“For behold, I have made you small among the nations …” (Jeremiah 49:15)
Here’s a little fun fact for you. Each tower of the Golden Gate Bridge contains more than 600,000 rivets. That’s a lot of rivets! Now you may be wondering what on earth that has to do with anything but if you read a little further it may have a lot to do with you! This little tidbit of seemingly unimportant information grabbed my attention when it was followed by the phrase, “and not one of them does something on its own.”
Each rivet is absolutely important but not a single one of them demands recognition for the job it does. I’d never look at a picture of the Golden Gate Bridge and say, “Oh my, look at rivet number 432,000 … isn’t that an awesome rivet!” Instead, when I look at all those rivets I realize they are an integral part of something amazing but it isn’t completely dependent on any one rivet. They each work together for a greater purpose. I offer this post today both as a reminder and as a comfort.
The reminder is about service, humility and the work we have in our discipleship. I can do all kinds of personal things to grow in holiness but if I’m not using my time, talents and treasures to serve others, I’m not a rivet that’s building the Kingdom of God on earth. The Ten Commandments are divided into two groups: Love God and Love Others! We are called to do both. One rivet won’t hold up a bridge any more than one person can singlehandedly build the Kingdom. This little tidbit has given me cause to consider how important a rivet I think I really am.
As I type, it’s early Sunday morning and I’m watching the sun come up through a giant airport window. It’s a stunning view and I’m so happy to be on my way to Texas to do the work He’s called me there to do, but I have to be careful not to think that makes my rivet any shinier than the next guy’s. After all, if they build a bridge with only one rivet, who would trust it? As I think of those 600,000 rivets, I’m reminded that strength for good work comes when the work is done by many, each doing what they are called to do, in the way they’re called to do it, all for the Glory of God, not to be noticed as a standout.
The comfort of this little thought is that the weight of the task doesn’t rest completely on one person’s shoulders. We don’t have to carry the weight of the world. We don’t have to be in charge. We don’t have to know everything, understand everything, and battle all the woes of the world on our own. God surrounded us with lots of other rivets to share the journey and the work of our discipleship. We were made to be in communion with others for lots of different reasons: God is so smart! So relax, look around, and find the rivets near you and trust in their support.
I have the great pleasure to teach in a school made up of a group of really awesome rivets! On any given day we pray, laugh, think, and sometimes cry together, offering the support, love, and assurance needed to build God’s Kingdom through our vocation as teachers. Look around: Who are the rivets near you?
Those rivets in the Golden Gate Bridge work together to support more than 112,000 vehicles a day. I’d say that’s a fabulous example of combined effort. The question is: Where is God calling me to be a rivet!
A Seed To Plant: Take some time in prayer to consider the kind of rivet God’s calling you to be. Ponder a bit on the ideas of service, humility and comfort from this simple post.
Blessings on your day!
Copyright 2019 Sheri Wohlfert