There was a song sung decades ago by Three Dog Night called One Is The Loneliest Number. Of course we talk these days about the importance of having people in our lives, those who care about us and not feeling alone.
However, there are also regular challenges and exhortations from preachers, experts and motivators to combine our efforts with others, do something BIG and create a movement that will change the world somehow. And all of that has its place and purpose.
But sometimes I think we need a few more reminders about what just ONE person like us can do to initiate change, genuine transformation and long-term impact. One isn’t necessarily lonely.
Perhaps it borders on trite or cheesy but the picture of a rock thrown into the water and the corresponding ripples created by that single rock still makes the point.
One action, comment or decision can have results that are both big and lasting for years even generations to come. They ripple beyond that one choice.
I like the picture of a giant domino display, you know the ones very disciplined people set up over dozens of square feet of space using all sorts of twists, turns, rises and falls for the final result.
Once their preparation is completed, however, what starts the process? The designer knocks over one domino and the rest just happens. Hundreds, if not thousands, of dominoes begin to fall at a rapid pace, initiating a fascinating, often beautiful display of motion, color and flare.
You see, our one action today, tomorrow or the next day – a word of encouragement, an act of kindness, a listening ear or hundreds of other possibilities – could be that first domino in the life of someone. It could be the one domino that leads to another falling, another after that and then hundreds or more after that in a family, office, community or neighborhood.
But if we don’t knock it over, think of what might be missed or never happen? You see, we can all be that first domino no matter our past, present, limitations or struggles. We just need to have our eyes and ears open. If you’re a person of faith, you might listen for that whisper or quiet voice saying Do it now. Whatever, don’t miss out. Don’t stay paralyzed. Knock one over – today.