God is asking us to be faithful in just the little. Faithful means we’re consistent, dependable, reliable, and steadfast. A lot of people say, well it’s just a little thing and does it really matter?
Luke 16:10-13 He that is faithful in that which is least is faithful also in much: and he that is unjust in the least is unjust also in much. If therefore ye have not been faithful in the unrighteous mammon, who will commit to your trust the true riches? And if ye have not been faithful in that which is another man’s, who shall give you that which is your own? No servant can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other…Ye cannot serve God and mammon.
There was a businessman that was going to a meeting. He called ahead and said he would five minutes late. He knew that wasn’t true because he traveled that way many times and it took 15-20 minutes to get there. Saying I’ll be there in five minutes really does matter. Nothing is great or small in God’s view. How is God going to commit other things to us if we don’t have integrity to be faithful, honest, and trustworthy in the little things? True faithfulness doesn’t differentiate between big or little. What is the motive in saying, I’ll be there in five minutes if you know it will be 15-20? God uses these little things to test our integrity.
Leadership isn’t built on big things but on small things in our life. Whosoever is dishonest in small things, will be on dishonest in big things. Every action begins with a thought. We’re in a war and the devil wants us to think small things don’t matter, but it matters to God. He wants us to bear much fruit. We have to stay in the vine to bear fruit. The devil wants to bring in fighting among us to destroy the fruit, to make the fruit shrivel up, or affect the vine some way.
John 15:1-8 I am the true vine, and my Father is the husbandman. Every branch in me that beareth not fruit he taketh away: and every branch that beareth fruit, he purgeth it, that it may bring forth more fruit. Now ye are clean through the word which I have spoken…Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine…I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing. If a man abide not in me, he is cast forth as a branch, and is withered; and men gather them, and cast them into the fire, and they are burned. If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done…Herein is my Father glorified, that ye bear much fruit; so shall ye be my disciples.
The fruits of the Spirit are what God wants to remain in our life: love, joy, peace, patience, longsuffering, and meekness.
John 15:16 Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain: that whatsoever ye shall ask of the Father in my name, he may give it you.
A little fox does little things that cause lots of damage. He breaks the stems, digs around the roots, eats grapes, and pulls down vines. The devil makes foxes look attractive so he can tear us down and pull us away from being faithful to God. Our warfare during the pandemic is that the enemy is trying to get slothfulness and laziness to work in us as little foxes.
Song of Solomon 2:15 Take us the foxes, the little foxes, that spoil the vines: for our vines have tender grapes.
When Sampson wanted a wife, his parents tried to get him to find an Israelite but he went to the Philistine camp. He found a woman he insisted on marrying. His father visited and they had a big feast. Sampson told a riddle and said he’d give a prize if anyone gave the answer to riddle. Every day his wife begged him for the answer. The seventh day she cried and said he didn’t love her or he’d tell her. So he told her and she immediately told his friend. Sampson was so angry he left. His wife’s father gave her to a friend. Sampson was very angry when he returned and found out. Josephus said he hired 20-25 men to get 300 foxes. Sampson retaliated to get even with his wife and her father but it affected all the people when the fire destroyed their corn, vineyards, and olives. Revenge is always out of proportion to the original offense. Josephus said he killed 1000 men. If you get a bitter unforgiving spirit, enemy will work like a little fox for us to have an attitude and not forgive – a little grudge or bitterness. You think it won’t hurt but it does because it grows.
Judges 15:3-8 And Samson said…Now shall I be more blameless than the Philistines, though I do them a displeasure. And Samson went and caught three hundred foxes, and took firebrands, and turned tail to tail, and put a firebrand in the midst between two tails. And when he had set the brands on fire, he let them go into the standing corn of the Philistines, and burnt up both the shocks, and also the standing corn, with the vineyards and olives…Philistines said, Who hath done this? And they answered, Samson…because he had taken his wife, and given her to his companion. And the Philistines came up, and burnt her and her father with fire. And Samson said…Though ye have done this, yet will I be avenged of you, and after that I will cease. And he smote them hip and thigh with a great slaughter…
God wants us to have total forgiveness toward anyone that has hurt us. We will try to retaliate some time if we’re keeping maliciousness, bitterness, or unforgiveness. God wants us to be faithful in little things of loving our enemies.
Matthew 5:38-39 Ye have heard that it hath been said, An eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth: But I say unto you, That ye resist not evil: but whosoever shall smite thee on thy right cheek, turn to him the other also.
A lot of people retaliate through their mouth. There’s life and death in the tongue – in what people say (Proverbs 18:21). People think it doesn’t really matter, but it does because God hears every word we say. God knows if it’s in retaliation. A fool utters whatever comes to mind. A motive of revenge is in your heart if you put someone down and you’re elevated.
