Walking Among Starfish

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My old blog was called “Real”, and this was my first post . . . I was re-reading them all and decided to repost this one, because it really captures the essence of my thoughts and values, as well as my real purpose in blogging . . .

Awareness . . . it all begins there. The first moment that the reality of something enters your consciousness . . . what will you do with that awareness? You have a lot of options, you really do. You could immediately turn your mind to something else . . . get busy . . . forget what it was you saw or heard. You could rationalize . . . reason . . . make an excuse? Anger . . . you could get real angry . . . fume and fight and get on a soapbox . . . and then . . . ? Or you could just tell yourself it is none of your business . . . you have your own problems to deal with, after all . . . and what could you really do anyway? You’re just one person . . . what could you possibly do that would make a real difference . . . ? I think there’s something we’ve been missing . . . Every day we are confronted by the problems of this world. Footage of copper-haired African children with flies on their faces . . . emaciated infants who are not long for this world . . . men, women and children sifting through gigantic piles of refuse, looking for anything they can eat or sell . . . women dipping plastic buckets into polluted rivers and feeding it to their babies. The news keeps us informed about wars, drought, wildfires, political unrest, homelessness, joblessness . . . it is overwhelming. What the average person lacks is not compassion – it is power. What in the world can one person do to stem the tide of disaster and evil that seems to be never-ending in our world? I wonder if the average person knows about all the good things going on in the world? Do they know about all the hungry children being fed, all the homes, schools & churches being built? All the wells of fresh, clean water being dug? All the medical care being given? All the communities being rebuilt one family at a time? Those are the things we don’t see much on the news . . . but it’s happening . . . all over the world real people are making a real difference in the lives of real people. I’d love to show you . . . There’s a story I heard about a young man walking along the beach. The sand was covered with starfish, suffocating by the hundreds. The young man was walking along, picking them up one at a time, flinging them back into the ocean. Another man saw him and laughed at the futility of his efforts. “Why bother?” he said. “You can’t save all these starfish . . . this is stupid . . . it doesn’t matter.” The young man bent down, picking up one starfish and holding it high. “It matters to THIS one, ” he said, tossing it into the life-giving water. And that’s what this blog is all about. What you do matters. YOU matter. That’s what’s real.

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