The Butterfly Effect

28 Jul

My Take

DiVoran Lites

Author, Poet and ArtistHave you ever heard of the butterfly effect? (with reference to chaos theory) It’s the notion that a butterfly fluttering in Rio de Janeiro could change the weather in Chicago. In other words small actions can have big results.

Last night, Nan’s mom and I went to the fifth grade chorus performance at her school. Nan had invited me and I usually tell her mom I’ll pick her up, but this time, I put it on the calendar and forgot about it until practically the last minute. I jumped in the car and ran over there and Nan’s Daddy was doing some computer work. He sat and talked to me about his hopes and dreams for the children. He and his wife are having their fifth child in a few months. They’ve really spread them out. The first one (a boy) was born about twenty-four years ago. Dad was hoping for a boy this time because boys are easier to raise. I said I was hoping for a girl, ‘cause I think girls are easier. It was none of my business, though. Instead of arguing, he said maybe a girl would be best. I wasn’t trying to persuade him. He said Nan and her mom would probably enjoy a girl since their other daughter is grown and gone. It seemed as if that short positive conversation opened a new thought for him – the flutter of a butterfly’s wing.

When the mom and I got to the concert, we sat down front so Nan could see us when she went by. Every kid in the group wore black pants, a white shirt, a turquoise satin cummerbund, and a matching bow tie. Nan gave us a big smile and a wave.

While we waited for the concert to begin, Nan’s mother said she didn’t think she’d put Nan in chorus next year. I had envisioned a whole string of years of chorus and all the friends, trips, and new experiences they would entail for Nan, plus thinking about how singing and playing music is for people. Again none of my business. But Mom wanted to talk so I ventured a question about whether Nan wanted to go to chorus next year. She said she’d ask her. That gave me freedom to tell how much our children enjoyed music in school and what a nice bunch of kids they met. I wanted a little to persuade this time. When I said they got to go on trips and do fun things, that clinched it. “She can go if she wants to,” Mom said.

Upon such small encounters, ones we’re not even looking for, lives can drastically change — the flutter of butterfly wings.

Here’s my paraphrase of Hebrews 10:24

Don’t give up the habit of meeting together with one another. Be concerned for one another with a sincere heart and sure faith. Accept Christ’s atonement so that there are no guilty consciences. Omit resentment and judgment. By example, gently inspire and encourage each other to do well in their decisions.

What do you understand that passage of scripture to mean?

By DiVoran Lites

By DiVoran Lites

3 Responses to “The Butterfly Effect”

  1. Linda Lewis August 4, 2014 at 7:43 pm #

    You’re a good friend, DiVoran.


  2. Bill July 28, 2014 at 8:29 am #

    Really great post DiVoran. You are right, we never know how our small encouragements will help that other person.


  3. Louise Gib son July 28, 2014 at 7:47 am #



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