Speaking up for the poor

Image: Speaking up for the poor

A student's faith gives her the passion to speak to politicians about justice.

Are you a follower of Jesus?

What does that mean for you to say you follow Jesus?

I believe a large part of being a follower of Jesus is sharing God’s amazing love with others. As Christians, we desperately want to tell people about Jesus. But also, God wants us to be a shining light, showing people what His love looks like. So how can we do that? I think one way we can practically share God’s love with others, is through caring for the poor, helping those in need, and speaking up against injustice. It is so evident throughout the Bible that God wants us to care for those in need. He doesn’t want us to just tell people God loves them, but also to show them God’s love! Here are just three of the many verses from the bible, which show us this:

“Dear children, let us not love with words or speech but with actions and in truth.” (1 John 3:18)

“Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves, for the rights of all who are destitute.” (Proverbs 31:8)

“The only thing that counts is faith expressing itself through love.” (Galatians 5:6b)

How do we love with actions and in truth?

How do we speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves? How do we express our faith through love?

There are so many ways in which we can do these things! Personally, God has given me a passion for caring for the poor and fighting against modern-day slavery. It is important for us to raise money and give financially to the poor. But we also have a very powerful tool which we can use to fight for justice. And that is our voice!

I strive to share God’s love with others - one way I do that is by getting involved with Micah Challenge. Through this campaign, I have been able to do some amazing things:

  • I've written to, and met with politicians, asking that they support giving more and better overseas aid.
  • I have gone to Canberra (the capital city of Australia) three times for an annual conference called Voices For Justice, where we go to Parliament House and meet with politicians to speak up for the poor.
  • I have helped organise a Survive Past Five birthday party, which our local Member of Parliament attended,raising awareness of the number of children in developing countries who die before their 5th birthday due to preventable causes.
  • And most recently, Micah Challenges’ giant toilet visited our church! We had members of the church sit on it while holding a sign, and had their photo taken. These photos were then compiled into a video and sent to our local Member of Parliament, asking him to represent us in Parliament, and to encourage the government to allocate more aid money to Water, Sanitation and Hygiene.

For me, sharing God’s love with those in need, means taking the opportunities God gives me through campaigns like Micah Challenge and looking for ways to speak up for those in need. What does sharing God’s love mean for you?

Sarita Hales is a Year 11 student who lives in Sydney. She is involved in local advocacy with the West Ryde Baptist Social Justice Group. 300 participants (including 50 youth) will be attending the 2012 Voices for Justice conference this weekend, lobbying their politicians at Parliament House on behalf of the poor.

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