Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Consistency

“One who is faithful in a very little is also faithful in much, and one who is dishonest in a very little is also dishonest in much"

This is a passage of interest for me, as I always regarded the "very little" as insignificant. Who has time to put attention into every little detail, like keeping your room clean. when you are trying to change the world?

But what this passage suggest is quite different. It seems almost paradoxical and counterintuitive.

It suggest that if we remain faithful, consistent, in the very little, then we would, as a consequence, also be faithful in much.

I believe the small things are the training for the big thing. If you are trying to master a skill, it requires a lot of mundane, boring and seemingly trivial tasks, and in the context of the great goal it may seem "very little".

Learning to play the guitar was very frustrating at times. The tedious little exercises that were repeated almost ad infinitum, required to train both mind and fingers, could get really boring.

But over the years, as I remained faithful in these little exercises, I was able to finally be comfortable with the guitar.

I have a big problem with consistency. I know that being faithful to the little is very important for my growth and maturing, and after many tries and promising attempts, I usually steer off and find myself in the same place where I started.

Sometimes something "magical happens", as some weird screws are suddenly tightened in my mind towards a goal and I am able to focus, remain faithful and consistent, build habits, and get very close to the goal, but then something disrupts my routine and all of that might as well be counted as naught, because I suddenly find myself without the habits, and many times worse than when I started.

This can be very frustrating, as getting back into the groove is difficult, and it feels that I'm starting from zero once again.

But slowly, as time goes by, and after many new beginnings, I can see some progress. It's not as fast as I want to, but after this dance of two steps forward and one back, I feel that I'm finally advancing.

Consistency just takes practice, almost like a skill you have to work on. It takes a lot of seemingly trivial, tedious and repetitive boring work, and yet it's what better prepares us for the big things, like maturity.

Like keeping your room clean.

Like ministry.

Like intimacy with God.

Photo Credit: Mary_on_flickr.

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