It’s funny how small things can catch us off guard and show us that small doesn’t mean insignificant. One lone key on my Bluetooth keyboard for my tablet gave me a powerful lesson in the impact little things can have.

I connected my tablet to a keyboard I’ve had for a while. Everything seemed to be working great until I made a mistake and I needed to backspace. That one little key in the upper right corner, only one of the 64 keys on my keyboard, didn’t work. I tried several things to fix it but, nothing worked. I tried to remain optimistic and convinced myself that I didn’t really need that key to type my first draft. But, it didn’t take long before I became keenly aware just how much I needed that little key and just how easy it is to make a mistake. My keyboard without a backspace reminded me of a 3 valuable lessons:

Life doesn’t come with an undo button.

While most mistakes in life are fixable, sometimes we stumble into a mess and realize that there’s no “backspace” key to save the day. Like a mistyped word glaring from a page, our mistakes might be immediately obvious or, they may take us a while to notice. Choose to learn from your mistakes. Apologize when necessary. Make changes to keep from making the same ones again. Choose your words carefully and choose to be present for the moments that matter most because we can’t take a word back once it’s spoken. And, we can’t get back time once a moment has passed. Learn from yesterday while you embrace today.

Empty space has value.

Recognized the importance of margin and space. If we allow our lives to be run-ons from one activity to the next, we miss out on the space needed to give the important things definition. When I was typing with my broken keyboard, a few words occasionally accidentally ran together. Looking back at the text, I realized it had become muddy and harder to read. In life, don’t allow a hectic pace to blur the space needed to give your moments significance. Allow yourself time to breathe and come up for air. The space will help you appreciate life a bit more.

Small things can be significant.

It was just one little key out of 64 on my keyboard but without it, the keyboard became hard to use. Suddenly it was not longer as effective as it had once been. As I think about that unassuming key at the upper right hand corner, I realize how unnoticed it may have been before. I think sometimes we all feel like that key. We’re off to the side doing our thing that feels insignificant. No one really notices do they? Yes, they do. We might not always realize the value we bring to those around us or understand how our actions weave together to make the fabric of our community. But even the smallest positive contribution is significant – a genuine smile, a few minute phone call to a friend whose hurting, or that thing that’s been on your heart to do. Your follow through might just provide the breath or the space someone needs right now to make it through today. The next time you doubt your effort matters, remember my backspace key. Any nudge, even the smallest one that God puts on your heart is indeed significant!

It’s your turn:

Recently my life has looked a bit like the text I tried to type on that keyboard. Some space or margin has been missing. Demands of my day job have caused things to run together. And, in my tired state I’ve no doubt made mistakes or forgotten a few things. It’s ok in life to have miss-steps. But let them teach you. After all, it’s in the moments when we can’t simply hit “undo” that we learn many of life’s lessons.

Has something as simple as a key on a keyboard ever given you a surprising life lesson? Or, has my broken backspace given you a good reminder today? I’d love to hear from you. Click to join the conversation.  Small things such as a broken key can have a big impact. But, it can be just the reminder we need to remember when we’re nudge to do small things of good that little can be synonymous with significant!

Until next time friend, be blessed!