Galatians 5:13 says, "Serve on another in love," and whether you are a religious filled person or not, the idea of serving those around you should not be defined based on if someone goes to church or believes in a higher being. While, for me, the reason why I serve is deeply rooted in faith, for many, it is simply because people enjoy people. The other day, I had a friend refer to me as the "social-justice-driven girl." While I clearly identify as that, it was an eye-opening label. Shouldn't we all strive to be called this? We should all aim to be compassionate and caring people. We should get joy from helping others, rather than being okay with letting injustices occur freely in the world.
I am involved in a national organization called the Bonner Service Leader Program in which we serve with non-profits in the area creating sustainability within the organization. Prior to attending college, I always knew that social justice was important. I would volunteer at soup kitchens, help out at my church, or assist people in the local nursing home. I knew that people needed to be treated equally and that injustices needed to be addressed, but I did not develop the passion that I have for social justice that I do now, after one year at college.
Social justice is not for people who think they are better than others. It is not for only white people. It is not for only faith-filled people. You do not have to be the valedictorian of your class or the class president. You, yourself could be affected first hand by some form of injustice. Being a Social Justice driven individual is for everyone and should be everyone's thing. We all live in the same world and should be working together, rather than working against people.
I am not trying to stir up political drama but with the current election and the racism and lack of care for social justice issues in our country as demonstrated by one candidate, it has made me realize that our world needs to get everyone on the same page when it comes to social justice. It brings me to tears thinking that our potential political leader could be someone who is fueling his actions on such racist and hate filled concepts. We need to focus on the value of humanity, the purpose of community, and the greatness in diversity and uniqueness. It is what makes our country great ALREADY!
So let your call to action be making social justice your passion. Be that person that challenges what is necessary. Promote peace. Encourage diversity. Promote change where change is needed. Grow and learn.