Small is a present, not a punishment.

I struggle with the idea of being small.

Without realizing it, somewhere along the way being small began to mean being invisible, unseen, and unknown.

As someone who longs to be fully known and yet still fully loved, smallness seemed like a punishment and something to avoid at all costs. In middle and high school I volunteered and served, led and encouraged. I was the first to sign up for mission trips and in more than one play I was handed the role of the “good girl.” Truthfully, I was simply portraying an extreme version of my actual life. I did the right things and acted the right way and yes, I did had good intentions.

But deep inside I hoped that my life would bring God glory and also gain just a little bit of your attention. After walking a road that included brain surgery and many years of hurts from the Body of Christ, I so badly wanted to be seen — and still loved. Small didn’t seem like an option.

You can probably guess what came next. I went off to college and became incredibly involved, stretching myself thin and wearing myself out. Once again, I was doing a bunch of great stuff with good intentions but always with the hope that someone would see me, love me, and stick around.

Over the past two years, God has been leading me into another chapter of the story. This one is hard, but it is good. I’m finding that people are more important than projects and relationships matter more than results. Names are always more valuable than numbers.

People are matter more than projects. Relationships are more important than results. Names matter more than numbers.

He was teaching me and I was listening but to be honest, I didn’t know what it would look like, practically speaking, to get small. But then I went to Haiti and I saw the night sky painted velvet black, filled with thousands of stars flickering in the night – and I got it. Right then and right there with dirt in between my toes, He whispered quietly that I was so very small and yet so very seen.

In light of Who He is, we are small. But because He is within us and with us, we are so far from small. The God of the Universe is within us, walking daily in our very ordinary and mundane. We are small and we are seen. Somewhere in between the dirt streets of Haiti and the lit streets of Birmingham He taught me that small is a present, not a punishment.

So I pulled back. I excused myself from everything I could and I purposely skipped awards ceremonies and stages for quiet moments and deep conversations. It didn’t come naturally and yet it felt so right.

God has a funny sense of humor though, because as soon as I thought I was beginning to get the hang of accepting – and loving! – smallness, He asked me to write and self-publish book.

In two months those words will be available for anyone to read. With the click of a button, the story of finding my friend Jesus in ordinary places and the thin, hard spaces will suddenly be sold and shipped to loved ones and strangers alike. I’ve dreamed for years of being an author but this is most certainly not the story I wanted to tell and not the way I dreamt of telling it. I am daily becoming smaller and smaller, lifting up my broken places as an offering unto Him and trusting that although self-publishing might land my book in only 5 hands, those sets of hands will be the very 5 who most desperately need to hear of His love on every page of our story.

He is always there, in the beginning and at the end and on every page in between. So I’m getting small and making room for Him to be so very big. It isn’t always easy, but it is always good.

KaitlynBouchillonBioPicKaitlyn Bouchillon is a lover of words and crazy about the power of story. Her first book, Even If Not: Living, Loving and Learning in the in Between, will release in early 2016. {Sign up here to get updates and book freebies!} Kaitlyn is unashamedly addicted to coffee, queso, and the smell of a new book. A recent college graduate, she is a Virtual Assistant for DaySpring, Holley Gerth, Jennifer Dukes Lee and several others. You’ll find her words at KaitlynBouchillon,com and will most often find her on Instagram, although she occasionally pops into Facebook and Twitter as well.

womenwhoinspire featuredThis is the 51st post in Testimony Tuesday: Women who inspire. Click HERE to read all of the other posts in this series. Now it’s your turn to link up your story of how God is working in your life.

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Holly Barrett

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