One day a terrible fire broke out in a forest - a huge woodlands was
suddenly engulfed by a raging
wild fire. Frightened, all the animals fled their homes and ran out of
the forest. As they came to the
edge of a stream they stopped to watch the fire and they were feeling
very discouraged and
powerless. They were all bemoaning the destruction of their homes. Every
one of them thought
there was nothing they could do about the fire, except for one little
This particular hummingbird decided it would do something. It swooped
into the stream and picked
up a few drops of water and went into the forest and put them on the fire.
Then it went back to the
stream and did it again, and it kept going back, again and again and again.
All the other animals
watched in disbelief; some tried to discourage the hummingbird with comments
like, "Don't bother,
it is too much, you are too little, your wings will burn, your beak is
too tiny, it’s only a drop, you
can't put out this fire."
And as the animals stood around disparaging the little bird’s efforts,
the bird noticed how hopeless
and forlorn they looked. Then one of the animals shouted out and challenged
the hummingbird in a
mocking voice, "What do you think you are doing?" And the hummingbird,
without wasting time or
losing a beat, looked back and said, "I am doing what I can."