If you’ve been watching the news or listening to the radio then you know about the Parkland shooting that happened a month ago. The students at Stoneman Douglas High School have been speaking up about changing gun laws and not only have they been heard- but the entire country has decided to respond. A movement began by high school students and spreads because of high school students. Just this week, the entire country took part in protests and held assemblies on anti-bully and gun awareness. America can’t stop talking about an extremely controversial issue because a group of kids not even old enough to vote have chosen to stand up for something they believe in.

I can’t help but be inspired by these students. This post has nothing to do with gun laws so don’t worry. I wanted you all to be inspired by them too. I wanted you to see that no matter how young, no matter how old, you have a voice and it cannot be silenced.

Growing up, I always felt like no one could hear me besides the people I was around. Social media didn’t exist until I was in middle school so my world was Florence, KY, and whoever I could reach by the phone. Embarrassing story time: I wanted to be a famous singer when I was little so I used to open my bedroom window and sing at the top of my lungs hoping someone who heard me on the street happened to be a music producer and wanted to put me on Disney Channel (people- I lived in the suburbs in FLORENCE). That’s how it was. There was no YouTube to post videos on (thank goodness), there was no Twitter to start a movement. I felt so silent and hopeless.

That is not an option anymore. I am writing to you all on a platform that would have been impossible for me ten years ago. I will later be posting on platforms to get your attention to read this post. I am raising my voice and so can you. You are not silenced. You are not alone. People are waiting to hear your voice and what you have to say.

One of my favorite verses is Proverbs 31:8-9: “Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves, for the rights of all who are destitute. Speak up and judge fairly; defend the rights of the poor and needy.” 

You matter and someone needs the wisdom you have. Feel that urge to talk to a co-worker or someone at school? Do it. That person was waiting to hear from you. I can’t tell you how many times I have simply walked away from God telling me to just say “hello” to someone because I was too scared. I know I missed so many opportunities to give someone hope because I didn’t use my ability to speak and to listen.

If you are reading this post, you have a voice. Speak up for those who cannot. Speak up for the lost, the hopeless, the ones who are in great need. Speak up for your faith and your beliefs. Life is too short to stay in the shadows.

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