The Remarkable Power of Small

“But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty.” I Cor. 1:27

It was in December, 1972 at the American Association for the Advancement of Science in Washington, D. C. that a gentleman by the name of Lorenz described the “Butterfly Effect.” In 1963, he had presented a paper to the New York Academy of Sciences in which he quoted a meteorologist, who, speaking concerning the chaos theory, said that if the chaos theory were true, a single flap of a single seagull’s wings would be enough to change the course of all future weather systems on the earth.

Lorenze had continued this study and by the time of the 1972 meeting, he had examined and refined the idea and addressed the Washington D. C. session, entitling his presentation: “Predictability: Does the Flap of a Butterfly’s Wings in Brazil set off a Tornado in Texas?” The thrust of his research lent credence to the thesis that a small system, as seemingly inconsequential as the beat of a butterfly wing, could create a large and distant system such as a tornado in Texas.

Startling to me are such concepts as those presented here, and having no scientific training I have little basis for offering an opinion, except that the wide-spread acceptance of this theory would have me think the principle must be accurate. In the realm of the Spirit, I have greater understanding, for God has made it exceedingly clear that He uses that of small consideration to accomplish His will and His work.

Thinking about this truth energizes and enlivens me, for laid beside real tasks and challenges, my sphere of influence, my talent and my abilities are of such smallness and insignificance, that if not for this spiritual understanding frustration and an overwhelming sense of impossibility could grasp me.

But no! God’s Word speaks differently.

And yes! The truth of the idea that the flutter of a butterfly’s wing contributes to the formation of a tornado leads us to the spiritual law that speaks to the truth of God’s great Plan and Mission being accomplished by the small, the lesser, the simple, the humble.

Think about this today. Envision yourself and your efforts as they cause great storms in the spirit world. Immerse yourself in such vision…for it is true. We may never know what we caused, we may never hear of the lives we have changed…for think about it…does the butterfly have any comprehension of the world in which he operates? No, but he continues his flit, the flutter of his wing, and along the way, he may create a storm.

God uses the tiny, the undiscovered, the unthinkable. Consider his prophet, Amos.

“Then answered Amos, and said to Amaziah, I was no prophet, neither was I a prophet’s son; but I was an herdman, and a gatherer of sycomore fruit: and the Lord took me as I followed the flock, and the Lord said unto me, Go, prophesy unto my people Israel.” Amos 7:14-15

Can you see this? A simple farm worker, one who herded sheep or other animals, and who picked figs. Amos, the fig-picker, the herdsman, the commoner–God reached down, laid a cloak of anointing on his chosen one, and spoke. Prophesy, Amos. Speak to my people. An astonishing move.

And so as we walk our simple paths today, as we lay a caring hand on the shoulder of a neighbor, or scribble down our Sunday school notes, or sit before the piano preparing an offering for Wednesday night’s Bible study, let us recall who we are, how small, how little, how pitiful…but such ones are those whom God wants, and through whom great spiritual victories are accomplished.

_________________________________________________________________________ My other blog is here.



About Shirley Buxton

Still full of life and ready to be on the move, Shirley at 78 years old feels blessed to have lots of energy and to be full of optimism. She has been married to Jerry for 60 years. They have 4 children, 12 grandchildren and 11 great-grandchildren...all beautiful and highly intelligent--of course. :)
This entry was posted in Amos, Animals, Bible, Christian Boldness, Christianity, Church, Devotionals, Humility, I Corinthians, Judges, religion, Science, Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to The Remarkable Power of Small

  1. Lou (Linda) says:

    GREAT post, Shirley. A wonderful reminder to be faithful in the small things and not wait and sit on our hands until God wants us to do something “big”, for it is God who turns the flutter of a butterfly’s wings into a tornado, it is God who turns the widow’s mite into a fortune, and it is God who uses fishermen, housewives, and children to do his biggest works….

    Love this response, Linda. It is so true that many people fail to do anything, because they’re waiting for the big opportunity to come along.

    Be blessed, always.

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