1st Prize Winning Speech by Anna Massey
New Delhi 2011

THE LITERAL meaning of the term "empowerment" is to give authority or power to someone or to enable someone. Today the main concept of our youth meeting is "youth empowerment". By this we mean to give authority or power and enable the youth of the christian community. As it is written in 1 Timothy 4:12 "Don't let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers speech, in life, in love, in faith and in purity..." With this we must understand that by being a Christian we must set examples for others irrespective of our age. We must live our lives with love, faith and purity and set an example for others so that they might admire us. We must always obey and respect our father and mother as the Bible says in Exodus 20:12 "Honour your mother and father, so that you may live long in the land the Lord your God is giving you." and even in Proverbs 1:8,9 "Listen, my son, to your father's instruction and do not forsake your mother's teaching. They will be a garland to grace your head and a chain to adorn your neck..." Many quotes like this enable us to live a better life as a youth and even we can motivate others in our society to lead their lives in a more prosperous way. We must always keep in mind the Ten Commandments and lead our lives accordingly. As Christians we must empower ourselves:

by living a moral life
by making moral decisions
by considering JESUS as our moral guide

We must always love and trust our Lord and God Jesus Christ. There's one story called "CALL FROM THE ALMIGHTY". This story involves a pastor of a storefront church. The pastor's church is called the Almighty God Tabernacle. On a Saturday night long ago, this pastor was working late and decided to call his wife before he left for home. It was about 10:00pm, but his wife didn't answer the phone. The pastor let it ring many times. He thought it was odd that she didn't answer, but decided to wrap up a few things and try again in a few minutes. When he tried again she answered right away. He asked her why she hadn't answered before, but she said that it hadn't rung at their house. They brushed it off as a fluke and didn't give it a second thought. The following Monday, the pastor received a call at the Church office, which was the phone that he'd used that Saturday night. The man that he spoke with wanted to know why he'd called on Saturday night. The pastor couldn't figure out what the guy was talking about. Then the guy said "It rang and rang but I didn't answer." The pastor then remembered the mishap and apologized for disturbing him, explaining that he intended to call his wife. The man said "That's OK. Let me tell you my story. You see I was planning to commit suicide on Saturday night but before I did I prayed, "God if you're there and you don't want me to do this then give me a sign now." At that point my phone started to ring and I looked at the caller id and it said 'Almighty God'. I was too afraid to answer!!" Such miracles do happen and that too in real. By reading such stories individuals get empowered. Their faith in God grows and they live their lives in a much better way. At last I would like to recite a poem on IDEALS by Helen Steiner Rice which states that by following the ideals we shape our future and get empowered...
Remember that ideals
are like stars up in the sky
You can never really reach them
hanging from the heavens high...
But like the mighty mariner
who sailed the storm-tossed sea
and used the star to chart his course
with skill and certainty
You too can chart your course in life
with high ideals and love
For high ideals are like stars
that light the sky above...
You cannot ever reach them
but lift your heart up high
And your life will be as shining
as the stars up in the sky .....

© Anna Massey, 2011


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