Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Too Big For Me

"'Elves and dragons! I says to him. Cabbages and potatoes are better for me and you. Don't go getting mixed up in the business of your betters, or you'll land in trouble too big for you, I says to him. And I might say it to others,' he added with a look at the stranger and the miller." - The Fellowship of the Ring, p. 47
Sam's dad, the Gaffer, is talking to a bunch of hobbits at The Ivy Bush, a little inn. He's trying to defend the reputation of Bilbo, but also mentions this remark he made to Sam. As it turns out, of course, Sam does get mixed up in an incredibly big, important adventure. It caused him lots of trouble and lots of heartache. Should he have never gotten himself into such a mess? Would it have been better for him to continue minding the cabbages and the potatoes? He was, after all, just a simple gardener. He had never even been on a very small adventure before. And this would be a task on which the entire world would depend. Sam, though, couldn't help but continue to listen to the stories, until finally his meddling resulted in Gandalf choosing him as a traveling companion for Frodo.

"For you see your calling, brethren, that not many wise according to the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called. But God has chosen the foolish things of the world to put to shame the wise, and God has chosen the weak things of the world to put to shame the things which are mighty; and the base things of the world and the things which are despised God has chosen, and the things which are not, to bring to nothing the things that are, that no flesh should glory in His presence. But of Him you are in Christ Jesus, who became for us wisdom from God—and righteousness and sanctification and redemption— that, as it is written, 'He who glories, let him glory in the LORD.'" 1 Corinthians 1:26-31
"Therefore do not be ashamed of the testimony of our Lord, nor of me His prisoner, but share with me in the sufferings for the gospel according to the power of God, who has saved us and called us with a holy calling, not according to our works, but according to His own purpose and grace which was given to us in Christ Jesus before time began . . . " 2 Timothy 1:8,9

God chooses us and gives us tasks which will bring Him glory, not tasks that we can do in our small strengths. Our strength is nothing anyway. What can we do on our own? Sam's greatest attribute was his willingness and continued interest in grander things. So go on, get mixed up in the business of the One that is infinitely better than us. Live on His Word and immerse yourself in His works. Seek Him; seek His ways. Maybe your task will be simple. Maybe your task will change your whole world. Maybe it will bring you lots of trouble.  Don't worry that you are inadequate, just be willing.

I'll tell you, this whole mothering business seems to be too big for me. There's only one of me and four of them! I can list for you a hundred faults that can surely cause this whole adventure to fail miserably (I'll spare you.) But I'd better take my own advice: His Word; His works; Seek Him, His ways; just be willing.
Well, here I am.


  1. thanks, friend, for reminding me of the encouragement in His Word...I am so very grateful that He called me, despite my inadequacies...