I have a beautiful oak tree in my front yard, and its wide-spreading limbs seem to span forever. As I look at that tree, it's hard for me to believe that it started from an acorn. All I see is big and majestic, but it had to start as a small seed. That's how God works. He takes the small, and He goes big.
When the Israelites were going to possess the Promised Land, God said, "Little by little I will drive your enemies out before you, until you have increased enough to take possession of the land" (Exodus 23:30). God started small, slowly decreasing the enemies because He wanted His people to go big. He wanted them to grow their own capacity to be able to handle what He was going to give them in the future. He didn't want the land to overtake them. He wanted them to overtake the land. God was increasing them incrementally throughout their journey.
God wants to increase us, but oftentimes we overlook the small things because we want to go big. We may even think that we don't have to deal with something small because it's not going to make that much difference anyway. It's easy to think that how we're treating our spouse or all the complaining we do about our job doesn't really matter. Perhaps there's a lack of integrity, leaving the office early, thinking the boss isn't looking. And on top of that, too often we think we don't have the right education or the finances or the right people connections to achieve our dreams.
All of that is small stuff, but God says what we believe and our attitudes are very important. The small things matter to Him, and if we don't learn to handle the small, we'll never go big. Perhaps you need to forgive someone or start being on time at work. That may seem small, but it's only "little by little" that you can go big. You want a great marriage. You want that promotion. You have to do what's right in the small things.
We recently went to the funeral service of the great evangelist Billy Graham and celebrated the life of a man who touched millions for God. We see his big life, but we don't see the small things he dealt with every day for over ninety years—the choices, the adjustments, the things he said no to, the things he did when he didn't know if it would make a difference. We see the big but not the small.
Remember, a majestic oak tree starts with a small seed.