. You have such a rare opportunity. Thank you for bringing us along.

  2. Patricia,
    I have been reading your blog for about a year, but have never commented. Thank you for your serving heart, and all the work you do with Compassion. My Compassion child lives in Ecuador, and I pray every day that she has food and water–things I take for granted every day here in America. Many blessings to you and your sweet family!


  3. Hi Amy,
    Of course you can share! Love you and miss you too!!
    May God be in your words tomorrow in Sunday school!
    Love, Patricia

  4. Patricia,
    Thank you for your words from our Lord. Are you ok with me sharing this with my church class tomorrow? It is so moving. I could just take parts if that’s alright.
    Thanks and Much Love to You!

  5. The perspective of our “American reality” vs. the reality of those around the world is something that is on my mind daily. I have often wondered why the Lord put me here in the Land of Plenty and all I can come up with is that I am supposed to do what I can to advocate for those around the world who go without.

    I love Compassion and everything they do. I put hours a week into praying for the kids, sharing about Compassion, reaching out to sponsors in real life and through my blog because, in my position it really is the least that I could do. I am driven by the knowledge that every single life that is touched is SO precious. (Both sponsored and sponsors….)

    Many thanks to those of you who are able to go to the “front lines” and come back to share with us. My heart yearns to travel and see Compassion at work in the field, but the Lord has yet to open that door for me. Your posts help us to get a glimpse into all of the wonderful things being accomplished out there, in Jesus’ name.

    Praying for you!

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Sandra Jones Counseling

Specializing in Marriage and Family Therapy


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