A Girl of Wisdom desires to make a difference (continued!)

300_21892054715_6421_nRead the following slowly. Let these facts from the United Nations website sink into your mind and heart…

  • Half the world’s population live on LESS THAN TWO DOLLARS per day…
  • Almost 16,000 children die EACH DAY due to poverty- that’s 1 CHILD EVERY FIVE SECONDS…
  • Nearly a BILLION people entered the Year 2000 UNABLE TO READ OR SIGN THEIR NAME…
  • There are approximately 2.2 billion children in the world. 1 BILLION do not have access to SHELTER, CLEAN WATER and HEALTH CARE…
  • 121 MILLION children do not receive EDUCATION…
  • 1.6 billion people – a QUARTER OF HUMANITY – live without ELECTRICITY…

Unbelievable, hey?

To think that there is a girl your age who is starving to death, as you skip your breakfast because you don’t feel hungry or as you throw away the sandwich your mum made you for lunch because you bought something from the school shop instead.

To think that there is a classroom in Uganda filled with 90 students sitting on a dirt floor without any pens or paper, trying to learn basic knowledge, as you groan in despair when you receive your next project.

To think that every day, young girls are sold into abusive slavery, as you worry about what clothes you are going to wear or complain about having to clean your room. It certainly puts things into perspective, doesn’t it? It’s even a bit scary to step out of your comfort zone and put yourself in someone else’s shoes, isn’t it?

The biggest question you may be thinking is, “But what can I do that could really make a difference?” After all, the problems in this world are overwhelming. My response to you, beautiful girl, is, “Take small steps at a time. One act of kindness at a time. One person at a time. It all adds up over a lifetime.”

  • Get together with some friends and together, sponsor a child in a developing country.
  • Organise a fundraising project to raise money for a charity that touches your heart. It could be a charity for children with cancer, refugee students, families of those in prison… there is a page at the end of this book that lists well known international charities.
  • Clean out your wardrobe and pull out all the clothes that are too small for you or you don’t like to wear anymore. Wash them, iron them, fold them and donate them to a charity for homeless people.
  • Over the next two months, buy one or two grocery items each week (packet of pasta, bottle of pasta sauce, tin of soup, box of tea bags etc.). At the end of the two months, you’ll have a bag of groceries to give to a charity group or church group that helps poor people in your community.
  • Do a bit of research- find out what community groups actively help those in need in your town or city and get involved!

Finally, make sure that your parents or another adult is aware of what you are wanting to do. Discuss your ideas with them, listen to their advice and don’t do anything that they do not agree with. So, my fellow Girl of Wisdom, are you ready to change the world… one step at a time… one person at a time?

 “How wonderful it is that nobody needs to wait a single moment before starting to improve the world.”

(Anne Frank, Writer.)

Living a life beyond yourself.

Wednesday 15 August 2012

I have some amazing friends travelling and volunteering in Africa at the moment whilst others are preparing for similar ventures in Asia later in the year. This isn’t the type of tourist holiday where you sit on a beach (although they are good too). Rather, it is a person giving their time and skills to invest in those in poverty.

In Proverbs 31:20 (NCV) a wise woman is described as a person who “welcomes the poor and helps the needy.” I love this verse and it excites me to see it in action in my own life and those around me.

There are many forms of “poor and needy” in this world. There are those who have little in the way of food, shelter and water, while others may be suffering from illness or isolation. It’s not just in Africa and Asia, but in our own communities too. We can all do something to help others, the questions is, what are you doing?

1. Think and pray about what you can do. Think about the skills that you already have- you’ll be amazed at what you are already capable of!

2. What stirs your heart? Homelessness, human trafficking, adult illiteracy…. there are so many!

3. Find volunteering organisations that are known for what they do and have proven that they are trustworthy and effective in helping those in need.

4. Think locally and globally. There are things you can do on a regular basis to help those in need in your community as well as overseas volunteering opportunitiees.

A Girl of Wisdom lives outside of her own needs and desires. She is selfless in her motivation and genuinely wants to see poverty abolished. When she sees the needs that exists in the world, she is moved with compassion to reach out her hand to help.

God uses our human hands to be His helping hands.

Sunday 6th November 2011.

Somtimes when I am sitting in a cafe, I love to people watch. I just sit back with my coffee and watch people walk by the window, wondering who they are, what they do and what is going on in their lives right now.  It is amazing how much you can learn about a stranger by simply taking notice.

The reality is that our world is filled with countless people who need help- and you don’t necessarily need to travel to a developing country to find them. They live on our street, in the house next door… they sit next to us on the bus or train… they are standing behind us at the grocery check-out… they are sitting in front of us in class…they are speaking to us on the phone and aren’t honestly admitting that they are going through a tough time…

Proverbs 3:27 (MSG) says, “Never walk away from someone who deserves help; your hand is God’s hand for that person.” What a beautiful thought- that God desires to use our human hands to be His helping hands in another person’s life!

Give it a go! Pick a day and when you wake up in the morning, ask God to use you to help somebody else that day. Ask Him to open your eyes to see someone in need or to orchestrate an event or conversation with another person that leads into an opportunity for you to help them. Then get on with your day and consciously be on the alert. You will be amazed at how God will answer your prayer!

A Girl of Wisdom is not inward-focused. She is outward-focused. She consciously observes people around her and continually asks God to use her to make a difference in another person’s life.

God wants to use YOUR human hands to be HIS helping hands… will you give Him permission to do so?

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