Saturday, March 26, 2011

One less thing.

Tempe Yarn and Fiber is collecting handknits (and crochet items) to help those in need in Japan. To find out how you can participate in this effort, click here.

There is a story of a man who walked along a beach absolutely covered in thousands of starfish who had been somehow trapped on the sand. He came upon a little boy who was hurrying as fast as he could, flinging starfish one by one back into the water. Struck by the insurmountable nature of the problem, and the futile efforts of the boy to help, the man thought to at least help the boy. He said, "You're just exhausting yourself. You can't save them. In the end, thousands of these creatures will die on this beach in spite of your efforts. Nothing you're doing here will matter."

The boy, not pausing for even an instant, threw yet another starfish back into the sea and replied, "It matters to that one!"

Last night I cast on for a cowl that will go to someone in Japan. I was struck by how futile it felt to do something like this. People have lost their lives. Those who survive have lost everything else. What do I think I'm doing? Knitting something? That's it?

I prayed about it. God helped me remember that story, about the boy and the starfish. You know, I can't help everyone in Japan. I can't even truly help one person with anything that really matters. But you know what? One person in Japan is going to have a warm neck this fall and winter because of what I'm doing here. They may have nothing else. But, damn it. Because of some knitter in the US, at least their neck won't be freezing. It will be one less thing for them to worry about and grieve.

Maybe there it is. That's what I'm aiming for. Not to think at all that my efforts will bring help. Certainly not that they'll bring comfort. My highest hope for this project and any other I do is to bring one less thing to have to think about. To one person.

And I think that's the kind of thing that will matter.

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