It doesn't take much to make a ripple in your life or in the life of another. A little touch ripples through you and out into your world and causes other ripples that extend out to touch the lives of those around you.
I'm in the business of helping people deal with the ripples of life. Often the people most affected didn't make the ripples, but now they have been touched by them, affected by them and they have to decide what to do about it. It always amazes me how much damage little ripples make...an unkind word, a mean look, a thoughtless comment......there are hundreds of ripples we could add to this list. They seem so small, so insignificant, what damage could they possibly do? And yet ripples gradually mold us, affect us, change us.
Yesterday I spent about 4 hours talking to people who are struggling with the results of ripples...what an interesting phrase...the results of ripples. Little things that make a big difference in a life.
For one it was the thoughtless actions of a mate over many years that have gradually worn down his love. For another it was a sin of a relative that has affected his whole family in a way that will ripple down several generations.
You may have ripple damage in your life...little ripples that have touched you and affected you so that now they seem like they were waves, harsh crushing waves, meant to hurt. But for the one who started the ripple it was just a small thing, nothing meant, they have already forgotten about it.
To the one who caused it...a ripple, to the one who felt it...a crushing wave that they haven't forgotten to this day. They may still hurt from the sting of your ripple.
Let me offer a simple remedy, some ripple control if you wish, that has directed my life and one I must often remind myself of. It's the solution to ripple damage-
John 13:34 "Let me give you a new command: Love one another. In the same way I loved you, you love one another.
John 13:35 This is how everyone will recognize that you are my disciples--when they see the love you have for each other."
These are amazing words to me. They speak of something I simply cannot do on my own. I must depend on Christ to do it in and through me....to love as he loved. I often find myself praying, "Lord, I can't, will you do it through me?" And he always does. If we could ever see people the way God does it would change our lives forever! Living in his love, and then loving others because of the love we have received would turn all of our ripples into calm waters, lives that easily reflect his image in us to those around us.