At the End of the World You are Small

If you walk far enough down Phillips Avenue in Rockport, Massachusetts you reach the end of the world. There you stand, surrounded by a rocky coast and deep blue ocean. To the right you can see a light house far along the shore. To the left the coast curves around and a lone house stands tall and strong against the horizon.

You are at the end of the world and you feel so small. So appropriately small. The world is not about you, you are a small person against a massive ocean and sky, against rocks that have been there for centuries and houses that will endure long past when you are gone.

You feel so small and it is so right that you feel small. It’s not about poor self-esteem, or despair. It’s not about feeling useless or not important. It’s just about remembering who you are in this world, and finding strength in things larger than you. 

You stand at the end of the world and small talk fades, you’re lost in the wonder of creation.

At the end of the world you are small. 

It’s Monday morning and the city is waking. Left over garbage from the weekend’s tourists dot the brick sidewalk, unavoidable as you move forward. Street lights are still glowing, now dim against the daylight sky. They have not yet been reset to reflect the lighter mornings and longer days. Shouts of homeless people interrupt your thoughts and life moves forward in robotic fashion.

And you feel so small. So small compared to cities with high rises and brick walk ups, with mass transportation and hurried workers. You feel so small, so appropriately small compared to the big world of cities and the infrastructure that supports them.

You walk through the middle of one of the busiest areas, an area that later will be crowded with business suits and vendors; street ambassadors and tour groups temporarily crowding out the homeless who will reclaim the streets in the evening hours.

You remember who you are in this world, a human with a finite life but an infinite soul. Small yet significant to the God who made you, who fashioned you in your inmost being. You are secure in the healthy realization that you are small, but you are loved.  

Where do you feel small? Not in the context of feeling demeaned, rather in the sense of knowing the world is big and it’s not all about you? 










5 thoughts on “At the End of the World You are Small

  1. Ah, Marilyn, one thing I love about the summer is your Rockport posts. The pictures are so special. The ocean for me has always brought my life into perspective, making me realize that, as you write, it’s not about me. God is Jehovah Shammah, the God who is There, in the beauty and majesty of His creation, but also there in the city where so many needy people live and work. There with you, in you, even in that gray cubicle.


  2. Beautiful pictures. Reminds me of Bar Harbor, Maine, where we honeymooned and where we returned 10 years later, pregnant with our 4th child, for a 2nd honeymoon. So beautiful!


    1. I love the coast of Maine, too. I lived and worked there for a year after college, so many years ago. I love that you took a second honeymoon when you were pregnant with your fourth child, a perfect time for it.


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