Extremely Small Fidelities

You never know what God’s going to use. You can assume he’s going to use everything.

A long while ago, I was out watching one of my son’s soccer games. I was standing next to a guy I’d known for a few years. I’ll call him Scott. We were talking about this or that the way soccer parents do. And then Scott asked me what I was doing that afternoon. I was semi-embarrassed to admit that I planned to go to Confession, but I just rattled it off as one of my things on the agenda for the day.

“Huh, no kidding. Man, I haven’t been to Confession since I was a kid.”

“Yeah. I go pretty regularly. Good for the soul. Cheaper than therapy.”

The conversation about confession was a little longer than that, but not much. We turned to talking about washing cars or mowing lawns or something.

You can only imagine my surprise when, shortly after the following Easter, Scott saw me and told me the news.

“Hey, remember last year on the soccer field when we were talking? Well, I started thinking about it and I talked to my wife and told her that I was going to go and try Confession. And one thing led to another, and soon we were all going to Mass. And now Jane and the kids got baptized at the Easter Vigil and the whole family is Catholic and we have you to thank for that.”

Except, of course, they didn’t, at all. It was God’s work, the God who uses small things. The small thing in which I was faithful– just a tiny, brief comment, really– was used by God to grow a great thing.

Remember that little story any time you think you know better than God does, and remember it, too, when you find yourself unable to see what God’s doing with your small fidelities.


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