21 Feb 2014

Five Minute Friday: Small

On Friday’s we silence the inner critic. The loudest of all naysayers. And on Fridays we remind ourselves that The Word is for us and loves us and welcomes us.

Your words are safe here.


So come and write with us. Together. On one word for five minutes. Here are all the details. And then link up your post or leave it in the comments. But remember, the one must rule here is that you visit the person who linked up before you and encourage them in their writing.

That’s it. The gift of encouragement – pass it on.

Today the word is the one that’s been beating hard in my heat the last couple of weeks.

Today the writing prompt is SMALL.


There is no shame in the small.

There is no shame in quiet.

There is no shame in life without stages, passports or microphones.

There is beauty in the diligent life lived fully present right in your own neighborhood. There is ministry that sneaks in the back door along with the neighbor’s kids and all the mud in the world.

There is life on the sofa listening to a friend who drove two hours for coffee.

There is testimony in bending over the art project dropped on the kindergarten corridors and gluing lost jellybeans back onto their poster board.

Give me the determined joy of missions in a four block radius. Tell me about the mom you listened to over an over-priced caramel frappe and I’ll tell you how I saw Jesus today.

Show me your dirty dishes and I’ll show you my heart.

Give me a night with tortillas and spicy chicken spread on the table between us and I’ll give you my story.

Split an ice cream cone with my kids, help them erase their toy white board again and again and again and I won’t forget that you were a guest in my house and we were all better because of it.

Small lives in these nooks and crannies and whispers it’s beautiful secrets and only my heart is big enough to contain them all. How they spill over between bath and bedtime, how they emerge from a big yellow bus and rumble with tomorrow.


How they remind me that I am just the right size when I’m watching a three year old twirl, me her only audience.


 PS It’s been one week since we launched this big dream on the hopes of hundreds of small stories and look. Look!!


{ Leave a Comment }
  1. 1

    Sigh… I just adore your heart and you. There is no shame in small… A to the MEN!!! What a reminder.

  2. 2

    Annie Barnett said at Idea Camp, I just want to stay small. And she meant this. Just this good stuff. I pray God would make me small in all the most perfect ways. That I will always fit right in His side, no matter what. There’s no shame in small. SO MUCH AMEN!

    • 3
      Annie Barnett says:

      These words. I feel them deep down in my bones, sister. Love you & love this.

      • 4

        See now? This is why I love you people. You get the power of small, the GOD-ness of small.

      • 6

        I swear, Annie, those words you spoke and the way you shine grace and make room and invite in, you stuck with me most out of all the fancy speakers (and don’t get me wrong, they were awesome) but still, your words, they keep coming back whenever I feel lost in it all. I remember I too want to be small.

  3. 7

    Small. Tucked up tiny in my palm like a pearl.

    How can something so small have so much force of life that it wrecks havoc on mine? Aching hips, supersonic smells, ship-at-sea stomach. Reeling with the knowledge, joy, terror of it. New life.

    Amazing that dictators, peace makers, novelists, and scientists all the same: tiny, tucked up. Small.

    Oh, that we would remember that God always builds the Amazing from the small. “Faith like a mustard seed,” because the tiniest seed grows into this onwards and upwards plant that can break through rock. Ideas, hopes, are like that. One conversation in the middle of the desert with one small, humble man is what led a whole nation to freedom. One conversation in the middle of a garden with one small, humble woman is what led the whole world to freedom.

    Small. Tucked up tiny like a pearl. Powerful, powerful, pearl, in the palm of God’s hand.

    • 8

      Five minute Friday, above!

      And it was supposed to be “…scientists all START the same….”

      But, hey, this is unedited, right? ;)

  4. 9

    Lisa-Jo, just read your 5 minutes after writing mine. Gold as usual. Love it.

  5. 10
    Jennifer Weckstein says:

    Oh, this. This seems anything but small to me. I have been working myself up to this FMF every week for weeks, maybe even for a month or two. Tonight is the night! I will conquer this very big thing for me and focus on my small.

    I desperately want to stay focused on the small in my life. I have these two beautiful little ladies and a wonderful husband and I have so many blessings in my life. I try – oh, how I try – to be mindful and present and in-the-moment and whatever you want to call it, but there are dishes to do and laundry to fold and papers to grade and lunches to make and clothes to iron and on and on and on. I hear everyone telling me it’s okay to let the laundry go and the dishes stack up and the mail can be sorted later . . . I know this! I so know this, because there are board games to play and fingernails to paint and silly stories to tell and beautiful little dimples to stare at. Yet this balance is so hard for me. So hard. I want to be the best mama I can be to these so deserving little girls I love to the moon and back, and why can’t I just relax and be more laid back and just enjoy these beautiful, ordinary, once-in-a-lifetime small moments with them??? Why do I steal into the kitchen to put the papers in the recycling bin or hang up the coat someone left on the floor? So I put those sweet girls to sleep and then I stare at them for a moment and then I go to bed myself. And I wake up the next morning and love them with all my heart and soul and I try again.

