Making a Difference

God doesn't call us to save the world, but God does call us to serve the world.

Making a Difference

A man was walking down the beach one day. There had been a storm the night before, and he noticed that the beach was littered with starfish, hundreds of them in both directions. They had washed ashore with the high tide, and now they were stranded above the water line. Soon they would dry out in the sun and die.

As he continued down the beach, the man noticed a little girl standing at the edge of the surf. She was picking up the starfish and flinging them back into the ocean. One by one, she would pick them up and toss them back into the water.

When the man got near the girl, he said, "What are you doing?"

She replied, "I'm saving the starfish."

The man looked up and down the beach and said, "There are hundreds of starfish out here. It would take a hundred people a week to clean off this beach. You're not going to make any difference at all."

And the little girl picked up a starfish and tossed it in the water and said, "I just made a difference to that one."

God doesn't call us to save the world, but God does call us to serve the world.

Author

Loren Corey Eiseley (September 3, 1907 - July 9, 1977) was a highly respected anthropologist, science writer, ecologist, and poet.

Author information was updated as of the article's post date. Author profiles may not reflect author's current employment or location.

Image credit: © Ignacio García Losa (ignaciogarcialosa.com) via Flickr. Used by permission.

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