Covered with starfish that had washed up on the beach after a storm, a little girl stood looking. Suddenly she went into action walking down the beach and whenever she came near a starfish, she threw it back in the ocean.
A man watched her for some time and then approached the little girl.
“Are you foolish? You can’t possibly throw all these starfish back in the ocean. Your effort doesn’t matter.”
The little girl looked at him for a moment and then reached down, picking up another starfish and flung it to the ocean. Looking at the man she replied, “It mattered to that one.” (adapted from The Starfish Story by: Loren Eisley
Who do you identify with in this story?
Are you the man who looks at the great need and in a moment of being overwhelmed says, “I can’t change the world?”
Are you the child that looks at the great need and in a moment of compassion says, “I can change one life?”
This great need of changing the world assaults us every day. We see the cries of help everywhere and the magnitude of what needs to happen is daunting in its scope. We see it so often that we grow immune to it. So much so we develop what has come to be called “compassion fatigue”
Especially when we see a need that comes from clear across the globe. People we may never see. Situations we will never experience. It’s easier to just say “We need to work in our own backyards before we extend ourselves to other countries.” It’s easy to say, but the action seldom happens.
Even in our own backyards we fall back to “someone else will do it.” Yet, the “someones” have to start with some ONE.
These needs across the globe are unique in that the people who are being helped do not have the opportunities we have here. They lack the education, resources and are at the mercy of the elements to even attempt a change of their situation. It’s beyond them and up to us.
“But I can’t change the world!”
- A 13 year old girl asked for no presents on her birthday. Instead she requested donations to be made to Hope Springs International. She raised $500.
- A young man heard of the need of clean water and is currently halfway to his goal of $5000.
- CrossFit Hendersonville just met their goal of $10,000 to help ship Hope Springs International’s drilling machine.
- Two kids, who have for the last three years got their school involved in seed packet donations, have provided thousands of seed packets for our work.
- Recently we received a cry of help from Dongo-Manga, Chad for treated mosquito nets to protect children and pregnant mothers against malaria. Malaria is often a death sentence for children under the age of 5. In less than 2 weeks $3,700 was given providing 370 nets
These are just a few stories from Hope Springs International, but these are not isolated incidents.
Please take a moment to consider Charity Water. An organization similar to Hope Springs was blessed by a 9 year old named Rachel. She started gathering donations for her 9th birthday and shortly after raising $220, she was killed in a tragic car accident. Since her death, donations have continued to roll in and total over 1 million dollars. People have been moved by the action of one girl’s hope to change the world to provide for many.
Lee Hodges, President of Hope Springs, says the following
“A couple years ago we had one family step up one Sunday and made a commitment to build our orphanage after I mentioned it as a dream for “someday”.
I really believe if we could touch the hearts, of what some would call “average” Christians, we could through their influence in the lives of their friends and relatives accomplish so much. When they speak it is not just another organization asking for help; it is someone, their flesh and blood, who has a fire in their heart to make a difference.”
That is what it boils down to. Someone who is willing to see the need and say, “It mattered to that one.”
Very seldom is one person able to change the whole world, but one person can start a movement of momentum that CAN change the world.
Will you be that one? We have ideas! Contact us: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Hope Springs International is excited to welcome Alycia Adams Neighbors to our volunteer staff. Alycia is a prolific writer and Christian mother. She and her husband Brian have seven children and live in Hendersonville, Tennessee.