Small things

Daily Reading for February 3 • Anskar, Archbishop of Hamburg, Missionary to Denmark and Sweden, 865

On my worst days, many of which seem to come in February, I need to know of people like Anskar. Anskar labored long and hard, but saw few, if any, accomplishments. His efforts only began to pay off long after his death. I need the memory of Anskar in this hurry-up-and-get-there culture where the bottom line is all that counts for anything; Anskar is the antidote to our demand for instant results.

Little is said these days about the importance of the seemingly small contribution to the world. Yet life is lived and changed in the small things. Our world is made one life at a time, our lives ordered one day at a time. How can we look at this world, and at one another, and not appreciate the care God has lavished in our creation? After all, we Christians claim to have seen the face of God in the face of a child.

God, by whose power this world might be transformed in the twinkling of an eye, has such patient love for us and such admiration for our abilities that all creation awaits our handiwork. God patiently attends our halting attempts to help, even as God waited for Anskar.

From Brightest and Best: A Companion to the Lesser Feasts and Fasts by Sam Portaro (Cowley Publications, 2001).

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