  6. 11

    And just like that. The words that I thought were so bold on my own page found sisterhood in yours. Beautiful.

  7. 12

    Oh gosh–my eyes filled with tears with this word. Here is my FMF:

    Go: Small. Small is something that I am not. My heart is not small–I love big. My mouth is not small–I am exuberant. My body is not small–it is way to big! It shields me from every being hurt again.

    With each baby/miscarriage I put on 20 lbs . . . and it never came off. I’ve been blessed 6 times–you do the math. After baby #2 my mom died–I was devastated that my mom would never see my baby! But now–I’m slowly embracing my history. Making amends with everything and everyone who has caused me harm. I want to live in harmony. In order to live in harmony with the mantra “I am love” I must recognize each moment with intention and decide does it move me towards love and compassion or away from it towards hate and bitterness.

    Each time I let go and move into love–I feel lighter, I feel less burden, I feel more in harmony, more compassionate.

    My goal isn’t to be “small” but to feel the joy and excitement I know lives inside of me–which can’t be measured by a size 4 or size 12 or size 18! I’m on my way to being my perfect version of small!

    Be Blessed!

  8. 13

    Hello! this is my first time to write a Five Minute Friday…I read you all the time…follow you on Twitter and today I ventured out! Your words on Small moved my heart and it has enlarged and been blessed by just joining in…thank you for having me be a part of this good thing…:)

  9. 14

    Love you.

  10. 15

    I decided to do this today. Small steps, right? Of course, small also describes the 2 children (2.5 & 4) running around while I am trying to write. Sigh.


    The smallest gesture, the smallest detail. It is the small things that can make the most difference if we let them.

    Small IS change, small IS doable and small victories can add up to large ones. Listen to that small voice inside that tells you that “you can.”

    Small things can be the most difficult, as we tend to discount their power and their might.

    So today, I will start small.

  11. 16

    I’ve been reading this blog for some time but this is the first time I’ve participated in the Five Minute Friday. I used to write a lot but sometimes it feels like I’ve lost the words … or the inspiration. But today I tried again and hopefully I will make it a habit and hopefully I will continue to improve. This Five Minute Friday thing is a really good motivation to start writing again! :)

  12. 17

    I needed this today. How do you do that? Every single time I come here, God speaks to my heart. I needed to know that it’s not the big stuff, it’s the small ones. Thank you.

  13. 18



    Where will this word small take me today, on this page, in this paragraph. I dont want to be small but I am. When I feel too big and have too much to do, I wish I was small, I want to be big but I know small is where it is at! If I dont start and stay at small, it all becomes tooo much. Too much to think about, too much to do. So I have to do the small. One small action in a small instant. Easy does it. Small is easy. Big is hard . All the easy smalls add up to the hard big which isn’t so hard when it’s taken in smalls! Smalls become the big after a while and I have not realized it! Nothing is big, it is all smalls adding up, multiplied, divided and subtracted. In retrospect, the big is only smalls being done one at a time.
    “My burden is easy and my yoke is light” Small is easy and light!!!!

    Love you Lisa-Jo
    You make me realize my life with your word.

    • 19

      thank you for this. It’s hard to remember to take everything in small steps when I want to rush through everything and get it done.

  14. 20

    LOVE your new look on the blog!

  15. 21

    There’s so much big in the small.

  16. 22

    Show me your dirty dishes and I’ll show you my heart. – A new friend opened her beautiful but messy home to me years ago. Initially I was shocked she would invite me in with her place in all sorts of disarray but I soon saw what she’d done was open her heart. We’ve had many wonderful moments amidst the mess since then and I’ve even allowed her a peek at mine. She lives in Florida now and I haven’t seen this friend in awhile but your post brought her back to me. Thanks.

  17. 23

    If God wanted me to be bigger, I would have been bigger. But I feel small. I am shorter than my cousins. My purpose in life is not to be a big girl.
    But we all feel small, don’t we, when we look into the sky?
    The stars are huge, they’re beautiful, they’re amazing. They’re nothing, nothing at all, compared to the great God who made them.
    These make me feel small.
    But God loves small people. God made the world for small people. Jesus died to save small people. Jesus gave us His love, which is not small. This love is the greatest thing, the biggest thing, that ever happened. This love makes us feel big, because God looks at us, even though we’re tiny in the universe.
    So I’m not that small. I’m not too small for God to notice me. And with God’s love and promises, I feel big and confident. Only in Him.

