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What does it mean to me to have made a difference in the world? What am I doing to achieve that change, and how has it been made possible?
When I first saw this question, a song immediately came to mind for me. It is written by a well-know Catholic musician I have seen many youth conferences and gatherings with teens. I even did a sing-along with him once at a national youth conference...gotta love when the teens volunteer the adult leader to get silly n' crazy on stage! ;-)
I believe that each of us can make a difference. There is a quote by Mother Teresa she said when receiving the Nobel Peace Prize. A reporter asked her how can we change the world. Her simple reply? "Go home and love your family." Not all of us are called to great things in the eyes of the world, but the most basic way to make a difference (in the eyes of this humble nun) is to go home and love the people in your family; whom God has placed in your life...whether you always want to or even feel like it or even like them.
So when I hear that, I reflect on how I can make a difference in the world through my relationship with my husband by going home and being love and mercy to him. Second to God and my husband, are being love and mercy in the other relationships in my life: my family of origin, extended family, in-laws, the people I don't necessarily like/get along with, and yes even strangers. We can change the world through lots of active acts of love, no matter how big or how small. Of course I personally have a ways to go, but we can change this world by living out most fully the life and vocation God has given to us. By embracing all the things in our life, and use those opportunities whether big or small as our own unique way to make an impact in this world.
As a Youth Minister, I also find it such a privilege to be able to work to make a difference in the life of young people to help them grow in their personal relationship with Jesus and understand their faith better. I hope and pray that God can use me to reach out to the hearts and minds of a young generation to help draw them closer to His heart. Yes, I'm flawed and make plenty o' mistakes, but it is so rewarding to be able to watch and witness the transformation of a teen as they come to fall in love with Jesus more. There is nothing as awesome as a good talk with a teen on retreat or praying with them over something going on in their life...it's not about me, but what He can do through me to reach others. And in reaching another, in some small way, I trust and believe that I can make this world a little more joyful, peaceful, and loving.
I may never write a book, have 1,000 followers on my blog, or be famous...BUT I can use this one crazy, beautiful life God has given me to reach out to others and make a difference in big and small ways.
So be full of great joy and hope, YOU can make a difference! We are the light of the world not to be hidden but be seen, so go make a difference in this world:)