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The Small Things

By Mary Wilder Tileston

      Whosoever therefore shall break one of these least commandments, and shall teach men so, he shall be called the least in the Kingdom of heaven.
      MATTHEW 5:19

      THE great sterling duties, the exact truth of word, the resolute refusal to countenance wrong, the command of temper, the mastery of indolence, the unstained purity,--these, and such as these, form the character, and fashion our souls into instruments in God's hands for high and heavenly purposes in His Providence. But the carefulness over details, the watchfulness against faults which we know to be faults, but which, notwithstanding, seem venial, the devout regularity and attention in our private prayers, the invariable good-humor of our manners, the seeking for occasions of kindness and unselfishness, the avoidance of little temptations, the care not to cause little annoyances and little troubles,--to attend to all this for the sake of Christ our Master is the natural and fitting expression of a loving heart.

      The sins by which God's Spirit is ordinarily grieved are the sins of small things--laxities in keeping the temper, slight neglects of duty, sharpness of dealing.

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