Matthew 5:42-45 Give to him that asketh thee, and from him that would borrow of thee turn not thou away. Ye have heard…Thou shalt love thy neighbour, and hate thine enemy. But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you; That ye may be the children of your Father…in heaven: for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good…
God has the grace to help us, regardless of what people say or do. We can keep a sweet spirit and not retaliate or have a sharp, sarcastic tongue to put them down. We can be what God wants us to be. God is the one that avenges us. God wants to make sure there’s complete love in our heart so we love our enemies and anyone that despitefully uses us. Our enemies would see we’re going to be faithful to God regardless of the situation.
Romans 12:17-21 Recompense to no man evil for evil. Provide things honest in the sight of all men. If it be possible, as much as lieth in you, live peaceably with all men. Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but rather give place unto wrath: for it is written, Vengeance is mine; I will repay…Therefore if thine enemy hunger, feed him; if he thirst, give him drink: for in so doing thou shalt heap coals of fire on his head. Be not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good.
The enemy wants us to lose our first love with Christ so our love grows cold. God wants us to be faithful and diligent, to be sure our love affair with Christ is like when we repented and got saved, and then that it grows – not diminishes.
Revelations 2:4 Nevertheless I have somewhat against thee, because thou hast left thy first love.
The woman with the alabaster box had nothing but a desire to show love and affection for what Christ had done. The Pharisee thought within himself, if Jesus was really a prophet he wouldn’t let the heathen sinner woman touch him.
Luke 7:36-39 And one of the Pharisees desired him that he would eat with him. And he went…and sat down to meat. And, behold, a woman…which was a sinner…brought an alabaster box of ointment, And stood at his feet behind him weeping, and began to wash his feet with tears, and did wipe them with the hairs of her head, and kissed his feet, and anointed them with the ointment. Now when the Pharisee…saw it, he spake within himself, saying, This man, if he were a prophet, would have known who and what manner of woman this is that toucheth him: for she is a sinner.
Jesus told the difference between two debtors – one owed 500 pence, one owed 50. Jesus asked Simon who loved the most. He answered the one that owed most would love the most. The custom of that day if you invited someone to your house was to offer a basin of water to wash their feet and to anoint their head with a drop of oil. Simon didn’t do that for Jesus. If we really love God and what he’s done for us, God doesn’t want the little fox of losing our first love to make our love dull. We’ll get lazy and begin procrastinating in our Bible study, prayer, or service times. He wants us to love him with all our heart, soul, mind, and strength. God knows if we allow the cares of this life, deceitfulness of riches, and other things to rob us so our fruit won’t be long-lasting. God doesn’t look at big sinners and little sinners. It doesn’t matter whether we have one or ten sins, we’re a sinner and lost in the eyes of God. Jesus paid the same price for all.
Luke 7:44-48 And he turned to the woman, and said unto Simon, Seest thou this woman? I entered into thine house, thou gavest me no water for my feet: but she hath washed my feet with tears, and wiped them with the hairs of her head. Thou gavest me no kiss: but this woman since the time I came in hath not ceased to kiss my feet. My head with oil thou didst not anoint: but this woman hath anointed my feet with ointment. Wherefore…Her sins, which are many, are forgiven; for she loved much: but to whom little is forgiven, the same loveth little…said unto her, Thy sins are forgiven.
The Pharisee was very religious minded but despised others and sinners. God wants us to love everyone. He prayed with himself. A lot of people are praying with themselves but they’re just religious minded if there’s sin in their life, if they’re proud and lifted up. God won’t hear their prayer. He hears those who are humble and want to do what God wants them to do. Don’t let the little foxes rob you of your peace, joy, and fruits of the Spirit. Ask God to help you.
Luke 18:9-14 And he spake…unto certain which trusted in themselves that they were righteous, and despised others: Two men went up into the temple to pray; the one a Pharisee, and the other a publican. The Pharisee…prayed thus with himself, God, I thank thee, that I am not as other men are, extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even as this publican. I fast twice in the week, I give tithes of all that I possess. And the publican, standing afar off, would not lift up…his eyes unto heaven, but smote upon his breast, saying, God be merciful to me a sinner. I tell you, this man went down to his house justified…for every one that exalteth himself shall be abased; and he that humbleth himself shall be exalted.
King Saul got impatient and wouldn’t wait for Samuel as he was told. He didn’t do what he was supposed to because of impatience and God rejected him for not obeying. Don’t let impatience get hold of us at this time of pandemic. God knows how long this is going to be. We have to be take it one day at a time and ask God to help us watch out for any foxes the enemy would bring against us, to stay sweet in our soul, stay diligent, and be faithful in little things.