“I have become all things to all people so that by all possible means I might save some.” (1Corinthians 9:22b NIV)
Two friends, Sam and Dave, went for a walk on the beach one morning. When they arrived they noticed the shoreline was cluttered with thousands of starfish washed up by a storm. Sam exclaimed, “Let’s save the starfish!” and picked one up and threw it back into the sea. Incredulous, Dave objected, “What difference does it make to save that one starfish? We’ll never be able to save them all.”
“It makes a difference for this one,” Sam returned, as he tossed another starfish into the waves. Dave watched in silence for a minute as his friend started making his way down the shoreline, tossing starfish into the surf as he went. Then, he bent down, picked up a starfish, and threw it into the sea.
A former counselee once told me that the first time she called me she was sitting on the edge of her bed with enough pills in her hand to end her life (information she didn’t tell me at the time). Because I booked her for an appointment for the next morning, she put the pills on her nightstand in order to give counseling a try. If it didn’t work, she reasoned, she would use the pills. Eventually, she threw the pills away. I may not be able to save every suicidal person in the world, but God saw fit to use me as His instrument to save this one. She is now a medical professional to the terminally ill. She is making a difference.
The difference we make in the world when we help another person is the difference it makes in that person’s life. That person is then able to make a difference in another person’s life. To me, that’s what serving Jesus is all about, making a difference in the world one life at a time.
Each of us can make this kind of a difference. Sure, you and I may not be able to save all the “starfish on the shore,” but we can save a few of them along our way. And, that will make all the difference in the world.
© Paul R Downing. Daybreak Devotions.