Do we ever really know the impact of a spoken word, of a decision so small that we hardly consider it, of an action so minute that it’s forgotten as quickly as it happened?
Some of the very reasons that Humankind has grown, is because of these very things. I don’t know that we’re ever fully aware of this ripple effect because often we never see or hear what takes place further down the chain. We drop a pebble (our word, our decision) and walk away without ever knowing the full impact.
There’s a blessing that I’ve often felt in watching this effect. Sometimes I think Lancaster County, PA is a hotbed of grass roots growth. If you ever want to waste some hours of your day, just invite me for coffee. I have stories upon stories to entertain you with. One hair dresser shares with a client, home recently from Haiti, about another client who sells bottled water in order to dig wells in developing countries. One church goer says to another “hey, could we…?” One patient, waiting for surgery offers a name of a potential contact and the cascade starts all over again. This phenomena is amazing and exciting and astounding. Each person who has ever played a part in this ripple effect has truly helped grow something so much bigger than a handful of people could ever do on their own.
But my favorite, my FAVORITE (as though it could get better) is to stand at the end of those ripples, when I stare in to a pair of dark brown eyes who is grabbing my hand, or hugging me, or pressing their palms together and uttering their thanks. It’s an honor to know these little stories, these pebbles that have started off a ripple effect that has changed a future. When I say thank you- to YOU, it is not just from me but from them. The life that is changed because of the pebble you cast.
“I alone can not change the world, but I can cast a stone across the waters to create many ripples” ~Mother Teresa