“Every time someone chooses compassion over indifference, good has triumphed and the world is different.” – Anonymous

This article was written in honor of a dog named Mauro. I think his story is just one of many countless others about the suffering of innocent living beings caused by the cruelty and carelessness of man. But at the same time, it is also a story of kindness and compassion – of people that care for and treat the unwanted with respect and dignity, people that value and treasure life, no matter how it shows up. I feel compelled to talk about Mauro’s story because this point cannot be stressed enough: Even one little act of kindness can make a whole lot of difference in the world. These simple, seemingly small acts are what change the world, in ways you might not even imagine!
What happened to Mauro has deeply touched me because I love animals and hold deep respect and admiration for them. They are living beings, just like the rest of us, and have been given their important, unmistakable place in the world.

Mauro’s story took place a few months ago. He was found in a cardboard box tied with a string to the rail guard on a road in the countryside in Sardinia, Italy. When members of an animal welfare association were notified and went to pick him up, he was only a heap of bones and skin and his body temperature was below 30° degrees. He was brought to a veterinary clinic where he was taken care of. His intestines and some other organs had stopped functioning and he was in severe danger of losing his life.

The staff from the veterinary clinic worked day and night to revive what was left of him and members of the animal association went to visit him regularly, pouring love and positive energy into him whenever they could. His condition little by little improved yet the long period of starvation had taken its toll on his body. In the morning of April, 2nd, his heart stopped beating while being held in the arms of the volunteers.

When I heard about the outcome of Mauro’s story I was overwhelmed with sadness about what had happened to him in the first place and how it had ended. It was deeply upsetting to think about the cruelty and carelessness of this unknown human being, and what it had done to an innocent animal. On the other hand, I couldn’t shake the feeling of amazement, relief and deep gratitude for the powerful signal of love and goodness these people had sent out into world when tirelessly working to save Mauro’s life.

I had followed his story through the regular Facebook updates of the veterinary clinic. Curious about who they were, I researched more about the clinic and was astounded to find that they regularly give of their time, energy and resources freely to help homeless animals in dire straits and emergency situations. I also found out that they help animals in need free of charge.

People like the ones at this clinic are my heroes. They are the silent ones that you don’t hear much about. They quietly give their lives in service to fellow creatures, tirelessly and selflessly, every day, in spectacular ways. They simply act on their compassion and do what is necessary to save a life or make it better.

What people like them actually do – and this is what is so powerful to me – is to declare triumph over suffering, cruelty and whatever is not working in this world, just by doing what they do. They shout victory over indifference and defeat. They might not be able to stop what is going on but their deeds are sending a powerful wave of positive, creative, life-giving energy out into the world. It is the power of love and compassion. The ripple effects of these deeds go a long way.

I am personally convinced that people are going to be motivated to do good in their corner of the world, just by hearing this story. They might not be conscious of the fact that it was this story that triggered their desire to create positive action – it might just be an unexplainable surge of positive energy that encourages and inspires them to also act and not just be bystanders. Yet that energy was released by that story.

There’s this vision I sometimes have in my mind of people turning on a little light in their corner of the world when they act on their compassion. Looking at the big picture, there are thousands, millions, billions of little lights turning on around the globe. Every light has the potential to spark other lights. And slowly but continuously, our globe is lighting up more and more. My friends, this is the power of one single deed of compassion. It is what changes the world!

It’s not always only the big projects, the “important” things taken care of, the showy endeavors to change the world. Granted, they have their unique place – but the better world we all desire is built day by day by these little acts of compassion, too. And it’s so simple: change for the better happens when a human heart allows itself to be touched by a need and responds.

It’s similar to what is described in the adapted version of “The Starfish Story” by Loren Eiseley. A boy was throwing one starfish after the other back into the ocean. When asked what difference he was making since there were countless other starfish on the beach he said, “It made a difference for that one.”

As is the same in Mauro’s story, I believe the respect and compassion for life that was shown by these angels will keep on living and effecting change for the better. They didn’t think he was too insignificant to be rescued, even if there are so many, many more like him. Mauro might not have made it, but what has been done for him was not lost. Besides letting him experience a little touch of heaven and true love before passing into the next life – “making a difference for that one” –, a beam of light has been sent out with the potential to spark many more.

In closing, dear reader, I’d like to leave you with some questions to think about….

Are you willing to "make a difference for that one"? What little act of compassion and kindness can you do to turn on a new light on the globe today?

Author's Bio: 

Eva Berger’s mission is to be an encouraging voice for people who aim to make a tangible difference in the world. In 2014 she founded “Positive Impact”, a coaching practice that specializes in supporting individuals and groups to successfully make their personal vision of changing the world a reality. Before becoming a professional coach she worked as a full-time volunteer and missionary for eight years in various locations in Italy. Find out more about Eva Berger and Positive Impact Coaching here: www.positiveimpact-coaching.com
or contact her directly: eva@positiveimpact-coaching.com.