I’ll never forget when I attended David’s Tent last year. After listening to various speakers communicate about justice, I was filled with an overwhelming passion to see the injustices of the world eradicated. But as I returned home and began to speak to the people around me, they didn’t seem to share the same passion. The flame that was ignited seemed to flicker and fade. I continued to read the news, but the problem now seemed to be magnified in its intensity. Suddenly I had this sinking feeling… and I thought to myself: why does it feel like I’m the only one who cares about this?
To help gather my feelings, I delved deep in the Word to discover an answer of hope. I read Matthew 9:35-38, where we find that Jesus also relates to the feeling of being the only one who cares. Jesus’ ministry was about transforming lives and yet at times He felt deep compassion overwhelm Him. Why? Because Jesus saw the people following Him were desperately in need for someone to lead and care for them – they were weary, burdened and lost for direction. Jesus turned and shared this with His disciples and shared, but was met by a lack of people able or even willing to help.
Maybe like me, you’ve read this and you can relate to how Jesus felt. You see the great need for justice in the world, and your heart is filled with deep compassion to respond. But what do you do when you’re the only one that seems to care?
1. The power of prayer
Jesus’ response to seeing the world’s great need for salvation and healing was to encourage the disciples to pray for God’s intervention. Before we do anything, our very first response is to seek God. God is a faithful and just God, and He cares deeply for His creation. When we pray and seek God, we invite Him to intervene and respond. We are also humbly reminded of the power of God’s plans and perspective above our own.
2. Do your reading
If there’s something in particular that you’re passionate about, it’s important that you have a well rounded, in-depth understanding of it. By reading around the subject of interest, it will help you gain more knowledge on how to respond effectively. Browse your local library or check out blogs that may contain recommended readings.
3. Connect to a community
It’s hard to walk alone, especially when the people around you don’t share the same depth of passion you do. When you’re in a community with like-minded people, they can encourage and inspire you to do just that. What local communities or initiatives can you connect with? Your local church, a Just Love group at university or the We Are Tearfund community are all great place to start. Even if the immediate people around you are disinterested, more often than not there is a whole host of people online who are the opposite and you can form an online community!
4. Action looks like the first step
This doesn’t need to be a big thing; you can always start small. What’s one thing you can do right now to live justly? Maybe it can be changing your lifestyle, or using your social media platform to raise awareness, or even doing something active in your community. By taking one easy step, it will help you begin your journey of tackling the injustices in the world. As the old-age saying goes, the first step is always the hardest. Plus, you never know who you could be inspiring to follow in your initiative.
Above all, don’t give up. It can be hard at times when you feel like you’re the only one who cares. Whatever you may be passionate about, do not underestimate the power of your voice.
If history has taught us anything, is that the spark of change always starts with one person who is willing to ignite it.