You can make a big difference, whether you realize it or not!
There’s a tiny little voice inside my head that says things like:
- you aren’t good enough
- you don’t have anything to offer
- you can’t make a difference
- why bother?
I wouldn’t really admit that to many. After all, few of us really ever want to concede our lives aren’t perfect, that we aren’t perfect. But that voice tells me I’m not sometimes, and when I listen to it I become paralyzed at the thought of putting myself out there and of trying to reach out, participate, and become involved.
When that happens, when I close myself away, I’m not living. I’m only existing, and what good is that?
My husband, daughter, and I participated in PurpleStride St. Louis today. It’s the first time we’ve been a part of PurpleStride, an event to raise funds and awareness for pancreatic cancer. Years ago, I volunteered for PanCAN.org, but I haven’t been involved in ages.
The bitter, hopeless part of me often wants to sit back and not be a part of anything. How could I make a difference? I wonder ‘what’s the point?’ We aren’t going to cure cancer. We aren’t going to bring back our loved ones.
Allowing those thoughts to guide my actions is no way to live. We are made for more than that. All of us are. When I start feeling insignificant, as if I can’t make a difference, I remind myself of four little things.
I’d like you to try to remember these four things, too. They fit for you:
- You are made in God’s image (Genesis 1:27 – So God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them.). This verse isn’t talking about a physical image. We are made in God’s spiritual image. God is love (1 John 4:8 – Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love.). You are love. When you act in the spirit of love, you are acting in the spirit of God.
- You have a gift! (1 Peter 4:10 – Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms.). Whether you recognize it or not, you have at least one thing within you that can help someone else. There was a time I thought I didn’t have a gift, that I had nothing to offer. I saw those with gifts as those dynamic personalities that made people sit up and pay attention. Singers, musicians, poets, artists – they were the ones gifted. I’ve found my gift in my love for Christ and my desire to talk about Him to other women. You will find your gift, too.
- When you step out of your comfort zone and connect with others, God is there, too. (Matthew 18:20 – For where two or three gather in my name, there am I with them.) Now, I totally believe God is still with us when we’re all alone locked up in our rooms, but think about this: If you are love and each of those other people is love and all of that love comes together to work together…wow, what power!
- Christ lives in you! (Galatians 2:20 – I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.) Whether you realize it or not, Christ is in you. When you allow Him to lead, you will find motivation, encouragement, hope, and an indescribable peace. Plus, isn’t it cool that you’re never alone? Together, the two of you can do big things!
Remembering these four small things allowed me to get up and join in, and I’m so glad I did. By setting my feelings of unworthiness aside, I can make a difference. Coming together with strangers from all over, all of whom have been affected by cancer, helped me understand that these events are not just about money. They aren’t only about finding a cure for cancer which, of course, is important. They are about hope – hope for early detection, hope for pain management, hope that the lives of our loved ones meant something, hope that our lives mean something. And they’re about love.
*All scripture in this post comes from the New International Version from Biblegateway.com.
Pancreatic Cancer Ribbon Photo Source