All You Can Do Is Enough

Once upon a time, there was a wise man, who started every day with a walk on the beach before he began his work. 

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One day, as he was walking along the shore, he looked down the beach and saw a human figure moving like a dancer.  He smiled to himself at the thought of someone who would start the day off with dance, and so, he walked faster to catch up.

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As he got closer, he noticed that what the person was doing was not dancing at all, rather he was reaching down to the shore, picking up small objects, and throwing them into the ocean.


As the wise man came closer, he called out "Good morning! May I ask what it is that you are doing?"  The young man paused, looked up, and replied "Throwing starfish into the ocean."

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"I must ask, then, why are you throwing starfish into the ocean?" asked the somewhat startled wise man.  To this, the young man replied, "The sun is up and the tide is going out. If I don't throw them in, they'll die."

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Upon hearing this, the wise man commented, "But, young man, do you not realize that there are miles and miles of beach and there are starfish all along every mile?  You can't possibly make a difference!"

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At this, the young man bent down, picked up yet another starfish, and threw it into the ocean. As it met the water, he said,

"It made a difference for that one.”

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― Loren Eiseley

The Star Thrower, 1969


Often we look at the world at large, and even at the world closest to us, and feel discouraged that we can not make a seemingly huge impact.  God does not call us to solve every problem, but He does bless us with opportunities to help someone in need, to help the world in some way.  Be encouraged to find that person whom you can bless, that life that you can touch.  

All you can do is all you can do, but all you can do is enough!



For a "Picture Prayer", and another classic "ocean" story (my version of "Footprints In The Sand"), click here to find Jesus' blessing presence surrounding you.

© margaret young