Raindrops on the Ocean
We all dream of accomplishing great things, of doing or being the one person who changes the world, finds the cure, transforms another individual. But maybe it’s really about the small things, the single moments that are the most important, like raindrops on an ocean.
To a casual observer, those raindrops don’t seem to make any difference in the vastness of the ocean. Insignificant, small, raindrops neither add to the volume of the ocean nor change the salinity or chemical composition of the ocean.
Parents, teachers, leaders spend years teaching children and young people that we can make a difference, that individuals can change the world, make life better, impact other people’s lives. Then we grow up and take our place in a world where seemingly the individual makes no lasting changes ever. The weight of evil often seems to bulldoze its way through life, steamrolling over ever struggle, every accomplishment.
So what’s the point? Should we just give up? Never try because we know the end result will always be the same? Just because we can’t see results, doesn’t mean there aren’t any.
Change comes slowly and ofttimes in ways we aren’t looking for. Social scientists have done years of research on the effects of individuals on history. Unfortunately, most of those results are never apparent until years after the individual is gone and history can look back and reflect. Only then do we realize it’s not the big changes that matters, but the tiny, insignificant ones that have lasting effect.
Consider the raindrop. It’s not about the raindrop changing the ocean, it’s about the ocean changing the raindrop. One insignificant raindrop becomes part of something much bigger, adding to the success of the ocean by allowing the ocean to swallow it up, combine it into something with greater power, greater outreach.
The ocean changes us. And the change within an individual, combined with the changes in other individuals is a vast, overwhelming force that cannot be challenged, nor stopped.