Sometimes I feel totally overwhelmed by the violence, greed and injustices that happen all over the world and I can question whether we’re making a difference in the world at all. Campaigning gives us the power to make an impact and change policies, transforming the world around us.
But why is that important as a person of faith?
Our God is a God of justice — but we hear this so often in church, it’s easy to forget what it actually means and how world-shattering it really is.
Remember the radical life Jesus lived. He died embodying justice. At the beginning of his ministry, he proclaimed: “The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to set the oppressed free, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favour.” Luke 4:18–19.
Jesus’s entire ministry was set out to bring hope, liberation and inclusion to those who were marginalised and down trodden. The Church has always and always will be a community called to shout out for justice, seeking and demanding peace and righteousness where it is lacking, speaking out for those who have no voice.
Have we forgotten how Christ transformed people’s lives? He challenged the systems and structures that created injustice. He set the captives free. He brought sight to the blind.
Have we forgotten to celebrate the messianic hope that he came to fulfil, all of the promises of the Old Testament that are intrinsically linked to the justice that defines God’s kingdom?
The Christian faith is good news that demands a response. In the fragmented world in which we live, we’re still called to proclaim this good news and to challenge the systems that keep people in poverty.
Let us be the generation that grasps hold of this hope, to be the people who turn up and take responsibility to build a better world.
One of the biggest gifts we have today is our voice and the freedom to use it; while our political system may not be perfect, we have the freedom to speak out against poverty and injustice, whether directly with our politicians or by sharing the latest petition on Facebook and Twitter. You can draw attention to injustices that trap people in poverty, you can tell companies what you think about their practices, you can tell the government to change and you can encourage others to get involved.
The Church is a community called to shout out for justice, seeking and demanding peace and righteousness where it is lacking. What an amazing opportunity we have, living in a country where we have freedom to use our voices to speak out on behalf of those who don’t.
I am what Christian Aid calls a ‘local lobbyist’. This means I talk to my MP regularly about issues of justice and poverty, hoping to build a relationship with them that will help change the world around us.
You, along with thousands of others, can help us transform the policies that in turn transform people’s lives, bringing joy and hope. So why not become a local lobbyist and use your voice to help those who don’t have one?