WISDOM FOR LIVING DAILY DEVOTIONAL
JUNE 21 2022
TOPIC: THANK GOD EVEN FOR THE LITTLE THINGS YOU HAVE
BY T.O. BANSO
“There is a lad here who has five barley loaves and two small fish, but what are they among so many?” (John 6:9 New King James Version).
Have you done something for somebody before or given him something but he refused to thank you because it was little or small? He received, collected, or accepted it but didn’t express his gratitude. Probably, he felt you should have done more than that although that might be all you could do or offer.
Failing to show gratitude because a gift or favour is small is not a good attitude. Most times, people who have an entitlement mentality do this. They feel that others owe them something. Therefore, they do not appreciate whatever they do whether big or small. The Bible teaches us to show gratitude to God and fellow human beings. The size or amount should not determine whether you express appreciation or not. This is important if you’re going to get along with people. Ingratitude is one of the destroyers of relationships.
More importantly, in your relationship with God, you must learn to thank Him for everything, including what human beings may consider as small or little. If you can thank God for what may be considered as little or small, you will position yourself for something more or greater. Thank God for everything; He doesn’t owe you anything!
In John 6, Jesus had a great multitude that He wanted to feed. Although He knew what He would do, He tested Philip by asking him where they could buy bread so that the multitude might eat. Philip replied that two hundred denarii worth of bread was not enough for each person to have only a little piece. Then, one of the disciples of Jesus, Andrew, Simon Peter’s brother, told Jesus, “There is a lad here who has five barley loaves and two small fish, but what are they among so many?” (John 6:9 New King James Version).
In other words, Andrew said the boy’s food was too small in comparison to the multitude to be fed. That meant the food would serve no purpose. It was insignificant; it wouldn’t meet the need at hand. The New Living Translation renders John 6:9 thus: “There’s a young boy here with five barley loaves and two fish. But what good is that with this huge crowd?”
But don’t forget that Jesus already knew what He would do. Therefore, He didn’t despise the boy’s small food that Andrew talked about. He told His disciples to make the people sit down. “And Jesus took the loaves, and when He had given thanks He distributed them to the disciples, and the disciples to those sitting down; and likewise of the fish, as much as they wanted” (verse 11 New King James Version).
Please take note that Jesus gave thanks for the loaves of bread and distributed the boy’s little food to those sitting down. He did the same thing with the fish, giving the people as much as they wanted. Jesus gave thanks; He didn’t grumble. He gave thanks; He didn’t complain. Something supernatural happened – the boy’s little food was multiplied.
The multitude ate until they were filled. Then, Jesus told His disciples to gather the fragments that remained so that nothing would be lost. This was done. They gathered twelve baskets of the fragments of the five barley loaves. Five thousand men were fed that day from the boy’s little food. If that wasn’t a miracle, what is it? Those who saw the miracle said truly Jesus the Prophet who was to come into the world. This supernatural feeding of 5,000 men is also recorded in Matthew 14:13-21, Mark 6:35-44, and Luke 9:10-17 – the only miracle of Jesus recorded in all the Gospels.
My focus in this story is Jesus’ thanksgiving even when the boy’s food was little in comparison to the multitude He wanted to feed. Do you thank God for the little money available to you? Do you thank Him for the little help or assistance you receive from people? Or do you complain that it’s not up to what you want?
On another occasion, Jesus wanted to feed the multitude. They were 4,000 people and His disciples could only find seven loaves of bread and fish. This was little compared to the number of thee people to be fed. Nevertheless, Jesus was not discouraged. Neither did He complain. Mark 8:6-7 says, “So He commanded the multitude to sit down on the ground. And He took the seven loaves and gave thanks, broke them and gave them to His disciples to set before them; and they set them before the multitude. They also had a few small fish; and having blessed them, He said to set them also before them” (New King James Version).
Again, take note that Jesus gave thanks before His disciples gave the bread and the fish to the people to eat. They ate and were filled. Thereafter, seven large baskets of leftover fragments were gathered. On these two occasions, the fragments gathered were more than the original food!
Jesus thanked God for the little food that was available on the two occasions and miracles happened. Give thanks always to God even for the little things. Little is better than nothing! Little is much with God. Nothing is too difficult for God to do. In everything give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you (1 Thessalonians 5:18).
Thank God even for the little things you have. The little things may be a test for you. God may be watching your attitude to see whether or not you will thank Him for that little provision, little promotion, little recovery, and so on. Thank Him for the little things you have. Some don’t have what you have. If you’re faithful in little, God will make you master of much. If you are faithful over a few things, you will be made a ruler over many things (Matthew 25:21).
Thank God even for the little things you have. God told the Israelites that little by little He would drive them out the Hivites, the Canaanites, and the Hittites from before them until the Israelites had increased and inherited the land (Exodus 23:30). Deuteronomy 7:22 says a similar thing. God said the Israelites would not be able to destroy these nations at once, lest the beasts of the field became too numerous for the Israelites.
Little by little! Thank God for little progress, little improvement, little success, or little profit. Proverbs 13:11 says, “Dishonest money dwindles away, but whoever gathers money little by little makes it grow” (New International Version). Did you see again the phrase “little by little”? Thank God for the little things you have. Don’t despise as little whatever God does for you. Do you know what the absence of the little thing could cause? Can you do it in your power? “Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and comes down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow of turning” (James 1:17 New King James Version). Thank God for everything He has done or does for you. Thank God even for the little things you have.
If you are not born again, you need to give your life to Jesus now. I urge you to take the following steps: *Admit that you are a sinner and you cannot save yourself and repent of your sins. *Confess Jesus as your Lord and Saviour. *Renounce your past way of life – your relationship with the devil and his works. *Invite Jesus into your life. *As a mark of seriousness to mature in the faith, start attending a Bible-believing and Bible-teaching church. There they will teach you how to grow in the Kingdom of God.
Kindly say this prayer now: O Lord God, I come unto You today. I know I am a sinner and I cannot save myself. I believe that Jesus is the Son of God who died on the cross to save me and God raised Him on the third day. I repent of my sins and confess Jesus as my Lord and Saviour. I surrender my life to Jesus now and invite Him into my heart. By this prayer, I know I am saved. Thank You, Jesus, for saving me and making me a child of God.
I believe you have said this prayer from your heart. Congratulations! You will need to join a Bible-believing and Bible-teaching church in your area where they will teach you how to live your new life in Christ Jesus. I pray that you flourish like a palm tree and grow like a cedar of Lebanon. May you grow into Christ in all things and become all God wants you to be. I will be glad to hear from you. The Lord be with you.
PRAYER POINTS: Father, forgive me for despising as little what You have done for me or given me. I will no longer despise whatever you do for me or enable me to achieve. Holy Spirit, help me to thank God always for everything He does for me or gives me, including what I may consider as little. I pray that, in everything, all the children of God will be full of gratitude to Him even for the little things.
(For over 800 in-depth and powerful messages by T. O. Banso, visit www.cedarministry.org).
T. O. Banso is the President of Cedar Ministry International, Abuja, Nigeria.
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