I would like to share the one thing that changed me forever. It best communicates the passion I have for youth entering the adult world. As the result of the event I share below, I began striving to gain credibility in the adult world.
Beyond the Playground
Truth is powerful. Realizing the truth about the world around me gave me the vision and the dream to overcome the numerous trials through which the Lord has brought me. At the age of five, I quickly learned the meaning of trusting in God. The idea that God has a bigger plan for my life has kept me constantly trusting in Him if I was to survive. Through seeing two completely opposite ways of life, I discovered the consequences of following sin and the reward of following Christ. God allowed me to experience these contrasting ways beyond the playground.
The phrases “growing up” and “brought up” have different meanings. The phrase “brought up” indicates the actual place where you lived during your childhood, while the phrase “growing up” conveys the meaning of where you were when you had to think about a world bigger than your own.
At a young age I began to see the wrongs of injustice. On the playground I learned about social classes. The rich child looked down upon the poor child; the popular child belittled the awkward child; and the mean child bullied the weak child. As a result, I began to understand all of these angles as the basic building blocks of society. They were classes of people that no human on earth could stop from forming. This little group of 30 children had all the social aspects of normal society. In the first grade, I remember looking out over the playground, vowing never to forget the lessons I learned and implementing them for the rest of my life.
However, to my amazement, no adult seemed to believe our young minds were capable of grasping bigger ideas. They acted as though they looked down upon us, perhaps forgetting that in two decades we would be the young voters that everyone would worry about. If adults knew what we children thought about and talked about, they would be shocked. Nevertheless, politics began to intrigue me all the more. I wondered what caused these social problems and how could they be solved. On the playground, a spark was kindled that has never gone out. At that young age, I knew I wanted to be a lawyer . . . to help individuals learn the law, understand it, and apply it to their given situation with the hope that it could better their lives.
I felt crazy for wanting to achieve such a goal. Obstacles seemed insurmountable. I was still figuring out who I was . . . a girl who could not imagine completing additional schooling to become an attorney. Nevertheless, I would conquer law school if I could live out my dream of standing for justice. The biggest obstacle to overcome was my dislike for writing. Though I still do not like it, an overwhelming sense of purpose drives me to improve my writing skills.
The lessons I learned at a young age made me aware of a world that was bigger than my family, bigger than my friends, and bigger than my social class. I understood those worlds. I knew what to say and do in order to survive. The one thing that changed me forever was discovering the world beyond the playground.