What are Your Small Smooth Stones? There is a debate currently, between one of the world’s richest men and an education research professor. One name you’ll recognize, and the other you won’t. Bill Gates, through his philanthropic foundation, has invested billions of dollars in education experiments in order to reform America’s education system. Gate’s billions, reforms and efforts have not gone unnoticed by New York University research professor, Diane Ravitch. Diane has been called Bill Gates’ chief adversary when it comes to education reform. She doesn’t like what he’s doing, or how he’s doing it. It’s likely that nothing and no one wants to stand in the way of a man and his billions, especially in the name of improving our children’s education. However, Diane Ravitch, author of the bestselling book, The Death and Life of the Great American School System is doing just that. If you’d like to read about the issue, click here.
This post is less about the debate between Gates and Ravitch, and more about the profound response Ravitch has to Bill Gates. It’s a lesson for every writer, every speaker, every teacher. When asked what is was like to be referred to as “Bill Gates’ chief adversary,” she replied,
“Gates has his billions, but I have my words.”
This a David and Goliath story, with words being Ravitch’s small smooth stones. Ravitch reminds us that our words have enough power to get the job done. We may not have much, or what our competition has, but we do have our words. And our words are enough. In Ravitch’s case, she researches and then writes and teaches the findings. She feels compelled by the evidence to stand for what she believes, no matter her foe. This is commendable.
We must do the same. We are accountable to God and to human kind to use our words to fulfill God’s calling. Whatever platform we have, be it stage, blog, book or cell phone, we can use our words to transform our environment. When odds are stacked as high as rejection letters, when the Bigger and Better seem to be winning, when your small smooth stones feel puny in our pocket, we must not despair! They have their advantages, but we have your words. We will use them. Speak them. Deliver them. With faith.
Thanks Diane, for your small smooth stone, selected with just enough weight and executed with just enough impact to shatter our feelings of insufficiency.
We have our words, and they are enough.