When it comes to making a positive difference in the world, sometimes young people say ‘What can I do – I’m just a kid!’
The answer to that is LOTS! Kids from all around the world have made a difference to the other people’s lives and continue to do so right now. So don’t think just because you are young that you cannot make the lives of others better. God’s Word says in 1 Timothy 4:12 “Let no one despise your youth, but set the believers an example in speech and conduct, in love, in faith, in purity.” (NRSV) God is saying to you that even though you might be young, you can make a difference for Him in your community!
In this series we explore 4 ways Jesus changed the world around him and we know you can do so too 🙂
2) Challenging Cultural Practices:
A “cultural practice” is something we do as part everyday life – it is something that becomes the normal in our community. Unfortunately there are plenty of normal day-to-day things we do which can hurt and exclude other people. Things like leaving girls out of sports teams because ‘girls can’t play cricket’, or not playing with the new kid because they are wearing a turban or headscarf, or maybe we tease some kid because everybody else is teasing them. But if we love God and are trying to live like God wants, then we need to stop doing these things and even fight for change in our community.
That is what young Anoyara from India is doing! Sadly, Anoyara as a young girl was sold by her mother because they were so poor. She was sold to a cleaner and instead of going to school had to clean houses all day for her owner. Unfortunately this happens a bit in very poor places like India, but Anoyara, now a teenager, is fighting to stop people selling their children. She is saying that this is no longer okay to do – this normal thing is unfair to children and hurting them. She is using her voice to speak up for those kids getting hurt, and has managed to stop 100’s of kids being sold and has also reunited a lot of kids with their families.
Just being a kid didn’t stop Anoyara and it won’t stop you! God has given you a voice so be strong for other kids and use it. How can you do this at school? Perhaps you can stand up for kids being teased or be a friend for those who are different to everybody else. What about in your community? What about in your church? What things in our community need to be changed to make everybody enjoy life?
Here is Anoyara helping to educate some mothers in an Indian village (image from Save the Children)