Updated on September 30, 2015
On being a nickel…
Life transitions are funny. I find myself picking through a plastic sandwich bag of coins. In the old life, coin collecting was not so much a hobby as a necessity to wash laundry. As those days are past, I pick through, craving the fruit candies in the vending machine outside my new office.
I bypass the quarters. I leave the dimes be. And the pennies, well, I’ll need to figure something out for them later. My eye searches out the nickels. For the bag is heavy with nickels.
Practically speaking, using the nickels first lightens the load. Twice as many coins will be needed, leaving twice as many coins lessened from the bag. Spiritually speaking, I giggle at the metaphor.
Nickels are differently-sized than the other coins. The dimes continue to catch on the pennies. And the quarters’ lumbering size just gets in the way of my nickel search. Nickels stand alone with the only smooth sides among the silver-colored coins. They don’t catch on anything. Many overlook them–after all, it takes twice as many coins to accomplish the same thing as a dime, and five times as many as a single quarter will accomplish.
But they are prolific. And with each of the drop, drop, drops of the many nickels in the vending machine, I smile at how God doesn’t need spiritual quarters or dimes. He can use spiritual nickels. Spiritual nickels who together outnumber the dimes needed, the quarters needed. The sheer number of spiritual nickels means that many more individual hearts and lives that can be touched.
God need not everyone be a quarter, or half-dollar. He need not everyone be rough on the edges to stir up hearts in considering controversy. He need not the small-sized and nimble spiritual dimes that can do the job in half the time. God has a place for spiritual nickels.
If you’re feeling like your contribution is so small, or only impacts a few, or you find it often over-looked, fear not. If you’re feeling rather nickel-y and wonder if you need to change yourself to be something different, bigger, of more value, know your heavenly Father made you exactly as you are. Leave the trying to be bigger aside. Let His creation, His lovingly-created you, shine. Be who He created you to be. You may feel like a nickel, but nickels are so very useful.