    This is my first ever five-minute friday.

  18. 24

    Sometimes I feel so small and insignificant. My job is to be a mom to a little person and it sometimes hard to see what impact I make on this one little person’s life. So sometimes I feel small and insignificant. And sometimes I wonder why I made this sacrifice to stay at home…
    But then he holds me tight when he is scared and giggles while we play and I know that this was the best choice I could ever make. It may be hard and people on the outside may not know how hard the daily struggles are, but it is the right choice for our family.
    Who knew something so small could turn your life upside down. I know I wasn’t prepared for the hard work that motherhood required, but I feel so blessed to be a part of this group and to have the title of Mom!

    • 25

      I grew up in a happy, messy home with a faithful stay-at-home mom. I thank God for that, and some day your children will too. Keep on, dear sister!

  19. 26

    Beautiful from beginning to end. The twirling was just lovely.

  20. 27


    Some days, my heart is tired of the struggle. Can’t God just send a full-blown miracle? Ten thousand angels? At the very least, jut the promise that I will taste victory one day?
    But the Spirit condemns me. Who am I to twist the arm of the Almighty? Who am I to offer bite sized faith, and expect Big Mac miracles? And who am I to claim that the small victories aren’t worth celebrating? God made mountains, but He made flowers, too.

    • 28

      Absolutely conveys how small we are in comparisson to our big God who loved us first. And reminds us that while He is the God of all creation, even the smallest detail is not overlooked. He is mindful of us whom he created to walk with Him. :)

  21. 29

    I just love this!!

  22. 30

    Five Minute Friday: “Small”

    He was so small. Everything about him. Tiny and perfect and small. Okay, maybe the cries weren’t so small, and the diapers weren’t so perfect, but he was a small little gift that we were to love and nurture and grow into adulthood without a clue. We had so much to learn but loving him wasn’t one of those things. That happened before the first heartbeat was heard and the first kick was felt, before we even met this small little person that would change our lives in a really big way.

    • 31

      So true, my smalls are now big, and we are onto the next generation of smalls, and I am surprised all over again how much love someone so small can I still in me.

  23. 32

    It is amazing how someone so small can grab onto my heart so completely. My grandson Bowen was born this summer. From the first moment I held him, I was hooked. It happened just the same with My granddaughter Sienna.
    I was so blessed to be at Bowen’s birth. After the midwifes left, and Kaila and Jesse went to sleep, a very alert little man and I cuddled on the couch for several hours, just staring at each other. Bowen was born with the wisdom of the ages in his eyes, just like Kaila when she was a newborn. He lay peacefully on my chest, wrapped in my heartbeat. I absorbed all the tiny newborn babyness of him, imprinted my love on him. 

    • 33

      Isn’t that so beautiful, Patricia? I really relate to this post cause I have just had a baby in October!! So agree – so small and yet so absolutely all-consuming! Congrats! I love the line about him wrapped in your heartbeat – lovely.

  24. 34

    Your words this week… just a small little bit of what I needed to hear. Taking the small step this week to just be me and not try to be anybody bigger…

  25. 35

    This is a small flat, and sometimes it crushes me with its smallness. I know each of the ten corners, I know what’s in the fridge, I know the mess that is mine. And inside my flat I become smaller. The things I do, changing nappies, feeding, reading stories – these aren’t small, and I know that. I become smaller because this is a rattling place when there’s just us two, and I miss the sound of adults laughter, of bustling work, of life going on. So I go outside. And there, the world is big. There the sky is so big that it splits itself over sea and forest and it still keeps on going. The sun is so bright and large and welcoming that it becomes a friend that smiles on us as we walk, making everything dazzle. The birds swoop past us, rainbow birds, little birds, chasing swallows, and I realise again that I am part of something big and Someone great. And yet He has become very small and lives to remind me daily of the big and beautiful things I search for.

  26. 36

    Lisa Jo, I read your 5 minute Fridays along with Between Blue Rocks, and always find myself amazed at the power in the words of you two young ladies. There is a clarity and wisdom beyond your ages that I respect which gives me even more hope for future writers. Positive energy flows from your pens like Niagara Falls.
    Thank you for sharing these words with all of us, even ones you do not know and letting us enter into the depths of your beautiful souls.

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