The small rock in your hand looks insignificant compared to the large body of water in front of you. The almost weightless rock staring at the intimidating volume of blue that goes for miles and whose depth is untold. Do you hold on to the rock to protect it or do you release it to discover the possibilities?
We are conditioned to believe that making a noticeable impact requires a big impression but your fingerprint is the closest evidence you have of how untrue that is. A fingerprint, small as it is can be the one thing that solves a big criminal case. My pastor always encourages our church members to call and check on each other during the week. A simple text message or short phone call during the week to a fellow church member goes a long way to building a family atmosphere within the church. The church is closely knit because there is care on display. I heard it said that people don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care. Members in our church have continually expressed that these simple acts have made a lasting impression.
We all want to make a significant impact through our lives. It’s the small changes we make day by day that amount to the big changes we want to see. If you think about it, every step made, as small as it may be, accumulates.
Making the small financial changes you make today of giving, saving, paying off debt and investing your money, instead of spending it all, could result in the bigger effect of living the life you want when you get older. Creating a disturbance has a negative connotation to it, but it all depends on perspective.
The continent of Africa is known for its rich natural resources, breathtaking landscapes, and enormous wildlife. It’s also known for high levels of corruption. One president is creating a disturbance by rooting out corruption. President John Magufuli, Tanzania’s current president, also nicknamed as the “Bulldozer” has kept true to his promise he made on the campaign trail. By making surprise visits to public offices and facilities, he began rooting this terrible vice out. He slashed the budget for a state dinner celebrating the opening of the Parliament to free up funds for hospital beds, canceled a lavish Independence Day celebration and diverted those funds to fight a cholera outbreak. He has banned foreign travel for government officials with the exception of the president, vice president and prime minister. This has become contagious for others in the government. His prime minister made a visit to the Dar es Salaam port and discovered missing shipping containers costing an estimated 80 million shillings ($40 million) in lost revenue!
When David came to the battlefield and found the army of Israel shaking in fear because of the Philistine giant named Goliath, his bold words created a disturbance. “Then David spoke to the men who stood by him, saying, “What shall be done for the man who kills this Philistine and takes away the reproach from Israel? For who is this uncircumcised Philistine that he should defy the armies of the living God?” (1 Samuel 17:26 NKJV). Can you guess what David used to kill the giant? A stone with a sling.
Martin Luther King Jr. created a disturbance in the United States when he led the civil rights movement, using non-violent demonstrations to push for equal rights for African Americans in a heavily segregated time.
Nelson Mandela created a disturbance, by leading a movement to fight apartheid in South Africa and champion the cause of freedom for blacks in the country. Here is a snippet of the speech he gave in court before he was sentenced to life imprisonment at Robben Island. “I have fought against white dominion, and I have fought against black dominion. I have cherished the ideal of a democratic and free society in which all persons live together in harmony and with equal opportunities. It is an ideal which I hope to live for and achieve. But if needs be, it is an ideal for which I am prepared to die.“
Barak Obama created a disturbance by becoming the first African American president of the United States of America. He could have decided not to run on the basis that there had never been any other African American president in the long history of the nation.
We often look at what has never been done as a reason why it can’t be done. We use past evidence to talk ourselves out of future opportunities. We allow history to detain us. The conversations we hear can impede us from pursuing an idea or a dream. When someone says, “can’t” do you equate that to mean “don’t?” For example, do you interpret “It can’t happen” to “Don’t even try it?” When the analysis says that majority have attempted and failed do you automatically conclude you will fail as well?
The herd mentality is as contagious as the common cold. If it goes unchecked it can progess into a passion killing, momentum draining, and creativity destroying habit. We find ourselves doing things just because everyone else is doing them. We avoid asking the hard questions because we fear the level of responsibility that accompanies standing up to the statistics and facing the facts, while still holding to the conviction that things don’t have to be as they have always been. General George S. Patton, well known for his leadership style during World War II is quoted as saying, “If everyone is thinking alike, then somebody isn’t thinking.”
Creating a disturbance means being ready to be ridiculed and even hated. Jesus Christ created a disturbance when He came on the scene displaying a different side of God than what the religious leaders of the day were presenting. They painted a picture of God that was cold and indifferent to people. Jesus, on the other hand, expressed God as loving, able to heal, deliver, and transform lives. This did not sit well with the leaders. Jesus was a threat to them. It was this disturbance that led them to ridicule, hate, and on different occasions attempt to trap Jesus with words. When that failed, they plotted to paint him as an enemy of the state with death on the cross as the prescribed sentence. Little did they know that by killing Him they were driving Him to His purpose.
Is there something that you have noticed has never been done and you can do it? Have you found a way to deal with a problem that nobody has ever thought of? Have you grown tired of simply allowing things to continue as is when you know there is a better way? If any, some, or all of the above are true for you, then you are ready to create a disturbance. Creating a disturbance may be termed as rambunctious by some because you are interfering with the status quo and going against the grain of what everyone has termed as normal. Normal is overrated. Abnormal is the new normal. Don’t be afraid to be an anomaly. Remember that small stone creating a disturbance in that large volume of water. Don’t be intimidated by the size of the problem but take the first step you can in the direction of the solution. The small step might be talking to someone about it or writing it down and putting it up somewhere you can see it everyday to build confidence. Whatever that small stone is, it’s time to throw it into the water. It won’t make a disturbance or a difference in your hand; release it!
By Waiyaki M. Waiyaki
To subscribe use the follow button at the bottom right corner.