Stand Up, Speak Out.

As part of World Vision ACT:S leadership council I read a Bible study on the book of Acts and wrote a reflection for week 5 of it.  You can see the original page of my reflection here. You can download the six-week Bible study here.

ACTS + CALLING Reflection: Stand up, Speak out



A reflection on ACTS + CALLING Week 5, by Julie Smith, Elon University

I first learned about child soldiering while watching the Invisible Children documentary in high school. It frightened and shocked me to think that children, ones who have already suffered the loss of family and friends, are then abducted and forced to commit violent crimes. I was overwhelmed; but instead of doing something about it, I sat back. I thought that no one would listen to me.

What if, in Acts 16, Paul had done the same? What if he had shied away from helping the slave girl, convinced he couldn’t possibly make a difference? In that case, the occult spirit would have kept its hold on her, and her owner would have continued to exploit her. We would not have the story we have today.

Acts 16 proves we cannot stay silent about these types of issues. Even though Paul was just one person, he changed the girl’s life. We can do the same. We may feel small or insignificant, but what we do really matters.

Thankfully, after a few years, I have become passionate about fighting injustice and no longer give up so easily. In college, I got involved in the IC chapter on campus, participating in walks and raising money. When I realized I had not been using my voice, I wrote my elected officials about Senate Bill 1067, the Lord’s Resistance Army Disarmament and Northern Uganda Recovery Act of 2009. After attending Urbana in December 2009, I became an avid supporter of the Human Wrong Initiative against child slavery, as well as the Children Protection Compact Act.

Through our words and deeds, we can raise awareness and change legislation to fight the injustice of the world. So I encourage you to stand up and speak out. Even if you feel it won’t matter – it will. Look at Paul: he was an individual who made a difference to that girl and freed her from slavery.

Your actions do matter. You can save a life.


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