One Starfish at a Time

A young child walking on the beach after a storm who observed thousands of starfish languishing in the sand. He began to pick them up one at a time and throw them as far as he could out into the ocean. When an older man saw what he was doing he asked the boy, “What do you think you’re doing? You can’t possibly save them all. How can you imagine you’re even making a difference?” The boy paused picked up another starfish, threw it out into the water and replied, “Well I made a difference for that one.” It’s an apt reminder that when we think the needs around us are too great for us to even make a dent in, God views each need individually. A myriad of times in my life, God has provided individual help and met my personal needs through the person who is willing to make a difference one person at a time.

Jesus told his followers that each time we help someone in need we are doing that service to Him. When we remember that, even one chance to love someone else, even one chance to give of our resources or our time, is a gift. It is a precious opportunity to give to Christ.

The little boy on the beach that day was the only hope of survival for any of the starfish. He may not have helped them all; but he did what he could. I find that often I am uniquely positioned to reach out and minister to a specific need. God’s divine design gives me opportunities to show forth His love, that are not available to anyone else. That alone motivates me to trust Him for a right response to those opportunities. His unique plan for each of us, includes rescuing specific “starfish.” If we allow the overwhelming needs around us to rub callouses over our hearts, we will not be sensitive to the needs God places within our ability to meet. But if we live out Christ, right where He places us, then He will use us to make a difference one “starfish” at a time.

One Response to "One Starfish at a Time"

  • Thanks for this very timely reminder, Tabitha. It couldn’t have come at a better time for me. See–you already made a difference in someone’s life!

    1 Linda Cate said this (December 11, 2012 at 4:34 pm) Reply

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