Many of us are familiar with the story of a young boy who was walking along a beach upon which thousands of starfish had been washed up during a terrible storm. When he came to each starfish, he would pick it up, and throw it back into the ocean. People watched him with amusement.
He had been doing this for some time when a man approached him and said, “Little boy, why are you doing this? Look at this beach! You can’t save all these starfish. You can’t begin to make a difference!”
The boy seemed crushed, suddenly deflated. But after a few moments, he bent down, picked up another starfish, and hurled it as far as he could into the ocean. Then he looked up at the man and replied,
“Well, I made a difference for that one!”
Oftentimes in the church we think of this story in terms of evangelism. I was thinking at this time in our world that it would also be a great story in regards to our calling as peacemakers. Jesus said, “Blessed are the Peacemakers.” I look at the fractured world around me. I scratch my head. It would easy to look at the complexities of this world’s present and past divisions and simply say, “It is beyond me.”
Guess What? It is beyond me. Guess What? It is beyond you. Guess What? You know where this is going, don’t you? That’s right! It is not beyond the God that you love and serve. We’ve sung the song so many times. He’s got the whole world in His hands. God also has a plan for this whole world that He carries in His holy hands. It is called the New Jerusalem. It is the city of Shalom. It is God’s city of peace. “They shall neither harm nor destroy in all my holy mountain: for the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the LORD, as the waters cover the sea.”
Is this just pie in the sky religion, Pastor Donny? Let’s all just wait around and let Jesus sort this thing out in the end, huh? Nope. You and I have a part to play in all this. I can’t fix the whole world. I can-by God’s grace-make peace with this one…and this one…and this one…. I will leave you with a prayer by a great Christ follower named Francis.
Lord, make me an instrument of your peace:
where there is hatred, let me sow love;
where there is injury, pardon;
where there is doubt, faith;
where there is despair, hope;
where there is darkness, light;
where there is sadness, joy.
O divine Master, grant that I may not so much seek
to be consoled as to console,
to be understood as to understand,
to be loved as to love.
For it is in giving that we receive,
it is in pardoning that we are pardoned,
and it is in dying that we are born to eternal life.
Photo by Ninno JackJr on Unsplash