“Catch all the foxes, those little foxes, before they ruin the vineyard of love, for the grapevines are blossoming!” (Song of Solomon 2:15)
I come from a long family line of athletics and coaching. In fact, as far back as you can go, my family has been involved in playing or coaching athletics.
Before my father became a successful insurance agent, he was a successful football coach. From Farmerville, to Winnfield, to West Monroe High School; wherever he went, he won.
He never had an interview—always offers of hiring him on the spot.
His focus wasn’t just having a winning record, but winning with his players. I believe he was successful because he cared so deeply about his players and he believed so strongly in doing “the little things right.”
Even after entering the insurance industry, he continued to get calls and offers from programs from within our state and abroad. When a principal would call to ask my father to come look at their school, Dad would always detour to the bathrooms.
You might ask, “Why would he do that?” He would go see how the bathrooms were kept up. If they didn’t have enough pride to take care of their bathrooms, then they didn’t have enough pride in their school—they didn’t know how to win. He would call the principal and decline their meeting.
I’ve also been coached by some other legendary coaches. One in particular was big on “doing the little things right.” When we would finish football practice, we were expected to have everything picked up — from our equipment, to showers turned off, to stools put up, and so on.
One day I remember coming in from practice and somebody had left out one stool from the previous day. Guess what? The whole team ran until we couldn’t run anymore! Guess what else? Nobody ever left their stool out again.
The point in all of this?
My dad and these other coaches were trying to teach discipline, winning, and thinking “team” concepts. If you couldn’t learn to pick up your stuff after practice, then what if you missed that key block in a tight game? What if you slacked up the last few minutes of the fourth quarter?
We were being taught that there was no “I” in team. We were being taught that for every little thing we missed, forgot, or wanted to do our “own way” would affect the team as a whole. Think this is ridiculous? Go look at their records and also the people they coached. They weren’t only teaching athletic concepts but “life concepts”.
This parallels so much in the Kingdom of God. There are certainly small things we shouldn’t sweat, but far too many times we as Christians miss the “small things.”
We need to realize that we are responsible not only for our lives, but for others as well. We make up a “body.” Our choices and decisions affect the body as a whole. Every decision we make affects our spouses and our children. It’s the small things that go so far.
One of the reasons Chick Fil A is “set apart” from other fast food restaurants is that they excel in doing “the small things” not just right, but GREAT!
When I was in the insurance business, a large part of my market was churches and believers. There was one mega church where every single staff member I called on, not only returned my call, but did so within 24 hours. When I had the opportunity to brag on this church and staff, they told me they are all given 24 hours to return calls.
They obviously were big on “doing the little things right.”
Doing the little things right goes so far!
- Picking up the small piece of litter in the parking lot that others have walked past.
- Picking up the ticket at lunch instead of splitting it.
- Leaving a sweet note for your spouse before you head off to work.
- Returning phone calls and emails promptly, and being thorough.
NOT doing the “small things” can have a reverse affect as well.
- Leaving the TV show on “a bit longer” when we know we should turn it off.
- Allowing a “small piece of anger” in our hearts to turn into unforgiveness.
- Small things not dealt with in our marriage that turn into large things over time.
- Allowing a “small” attitude issue to squeeze by in our children instead of disciplining them. Over time that small attitude issue turns into a big problem.
You see, the small things really can matter in our lives. What are some of the “small things” you could do today that would make a “big difference?”