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Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Ski Wax and Other Little Things

Have you ever noticed how the little things make all the difference?

In cooking, adding too much—or too little—salt makes food either yucky or bland.

Some years ago, I was making meatballs. (Now, I think my meatballs are delicious. My secret ingredient? A small amount of applesauce. I learned this from my mother.) On this day, I didn’t have any apples. I didn’t have any peaches either (which also work well). In the past, I had tasted some delicious beef ribs basted with olive oil, lemon, and some kind of a spice, so I got the “great” idea of putting some lemon juice in the meatballs. Horrible! They were edible but decidedly not my good ole tasty meatballs. Nothing even resembling them! I had made a big batch. (Naturally! When you do something bad, make it really bad.) Our son was still living at home at the time. My husband, son, and I suffered through two whole meals of those awful meatballs, and then generously gave the dog the rest of them, which weren’t many. (The dog loved them, by the way!) All of that to say, a little thing like substituting lemon for applesauce was not a good idea. It spoiled the whole batch.

In running, swimming, jumping, and golf, technique is everything. A small change in how it’s done means fractions of a second off the time—or in golf, making the putt.

In tennis, the way the racket is strung, the tension, and the quality of the racket both make a difference in a player’s performance.

In skiing, the ski waxing is as important as the skiing itself.

In music, the instrument is everything. Compare the sound from an old upright piano and a Steinway grand. Think about the difference in sound between a dime-store guitar and Paco di LucĂ­a’s professional acoustic guitar. Think about the half-size violin your five year old plays compared with a Stradivarius. Or, how about the sound coming from James Galway’s golden flute compared with a beginner’s? There’s no comparison! The sound is determined by the quality of the instrument—and, of course, the ability of the musician.

In poetry and prose, the difference is in the words used—and not used. A small change here, leave out a phrase there, edit this thought to make it clearer, use better punctuation . . . .

In lawn mower mechanics, a tiny adjustment in the carburetor makes it run more smoothly.

God is interested in the little things.
  • He counts our hairs.
  • He knows when a sparrow falls.
  • He clothes the wild lilies.
  • He even made insects pretty!

God cares about you. And He cares about me.

He cares about every aspect of our lives, every little detail.

O LORD, thou hast searched me, and known me.
Thou knowest my downsitting and mine uprising,
thou understandest my thought afar off.
Thou compassest my path and my lying down,
and art acquainted with all my ways.
For there is not a word in my tongue,
but, lo, O LORD, thou knowest it altogether.
Thou hast beset me behind and before,
and laid thine hand upon me.
Such knowledge is too wonderful for me;
it is high, I cannot attain unto it (Psalm 139:1-6).

It’s a blessing that God cares about the little things. The Holy Spirit makes tiny tweaks in our lives, conforming us, step by step to His image. (2 Corinthians 3:18) I’m glad He is patiently working in my life, that He actually cares when I sit down, and when I get up, and is acquainted with all my ways. . . Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; it is high, I cannot attain unto it.

If you would like to share what God is doing in your life, please feel free to leave a comment. 


  1. One time I was making teriyaki, which called for a little cornstarch to be mixed with the sauce at the end to thicken it a little. But instead of cornstarch I accidentally grabbed the baking soda -- and it foamed like a science fair volcano. I thought it would never stop. Then I poured out the sauce (I think I may have even rinsed the meat) and remade the sauce the right way, but it still tasted extremely salty to the baking soda. We were drinking extra fluids all night. Sadly, my husband can't stomach it any more even made the right way. Little things do make a difference!

    And I am glad God corrects us in small increments. It would be disheartening and overwhelming if He showed us everything we need to change all at once.

    1. That's hilarious! I would have been holding my sides with the "volcano" still going off. Thanks for sharing. It made my evening!

      Yes, it's a blessing God does the work in us little by little. He understands our frailties. That is so encouraging. :o)


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