Sometimes I’m almost afraid to research a verse. The meaning of the verse seems evident in the reading of it but when I research it, it turns out the context puts it in a different light.

So I was relieved when I researched Zechariah 4:10: “For who has despised the day of small things?” What it says is what it means in the context: God doesn’t despise small things. God delights in small beginnings. God is pleased even when you and I take small steps of growth or make little adjustments that draw us closer to Him or make a wise choice in overcoming a sinful habit. Isn’t that wonderful?

At the time of the prophet’s writing, some older people weren’t so impressed with the new Temple that was being built. They remembered the “old” Temple that had been destroyed in their lifetime. That had been the magnificant Temple built by Solomon, and to them, this replacement didn’t compare. They called it “a small thingbut God (through Zechariah) says, “Who is calling my work small'”?

Anything God does is big! That’s His message through the prophet Haggai in Haggai 2:3-4, 9:

‘Who is left among you who saw this temple in its former glory? And how do you see it now? Does it not seem to you like nothing in comparison? But now take courage, Zerubbabel,’ declares the Lord, ‘take courage also, Joshua son of Jehozadak, the high priest, and all you people of the land take courage,’ declares the Lord, ‘and work; for I am with you,’ declares the Lord of hosts… ‘The latter glory of this house will be greater than the former,’ says the Lord of hosts, ‘and in this place I will give peace,’ declares the Lord of hosts.

Here are some “small” thoughts:

  • What seems small doesn’t mean meaningless.
  • What seems small is often the beginning of something big for God.
  • God values “small” because then He is glorified when it brings great results.
  • In the same way, God chooses weak vessels so that He will be glorified.
  • Your first step is important. Don’t give up.
  • Small steps add up.

Matthew Henry in his Concise Commentary says about this verse: 
“Let not the dawning light be despised; it will shine more and more to the perfect day.”

Are you at the dawning light of cleaning up a messy house? Taking one step toward overcoming a sinful pattern? Taking one step of loving someone “well” even though there won’t be an immediate return on your investment?

Keep going! God is applauding your steps in His power. He already knows the result and can’t wait to reveal them to you. He says, “Be courageous and I will bring peace.”

(photo found at