It was probably in my University days that I came across this piece of writing.
One man wakes, awakens another
Second one wakes his next door brother
Three awake and rouse a town and turn the whole place upside down
Many awake will cause such a fuss
It finally awakes all of us
One man awakes with dawn in his eyes, truly then it multiplies.
The background of this poem is referring to a period of time known as the Great Awakening, but when I read it, it spoke to me. Sure, I just still a pretty young Christian then, but this poem gave me such… faith. Faith that one person can make a difference. Call it youthful arrogance or youthful ignorance, or simply youthful faith. But I felt I could, nay, needed to have some significance in my life.
And I suppose I have made many choices in my life, trying hard to make a difference.
I can’t say for sure about the people who have passed through my life. Sometimes I get “faced” with certain words I have spoken in the past… and it’s strange how my words can have such effect on people years down the road. Both for good and bad. A while back, someone told me something I said to him, oh, about 10 years ago. Seriously. 10 years. I can hardly tell you what I had yesterday for lunch. And I naively thought at first he wanted to thank me for inspiring him (why else would you remember something for 10 years? Or so I thought…) but instead I was left pretty awkward as I was confronted with something I apparently said. Did I mention it was 10 years ago that I said it?
Oh man. Of course I apologized for that thoughtless thing I said. (Till today, I still cannot recall when I said it or the context of it.)
I know words have the power of life and death. I have no excuse, and what is wrong is wrong… save to say back then, I was still a youth. Still passionate about making a difference. And maybe a little harsh with people whom I feel is not as passionate.
And now, I am older, and wiser. I think. Haha… And with age comes a renewed understanding of the poem.
Sure I can be hardnosed about my beliefs. So many seem to be these days, judging by the virulent outpourings in blogs and on my Facebook newsfeed and Twitter feeds.
Or perhaps… just perhaps… we can change one person at a time. With positivity instead of negativity. With truth instead of half-baked lies and perceptions. With love instead of virulence. With rubbing out offences instead of rubbing it in. With compassion instead of contempt.
And it has to start top-down. To show kindness.
As a leader, to those working for us and with us.
As a daughter or son, to our parents.
As a friend, to other friends (and maybe even foes).
And as a parent, to our kids. To show them kindness that they might show kindness to others. Kind of like paying it forward (if you caught the movie), but instead a random act to a random stranger, to make a intended act to an intended person. And who knows? Maybe it would be of great effect.
Have a Talkative Thursday post? Where you can pour out on anything (the antithesis of Wordless Wednesdays, if you will), and feel free to link up!