Friday, July 19, 2013

Lessons from a stranger - By Stacy Superfine

I got this picture in an email from a friend this morning, it not only put a smile on my face, but it reminded me that we are in fact all here for a reason by the one who loves us and created us each in a specific way.

I had an interesting conversation with a complete stranger recently, she wasn’t what society would consider well off, but she was full of spirit. The more she spoke to me, the more I realised that although she didn’t have much, she still had everything she needed. I felt her pain as she spoke about the hard life she’s had, yet she didn’t once complain. She spoke with such enthusiasm and spirit that it just shined through her. It was so refreshing to witness. Although her actions resembled those of a child- due to her disability, her actual age told me otherwise. This disability didn’t stop her in any way. She told me of her accomplishments; of the little things that made her so happy.

It was in this moment that I was reminded that we can’t ignore people in these situations, those going through tough times in a variety of contexts that are so easy to see around us these days. As I write this, Switchfoot’s “Dare you to move” plays in the background which I think fits quite perfectly. In a way I felt that I was being dared to move, to act out what we have been taught. It’s not enough to listen to the stories, or have faith. We need to put this faith into action and see the amazing results.

We’ve each been given so much to make use of, this conversation showed me how lucky each of us are. The stranger I spoke to didn’t care much for the latest trends, not because she wasn’t able to, but because she was well aware that she could still achieve so much with the life she was so grateful she still had.

As our conversation came to a close, it was clear to see that just a simple chat could make the world of difference. How much more of a difference would speaking up on behalf of those suffering, donating towards a good cause, reaching out and helping alleviate the various injustices that are ever so present these days make? It’s not great actions that make the difference, it’s the attitude that we do it in.

The Salvation Army ‘Just Action’ conference on the 18-19 September this year is a great event which aims to ‘rebuild justice together’. Here’s a great opportunity to learn different ways and be inspired to make our society more just and fair for all, to come together and hear real life stories of those who have been living out their faith and turning it into action.

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