Little Things…

“. . . disgusting things?”


“Were they ashamed because they did these disgusting things? No, they were not at all ashamed; they don’t even
know how to blush.” ( Jeremiah 6:15)

I’ll bet that when you look at this photo one of the first words that comes to your mind is the feeling I experienced when I saw this mess – “disgusting.”  I was stopped at a busy intersection as the light was changing.  I happened to look at about ten feet of the curb beside me and this was what I saw.  Apparently it’s a popular time while stopped at the light for drivers to roll down their windows and toss out their cigarette butts.  You’ve seen it, they don’t even blush (as Jeremiah says), they just toss the butt and drive on, like their action has little or no impact on the rest of us (or they just don’t care if it does).  According to the dictionary for something to be “disgusting” means that it arouses, “revulsion or strong indignation.”  I guess it might seem like a pretty strong reaction to a seemingly small or insignificant act of throwing out a cigarette butt – but look at the cumulative impact!

When we consider Lent and sin I think we tend first to focus on the big things we’ve done or left undone that have created so much hurt.  This week I’m inclined to look at the little things that add up.  When I look at the cigarette butts I can’t help but feel disgusted.  However, the disgust is not an invitation to judge, but rather a reminder to examine my own sin – the little things I might do or leave undone that can add up to major hurt.  Some of our hurtful or negligent acts become so habituated that they fail to make us notice, let alone “blush.”  That’s why we’re surprised when someone brings them to our attention and seems to making such a “big deal” about them. 

I invite you during this week of Lent to look with me at the little things that cause so much hurt.  I pray that God will give me the courage to look, the grace to ask forgiveness, and the strength to change.  How about you?

Blessings and Peace,
Pastor, Cross Lanes United Methodist Church
Cross Lanes, WV

PS: My new book, Wednesday Wonderings: Spiritual Journaling Through a Lens,is now available from the publisher’s website ( for $22.40), ( for $28.00), and from me if you’re close by (for $20).  The Kindle version is still on the way.

Help save lives! For more information on my book, “A Relentless Hope: Surviving the Storm of Teen Depression,” visit

Check out my video, “Teens Surviving the Storm”

~ by revgenelson on February 20, 2013.

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