When I say “ripples in the lake” what do you visualise? A young lad standing by the lake throwing stones in? Probably. That’s what most people would see. But not me. Not after today.
Early this morning I sat by a mirror like lake. You could see the sand and sea weed clearly through the water. You could see the reflection of the gulls and cormorants flying above. It was still. It was peaceful. It was beautiful. And the lake was mine, mine alone.
Occasionally a ripple would start circling outwards, washing away the images from above and the view below. These ripples were small quivering movements. They didn’t come from the shore. They came from within. A fish would kiss the surface of the water, impacting the world above.
Bigger ripples punched the lake. Their influence much larger, lingering longer, reaching further, turning stillness into widening waves. These also came from within. This was fish diving up from below, spiralling through the air before belly flopping backing into normality.
The ripples impact, influencing, shaking, changing the world of water before me were not from external forces like little boys with pebbles or boats speeding by. The ripples came from within.
Life is full of ripples. Tiny ones we miss to huge waves of ripples that threaten to capsize our life. Some come from without – like the Global Financial Crisis, earthquakes, changing governments, a new CEO at our work, digital tv and iPhones. Like boys with stones or speeding boats we have no control over these, they come, they send waves through our world, they impact and change our lives.
Some ripples begin within. Within an organisation, within a church or community, within a family or within ourselves. It maybe as simple as a fish kissing the sky or as big as a fish jumping out of water. Ripples are caused when something unusual, something different happens. Someone makes a change, stands up for something, argues, riots, loves, forgives, lets go, arrives, leaves, withdraws, praises.
Ripples aren’t always bad. Ripples aren’t always good. They are just part of life. They add mystery and excitement and beauty to life. A lake that is always still is simply a boring mirror of missed opportunities. A lake, a life with ripples can be a beautiful thing.
I realised, as I sat and watched the beauty the inside fish made through rippling the glassy water, that each of us can send ripples from within. We can impact and influence those around us from wherever our position is within an organisation, community, church or family. We can send a wave of change outwards that will affect those around us.
We can’t control ripples that results from external actions but we can control the ripples we create from within. We can start ripples of love, encouragement, faith, kindness and forgiveness.
Has someone sent a ripple of kindness your way recently? How did it make you feel? Have you circled that outwards to someone else?
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