Make a Wave
by Teresia Smith
Have you ever had the chance to toss a pebble into a lake? As a child, it was fun to watch the ripples from that pebble toss. What if multiple people threw pebbles at the same time? Those ripples may combine and become bigger. Then the bigger ripples may join others and become a wave. “Everything we do, even the slightest thing we do, can have a ripple effect and repercussions that emanate. If you throw a pebble into the water on one side of the ocean, it can create a tidal wave on the other side.” Victor Webster.
Every time we perform any action, positive or negative, it creates a ripple that surges out into the larger current of life and meets other ripples. The things we choose to do, the words we choose to say, the moods and attitudes we choose to display- all acreate ripples in the waters in which we exist. Every day we make hundreds of decisions on how to act or react, to get involved or ignore, and many times we don’t give much thought to those pebbles we toss. However, those pebbles start ripples and those ripples then wobble across the pools of life and become circles of influence.
“Don’t underestimate the ripple effect of what you do. These kinds of actions have toppled empires.” Leila Janah. The ripples we send out can wash up on the coastlines of other people’s lives. Sometimes your ripples are hardly noticed. Other times, the ripples are larger, or they combine with other waves sent by other people, until they start to sink boats. It’s not just us tossing pebbles. Everyone else is tossing pebbles at the same time and sometimes, all of our ripples join and create a wave. We must be careful with our pebbles that we don’t cause harm. We can decide if we will send positive or negative ripples out into the current of life. “Just as ripples spread out when a single pebble is dropped into water, the actions of individuals can have far-reaching effects.” Dalai Lama. If I choose to yell at someone, participate in gossip, or even make a rude comment, I am sending negative ripples out. However, if I choose to be kind, reach out and help someone in need, express my gratitude, or get involved to help solve a problem, I am sending out positive ripples. I don’t get to control how big the ripple becomes or how far it goes. I can only control if the ripple I send is positive or negative.
Many times we may never know the outcomes of the ripples we send out. But there are times we can consciously choose to join with others who are tossing pebbles and allow our ripples to become a wave of change. There is a great need here in Jackson County for help and support of victims of domestic violence and sexual assault. Domestic violence and sexual assault has far reaching impacts and affects everyone in a community. Crisis Services of North Alabama Jackson County Office needs volunteers who are willing to work alongside us toward a better tomorrow. Volunteers are needed to canvas the county distributing information on our services, gain access to community groups for speaking engagements to spread our message, gather toiletries and small household items and maintain our donation room, help with fundraising, and other areas.
At the end of the day, we should realize that we all swim in the same waters that we send ripples across and we must choose our pebbles wisely and toss them gently, with mercy and kindness. Crisis Services of North Alabama offers free and confidential services to victims of sexual assault and domestic violence. You may reach our Jackson County office at 256.574.5826 or our 24/7 HELPline at 256.716.1000. You are not alone.