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Tag Archives: Choose To Make A Difference

Make a difference the Glasgow way.

Make a difference

Make a difference

Sometimes the problems our world is facing seem so complex and multi-layered that overwhelm and paralysis set in – as an individual, what on earth can I do that would make a difference?

Not a very cheery place to start this week, but let me expand a little. Famine, terrorism, complex political wranglings, injustice, social breakdown. All have been in the news this past week. And all are subjects that can lead to a numbing and mental shutdown at their extent and ghastliness. Sometimes the temptation is to switch off to it all because it is all too big, too complex – we feel utterly powerless to do anything of any use.

And yet.

Sitting alongside the dark events in the world are little vignettes of hope.

At the weekend, I took part in a community event that, when pitted against the monster of social injustice, seemed almost entirely inconsequential. But there were lots of us who worked together as a team, each person contributing their unique skills, enthusiasm, and energy. None of us on our own could possibly have done all that was required to make the event a success. And yet each person working as part of a much greater whole created something collectively that brought ripples of blessing and generosity bobbing outwards into several areas of need within our immediate world.

Last Friday saw the fundraising mega machine that is Comic Relief. Tens of millions of pounds were raised to help many in desperate need in the UK and Africa, including those affected by the current horrific famine. Again, watch the stories of human suffering, and the need is utterly overwhelming. What difference can I possibly make? But recognise that no man is an island, that we are all part of this world, and we work better together, and each of us is empowered to do what we can. Those millions raised consist of many, many single contributions of individuals moved to do their small part.

And yesterday, a little reminder of the difference one person can make to your day. Whilst walking through the centre of town, I encountered a busker seeking to earn a few quid singing. He was very good, and alongside him, a young business man had started dancing, watched and cheered by his business colleagues. Smart suited and smart shoed, he pulled off some nice moves in the middle of the street, purely for fun. Then a young woman joined in, and two blokes in anoraks.

For no reason at all, except the enjoyment of the dance.

At 9 in the morning.

I love Glasgwegians. I love the human spirit at it’s most free.

I smiled broadly as I walked past, and noticed the same effect on other passers-by. All these be-suited office workers, business people, delivery folk – I watched their faces shift from single-minded-Monday-morning focused-seriousness to a broad smile of enjoyment at the nonsense in the street.

We each of us have it in us to make a difference. Sometimes it will feel of so little consequence that it is hardly worth bothering about.

But who knows this week, you might be just the person to meet a need – be it a smile, a word of encouragement, a helping hand, a strong shoulder, or a few quid. Each of us can choose to do what we can to make a difference, knowing that together, real change is possible.

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