Probably one of the best known verses in the bible, that affirms the worth of man, is John 3:16. It tells us that; “God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.” The fact that God would send his son to die for mankind sends a message that the human family has great worth in God’s sight. Over my lifetime, I’ve seen an eroding of moral values and a belief that there are no consequences for the bad choices we make, when our life here is over.
There’s a story that comes to mind when people tell me that helping the homeless is an exercise in futility. In her book, The Star Thrower, Loren Eisele tells of an older man who used to go to the ocean and walk along the beach every morning before he began his work. Early one morning, he was walking along the shore after a big storm and found the beach littered with starfish as far as the eye could see. In the distance, the man saw a small boy approaching. As the boy walked, he occasionally bent down to pick up an object and throw it into the sea. The boy came closer and the man called out, “Good morning! May I ask what you are doing?”
The young boy paused, looked up, and replied “Throwing starfish into the ocean. The tide washed them up onto the beach and they can’t return to the sea by themselves.” When the sun gets high, they will die, unless I throw them back into the water.”
The old man replied, “But there must be tens of thousands of starfish on this beach. I’m afraid you won’t really be able to make much of a difference.” The boy bent down, picked another starfish and threw it as far as he could into the ocean. Then he turned, smiled and said, “It made a difference to that one!”
We all can create positive change, but sometimes you will find yourself thinking, “how much of a difference can I really make?” I think this is especially true when it comes to the homeless issue here in North County. So, if you find yourself thinking that way, it helps to remember the starfish story. You might not be able to solve the whole homeless problem, but at least you can change a small part of it, for someone.
Join with us at Bread of Life and invest in helping those who come to us for help. Like one starfish at a time, lets help one person at a time.