Do you delight in the details of things? You often hear the phrase, ”The devil is in the details,” but did you know that proverb is a modern variation of another and that it only came about around the 1960’s? The modern version twist of the original phrase speaks of problems and difficulties that arise when the details goÂ unexamined. As if the details are some hidden catch waiting to trip you up if you’re not paying attention.
This modern variant derives from an earlier German proverb ”“ ”Der liebe Gott steckt im detail,” which translates as ”God is in the detail.” This proverb spins a positive where it points out that big rewards come in the small details, so it is important to pay attention to them. As an artist, I recognize how important the details are to my work. Sometimes this can be a downfall for me as I often get caught up in the details that no one else would care about. But, I also know the differences made through adding a small detail to a work. Even the slightest curve of a line or the darkening of a shadow makes a tremendous distinction frequently resulting in what once seemed adequate, now just right.
The Importance of a Tiny Thing
There is a story passed down from the 14th century that emphasizes and illustrates the importance of details. An Italian stained-glass artist arrivedÂ to design and create a huge portrait for the window of a cathedral in Chartres, France. He carefully laid all the pieces he was to use out on the floor of the cathedral. Most of the magnificent hand pulled, painted, and cut pieces were very large. Among these awesome pieces of glass was a small, clear piece about as big as your fingernail. As the artist assembled the portrait, this tiny piece lay as if forgotten on the floor as only the large colorful pieces of glass found themselves in the portrait.
Even on the day of the window’s completion, the small piece of clear glass still laid on the ground. The entire city gathered to witness the unveiling of the brilliant and beautiful stained-glass portrait. The artist stood in front of the crowd, made a speech, and then dramatically pulled down the cloth cover. The crowd gasped at the beauty of the colorful window glowing in the sunlight.
However, after a few seconds, the crowd grew silent. They sensed that something was missing, the portrait just not quite right. The artist then walked over to where the little clear piece of glass lay, picked it up, and placed it in the portrait. It fit perfectly in the center of Jesus’ eye. As the sun hit this small detail, it gave off a dazzling sparkle. This magnificent stained-glass window still draws visitors today. The first thing they usually see is the tiny sparkle in the eye of Christ. This tiny detail makes all the difference.
A Detailed God
As the old proverb says, God is indeed in the details. He delights not only in the large parts of our lives but even the tiny details that are insignificant to everyone but us. The creator of this magnificent world we live in created each of his incredible designs down to the complicated tiny details. On the surface, these details may not seem important, but science is discovering every day how important these small details are to sustain life. So, it stands to reason that our God who designed and filled the world with details would also be concerned about the details that occur in our lives.
This week’s focus verse reminds us that not only is God interested in the details of our lives He delights in each one.
The Lord directs the steps of the godly. He delights in every detail of their lives. Psalm 37:23 (NLT)
It is important to realize how much God cares about everything you do, think, and say. He does delight when His followers seek Him out in all things. Therefore, it is important to trust in Him and wait patiently for Him to act. He wants you to come to Him with even the small things that you think you can ”handle yourself.” God isn’t just on standby for the big issues of your life, as He stands waiting for you to trust Him with the small things too.
Your creator wants to direct your way, but you must seek His advice on even the tiny things you do before you move forward. This requires spending a lot of time talking to God, reading His word, and most important, listening to His response.
Give God Your Details
God does care about everything you do, think, and say. He delights in every tiny detail of your life when you seek Him out. He is carefully watching over you and making firm every step you take while trusting in Him. So, challenge yourself to remember that no one ever succeeds in their own strength and that Christ stands ready with open arms to direct every tiny step you take.
Allow your convictions to realize that the creator of this detailed universe could do nothing less than care about the details of what He created. Be motivated in knowing that He cares about every insignificant thing in your life. And lastly, find comfort in knowing that you have a creator that delights in you because of His love for your life.
Love in Christ,
Every man’s life ends the same way. It is only the details of how he lived and how he died that distinguish one man from another.
What are your thoughts?
Do you allow God in on the details of your life? Have you recognized His attention to detail in creation? Share your thoughts on God and the details of life.
Credits Rice, W. (1999). Still More Hot Illustrations for Youth Talks. Grand Rapids: Zondervan/Youth Specialties.