By Emily Hill
Once our eyes become opened to the injustices in the world, we start to see them everywhere. We are inundated with countless issues and causes, and it is easy to become paralyzed by all the needs around us and lose hope that we can make any kind of difference. That’s a normal feeling, and it’s often necessary to go through those feelings as we process what we’re learning and experiencing. But it can’t stop there.
Living justly is about more than the current cause du jour, and we certainly can’t give our time and energy to every issue. Here are some practical ideas to help you start getting involved:
• Pray and discern where God is leading. More than anything, we must remember that the work of justice is God’s work. He invites us to participate in his work and we can find great joy in doing so, but it’s about God. Be confident that he’ll lead you where he wants you to be involved as you seek him.
• Start small. Our impulse is to want to fix everything, fix it fast, and do it with dramatic effect. But that attitude can overwhelm us and can actually do more harm than good. Small, faithful actions add up. So let’s keep our triumphalist tendencies in check and follow God rather than get ahead of him.
• Go deeper. We can’t expect to make significant change and participate in impactful work if we don’t know the root causes, complexities, challenges, and nuances of the issues we care about. Surface-level knowledge, similar to triumphalist attitudes, can do great harm in the end. As God leads you in the ways he wants you to get involved, take the time to go deeper into those issues and really learn about them so you can have a better long-term impact.
In all these things, be humble and trust God. Rest assured, it’s not all up to you. God is at work and wants us to participate with him because as we give up our lives, we find our greatest joy.
Emily Hill, an advocate for economic solutions to justice issues, founded Stop Traffick Fashion and will soon receive her MA in social justice at Kilns College in Bend, Oregon.