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Ignite the vision

Ignite the vision

Ignite the vision

11 September 2017

Our vision invites us to open our eyes to those around us. Photo: Nina Stehl

By Ben Ward

“Wherever there is hardship or injustice, Salvos will live, love and fight alongside others to transform Australia one life at a time with the love of Jesus” - National Vision Statement

What is our vision?

Our Vision tells us where we are heading.

On the Australia One website we’ve recently published “Australia One - a Year in Review”, which looks at the steps we’ve taken along the Australia One journey so far.

Now, as we embark on the next 12 months of this journey, we look to our Vision to help us as Salvos answer the questions of where we’re heading, what we’re aspiring to be and do, and what our impact looks like.

This Vision is our future as a unified Australia Territory. Over the coming months, we’ll be using this column in others to explore our Vision in depth as we, as Salvos, ignite the Vision and bring it to reality.

Wherever there is hardship or injustice

This first line of the Vision statement, “Wherever there is hardship or injustice”, calls us to immediate action; to go and seek out the places where hardship or injustice exist. 

When thinking about hardship or injustice our minds often turn immediately to the obvious “popular” injustices such as human trafficking, child soldiers and fair trade, or we look to our own social services with programs for the disadvantaged, the homeless, those struggling with addictions, living with a disability, or those that have been impacted by a natural disaster.

However, this line of the Vision Statement calls us to look much deeper than these obvious areas, and closer to our own home. It asks us to take a walk around our neighbourhood, to walk alongside those in our own community, and ask the question, “What is it that you are living with?”

Jesus tells us the story of the Good Samaritan who, while others walked by, stopped to help a man who was in need. The Good Samaritan identified with the man and saw him as his neighbour.

So, who are our neighbours? Those in our social justice departments tell us that our neighbour is “anyone within tangible reach of our compassion”.

We don’t need to go far to find our neighbours. While we seek out hardship or injustice, we need to keep in mind that it is in fact justice that we are fighting for. Social justice is the Kingdom of God on Earth.

Wherever you see the Kingdom of God manifest, you see justice. This could mean advocating to change government policy, or to fight against issues such as those listed above, but it can also be something as simple as offering kindness and friendship to your neighbour, and sharing the love of Jesus with them.

We are each an expert in our own community. Our National Vision Statement calls us to look to the very communities we are in, and seek out and address hardship and injustice.

Ben Ward is the Communications Manager for the Australia One Program Office

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