I turn to the twelve-year-old son towering close to my eye level and chide him, “Give your guitar practicing your all,” I say. “How can I?” he asks. “The knobs are missing from my amp.” I stare hard. Your new amp? We had picked up the newly restored vintage amp just last week for the purpose of inspired practice time. The aim is to eventually hear music from the constant strumming activity of this boy . . . perhaps even a whole song.
Those knobs. Such little pieces, but without them the guitar amp is rendered nearly ineffective. I lean down to inspect. Not one, but two knobs have been stripped away. Just this week, as the one-year-old takes command of his walking skills in a whole new way, he finds the smallest things and stows them away. Now I lean in lower . . . down on my hands and knees looking under cushions and across the floor for those small, dark pieces. As I crawl in step with my one-year-old, I am reminded of all the times this week that I have been on my hands and knees looking after “small” things.
How many times my activities felt like an interruption, or just simply so “small” . . . so insignificant?
There were little bits of food thrown from the high chair that needed cleaning up; there was the singular game piece fallen behind the shelf that the eight-year-old needed. I made silly, little conversation with my teen as the day faded. I took moments to focus on reviewing rudimentary math problems. I had wept on the floor, letting small and silent tears fall for my oldest child. A small smile spread warm over the candle light of my mother’s seventy-fourth birthday cake.
I have so many daily occasions to attend to the seemingly insignificant . . . but does the smallness sometimes mask the meaning within this call? The opportunity to let love be amplified . . . through me? Do the small parts of my day appear unimportant as I attempt to accomplish the more sizable goals of the distant kind?
In a season, in a world, where everyone is focused on the considerable change, the substantial shift and the big measure of progress, I think of God’s calling upon my life as a mother. How the little things are the very things of every day motherhood that God, in his infinite wisdom, uses as instrumental to amplify love . . . that you and I might pour our hearts fully into the strumming of our hands, and offer a song to the closest dears in our homes, causing reverberations of love across a hurting world.