The other day I was sitting by a small pond and tossed in a pebble. As the waves expanded from the initial point of contact, I thought about the ripple effect. “A ripple effect occurs when an initial disturbance to a system propagates outward to disturb an increasingly larger portion of the system, like ripples expanding across the water when an object is dropped into it.” Anyway, it isn’t a bad analogy to describe how doing one act can affect things far into the future and in much larger ways than you might ever expect. One act of kindness might cause someone to change direction and move from a life of evil to good…the one good act might generate hundreds or thousands of good acts thru this person and those they touch. It’s really pretty interesting.
My wife sometimes wonders if part of our heavenly experience may be meeting people that we never met directly but were influenced thru our actions toward someone else…. ie. I helped “brother A” who later helped “brother B” who later became a saint and influenced many others…..it’s certainly a very encouraging thought.
So, is there a point to this BLOG ? Well, yes there certainly is …if we can all be patient for a second. Let me collect my thoughts….. okay, yes, now I remember. Ready?
While I may not become famous and make a great discovery or give a talk at the United Nations or at the Vatican or be voted to the Hall of Fame; nevertheless, I can allow the Holy Spirit to prompt me to certain small acts of kindness and love. I can do small acts of kindness. I can share Christ’s love in many small ways to many people. I can pray for those who are hurting. I can give a donation to a group that is helping spread the gospel in word and action. If I get cut off in traffic, I can swallow my pride and indignation and say a prayer for that person and ask the Lord to help them. Who knows, maybe one of these small acts might help them keep their live from going off the rails…. maybe they’re at the “end of their rope” and they need someone to help them. Who knows. But that one “pebble” thrown into the water might generate the wave that keeps them going…and if they keep going , maybe they’ll help their spouse or kids or co-workers to keep going.
I love the story of Ben Carson, the great neurosurgeon, whose mother worked like a dog to keep Ben and his brother off the streets. She worked two jobs day in and day out…forcing them to read books and listen to good music when she herself couldn’t read. If she had quit, maybe Ben wouldn’t have made it. If Ben didn’t make it, how many young children with complex brain diseases wouldn’t have made it.
But I also wonder who helped Ben’s mother with some random acts of kindness… probably no one remembers, and maybe they were pretty small acts…but you never know, maybe they kept her from quitting.
So, let’s get ready to throw that “Holy Spirit Pebble of Kindness” into the pond of this troubled world and see what happens…. maybe in heaven one day we will meet the saint that was influenced by that little pebble. And as Gandalf said to Frodo, “that’s a very encouraging thought”.