When I watch the news, I wish I could change the world. Make it better. Brighter. Warmer. Because all I see are stories of violence and hate. Greed. Hunger. And it’s enough to make a person cry. It’s enough to make a person wonder, “What can I do? I’m only one person. There are so many hurting people out there.”
I’m in the supermarket. I overhear an old woman talking to her friend. She admits how worried she is about finding the money to pay her oil bill. I wish I had the money to help the elderly stay warm this winter. I help a little girl carry books into church and notice that her shoes don’t fit. I wish I could make sure all the children were well-dressed. I listen to a single mother — a friend — dream about not having to work so much, so that she could spend time with her baby. I wish I could see this dream come true for all the single parents who are struggling to make ends meet.
I drive by a nursing home and see a lone face peering out a window. A silent cry for a friend. A little girl runs up to me and gives me a hug. Doesn’t want me to let go, because no one holds her at home. A business-woman marches past me, trying to look professional and confident, but can’t hide the tears.
There’s so much pain. So much loneliness.
There’s only one me.
It’s easy to become over-whelmed and to feel like giving up. It’s like someone is asking us to move grain from a burning silo, with the stipulation that we move only one piece of grain at a time. No matter how tirelessly we work, we know that we can’t save it all. We can’t save most.
So we look at what we couldn’t fix and feel as though the cares of the world are on our shoulders. There are so many we couldn’t feed or keep warm. So many we didn’t have the chance to hug and show love to. And we forget about the grain behind us.
It’s a much smaller pile. But to them, we did change the world. Because we changed their world.
And to them, what we did was enough.
It all begins with one person at a time. Whose world can you change today?