This past week horror entered our homes. We witnessed the devastating ferocity of nature. Neighbourhoods were destroyed and thousands of lives were lost or will never be the same. My heart has felt heavy, enveloped by a sense of weariness and sadness at the enormity of the suffering.
And then came glimmers of light. Stories of courage by people who risked their own lives to save others: the man who walked into Costco and bought generators and foodstuff to ship to those so desperately in need. Acts of love and kindness became part of the picture.
Rather than sinking into overwhelm or despair and being able to help no one, we can acknowledge and move through our own feelings. Then we begin to lift ourselves up and can help others. We can’t reach everyone, but we can influence our own circle of friends, family and community. Each loving gesture, however small, does indeed make a difference.
Simple things, like smiling at a stranger, being patient with a child or senior, laughing with a friend and holding onto feelings of love, have a ripple effect and contribute to the greater good and the wellbeing of the world.
There is the story of two friends walking along a beach. One of them picked up a stranded starfish and returned it to the ocean. Their friend commented that doing so really made no difference in the greater scheme of things. The reply was “it made a difference to that starfish”! And so it is. Everything we do makes a difference.