Have you ever listened to a song and felt or remembered what your life was like the very first time you heard it? This happened to me today when I hit shuffle on a playlist. The song "Set The World On Fire" was blasting through my earbuds. As soon as the first note hit, I had chills. Nearly a decade ago my second grade teacher, Mrs. Wories, introduced this song to me. I remember how awestruck I felt listening to it at the kitchen table, eating an after school snack. Mrs. Wories had emailed my mom this song because it made her think of me and she thought I would enjoy it. Of course I felt honored that my teacher thought of me out of all of her students. It wasn't until years later I realized how truly powerful that song is.
If you haven't heard this song, press play and listen to the lyrics.
Middle School Days:
In eight grade I had Spanish class first period. Since I went to a Christian school, Señora assigned each student a devotional to open class with. I was one of the last students to lead that quarter and I was incredibly nervous. It was one week out and I still had no idea what I was going to say. We had the option to sing a song- which, if you've heard me sing, yikes. That wasn't an option. We could also play a video, write a story or read our favorite Bible verses. One night I stayed up way too late searching the internet for the perfect devotional. What seemed like centuries later, I ended up on YouTube. I found a video of a young girl singing this song and I was shocked, moved and inspired all at once. This song is already powerful. I could not believe that a little girl stood up and sang this (and sang it well!) to her church. She was passionate and I could feel her desire to live out the meaning of the song, as she sang each lyric. At six years old her love for Jesus was showing. Most adults don't have as much courage to sing infant of others, let alone let everyone know that they are willing for Him to use them to make a differnce.
"Set The World On Fire" seems to pop up when I need it the most. My sophomore year of high school I wanted to do something more with my life. I wanted to make a change, I just didn't know how. It wasn't until the end of the school year that I joined the student lead organization called "Food Fight", which aids in the eradication of world hunger. Being a part of Food Fight was amazing. I felt like I was making a difference and serving the Lord. It was the thing I was missing in my life. My junior/ senior year, I was a team leader at my school. It was incredibly stressful trying to pass it with the administration and there were so may days I came home from school and cried. I was frustrated with people not wanting to get involved and make a difference. There were days I wanted to quit and one afternoon I almost did. I had this speech crafted and I was ready to resign. Then, I heard this song. I ran over to my laptop to quickly turn it up. I forgot about this song and it hit home. I related to a verse that I didn't have as strong of a connection with before. Singing the words made me burst into tears. I'm talking full on ugly crying. There was mascara running down my face and it was not pretty.
I realized that this mission goes above and beyond me. I'm in Food Fight acting as someone else's voice. If I was tired and frustrated from having to fight for someone to receive food, I tried to imagine how that person starving to death must feel.
In December this song appeared again. I was debating if I should start Operation Beautiful Nation. I was afraid that people were going to think my idea was lame or childish. I had my mind up that I was not going to run with it and I was going to try and do something else. What that would be, I had no idea. Oh boy am I glad I changed my mind. OBN has impacted my life in ways I didn't think it could and has connected me with so many lovely people across the globe. These lyrics have always stood out to me. Particularly when I was trying to decide what to do. Britt sings:
For months I was praying, asking God to use me to impact others and show His love. My dream is to help eliminate social injustice and I wouldn't have been able to take part in this if I didn't step outside of my comfort zone and believe in myself.
Believing is all I needed. Having my faith and believing in God inspired me to make a difference and to help others. Mrs. Wories believed in me when she sent me that video. She saw that I was capable of creating change (even at a young age!) and I have the power to eliminate world hunger, to impact a stranger's life and for the Lord to use me. All it took was one person seeing something in me to continuously impact my life almost a decade later. Thank you Mrs. Wories for that email all those years ago. Although I have outgrown my lisp and awkward bangs, I have not outgrown this song and I don't think I ever will.
This Week's Challenge:
I ask this: who or what do you believe in? Make it known. Show someone you believe in them. Mail them a card they can keep forever. Send someone a song, Bible verse, a quote, comment on their Instagram photo, etc. Sometimes all we need is for someone to show us a little love. Who knows what your encouragement and faith in that person will lead them to do. Invest in others and pour love into them. Take that thing you care about with all of your heart, and pursue it. You have the power to make a difference and only you can stop yourself from doing so.