Are you making a difference? In a small town, Miss Jones had the distinction of being the oldest resident. When she died, the editor of the local paper wanted to print an article in her honor, he couldn’t think of a thing to write. She’d never done anything terribly wrong; no drunkenness or nights in jail…but she had never done anything significant either. So…he called the funeral director, but he was facing the same challenge in deciding an epitaph for Miss Jones’ gravestone.
Frustrated, the editor decided to assign the job of writing up a small article and an epitaph for the gravestone to the first reporter he saw. He stepped out of his office and ran into the sports editor and immediately gave him the assignment. As a result, in a rural cemetery, there is a tombstone which reads, “Here lie the bones of Nancy Jones, For her life held no terrors. She lived an old maid. She died an old maid. No hits, no runs, no errors.” Apparently, she didn’t make much of a difference.
The feeding of the 5000 is the only miracle of Jesus that is recorded in all four Gospels. It is a remarkable account! Jesus was given five loaves and two fish by a young fellow. He took this meagre fare, blessed them, broke them and fed 5000 men plus women and children. Following lunch His disciples picked up 12 baskets of leftovers (Matt. 14:15 – 21, Mark 6:35 – 44, Luke 9:12 – 17, John 6:4 – 1).
Fantastic miracle! But don’t miss the significance of the young man who gave Jesus the loaves and fish. I can only imagine the impact that this event had on the generous young lad. He would never forget how the Lord had used his humble gift. He had made a difference!
A friend of mine, whom I hold in high esteem, came to visit me not so long ago. He is a retired professional who spent his life working with people. We don’t get to chat but perhaps two or three times a year – sometimes even less. But the encounters are always warm, friendly and spiritually meaningful. In our most recent encounter he surprised me by saying, “I consider my life to be of little or no significance. I haven’t really made any difference on my way through or touched and changed lives like you have.”
It was an emotional moment for both of us as I quietly disagreed. I told him, “There has never been a time that we’ve met that you have not encouraged me in some meaningful fashion…you’ve made a significant difference in my life!”
God made us all different, so that we can make a difference!
FAITH & REFLECTION