Social Justice 101

The Office of Social Justice responds to God’s call to let justice flow like a river, especially as it relates to hunger and poverty.

I want to point you to a resource on their web page. The resource is called Social Justice 101. I encourage anyone who has wondered about the following questions to take a moment to read through the information.

  • Why should Christians be politically engaged?
  • What does the Bible say about justice?
  • What does social justice have to do with my personal faith?
  • What is advocacy and how does it connect to charity?
  • Whose role is it to care for the poor?
  • What are systems and how do they contribute to injustice?

I also want to introduce you to my husband Kris today, who works for World Renew and the Office of Social Justice! He is kind to a fault and has a huge heart for making a difference because of his faith.

Confession: The first time I told Kris that I loved him, I was driving. I got so nervous I ran a red a light. (Don’t tell the police.)

Kris Van Engen is the Congregational Justice Mobilizer for the Office of Social Justice and World Renew. He equips people as they act on Jesus’ instructions to be peacemakers, to do justice, and to prevent the root causes of poverty and hunger.

Kris previously worked for 10 years as a pastor and church ministries director. He and his wife Lisa have two children, Ellie and Josiah.

Contact Kris by email at kvanengen@crcna.org.

Social Justice is not a Bad Word

This is why I think social justice is a beautiful combination of words- not a bad word.

(Please, don’t hate me forever for feeling this way)

 

I believe in practicing social justice because of the Jesus I know.

He came.

He emptied himself for us.

His hands healed, loved, and gave for those on the fringe of society.

 

(Definitions from the Merriam Webster Dictionary)

Social: living in companionship with others or in a community, rather than isolation.

Justice: just, impartial, fair.

 

My Definition:

Social Justice:  kneeling in love offering voice and opportunity to everyone in society.

 

I feel Jesus offered this kind of love to others, including myself.

I practice social justice in the name of Jesus. My heart is moved by my faith.

 

Social justice is a space where people of all faiths can find common ground to begin dialogue, friendship, work together to bring change, and express love to those who need renewal.

 

I have found myself in an in-between space, because people who love Jesus are not always down with the term social justice.

I would be absolutely no where without Jesus. I am the weakest of weak. Jesus is everything to me.

I need to follow my heart that is giving voice to those in need of renewal in the space of a greater community.

 

Since I started writing this blog interesting experiences have occurred. I have had the opportunity to make new friendships with people all over the world. I am finding it humbling that some of my biggest supporters have been friends that verbally express that they don’t practice a certain religion, that they themselves are not religious.  The posts on about proximity are issues, feelings, and resources they can relate to though. Conversation has opened up into sweet spaces of shared love, caring for others.

 

If we truly want people to know the Jesus we say we love in our hearts: they need to meet us in the trenches, where the voiceless are, and in society, where people are. 

 

Social Justice is a good combination of words.

(True dat?  Still not down with me? I don’t want you to worry. I’ll worry for all us through the hours of the night.)