How To Affect Change Right Where You Are

In some sessions, I couldn’t jot down notes fast enough. In others, I nodded as the presenter imparted wisdom I had learned earlier.

This was a good conference. One in which education and transition successes were shared and processes discussed.

But as I stepped out of one particularly helpful session where I had gathered connections that would help me find the best living arrangement for my daughter down the road, I felt an overwhelming urge to scream. (Since I stood in the hall of a conference center, I thought better of the idea and instead stepped outside to gather my thoughts.)

I captured the essence of those thoughts in a Facebook post:

Today I’m learning much and gaining great insight into the world of transitioning our special education kiddos to adulthood. Much is good but much needs improving—like most of life. 

It’s making me want to change the world for Rach and for all those who are learning and developing differently. Ever feel called to affect change but don’t know how?

Special education and support for those with disabilities has come a long way since the 1970s, but there is still so far to go. I want to make it better faster.

I want to help each child get the tools they need to reach their God-given potential today.

I want to erase money from ever being discussed as a barrier to providing services.

But this isn’t a perfect world and I am only one person fighting a battle much bigger than me. Like David fighting Goliath (1 Samuel 17), the odds seem stacked against me. 


How Can I Affect Change?

So what should I do? Give up? Let it be someone else’s problem? Duck my head and pretend all is well (after all it is better)? Lay down my sling and stones and let Goliath win? 

A wise online friend commented on my Facebook post: “One person at a time. Do what He puts before you and do it with passion. It might not seem like much but to that one person it means a lot. It matters.”

“Do what He puts before you and do it with passion.” 

There we have the recipe for change: God placed Goliath before David, and David passionately took him out and affected great change in the lives of the Israelites.

God put my daughter’s care and education before me. He wants me to pursue what’s best for Rachel. My passionate advocacy means a lot to her (even though she cannot express that)—and to those who come after her.

Improving something takes persistence and dedication—making a difference can be prohibitively frustrating. Yet however daunting it may seem, there is always hope.

If God has placed you in a particular place at a particular time, then you are His instrument of change in that instance. He is looking to you to make a difference, no matter how small it may be. And He will equip you with just the right stones of action, just as He did with David.

If God has placed you in a particular place and time, then you are His instrument of change in that instance. Click To Tweet

We can each affect change. Making something better starts with passionately doing what God puts before us and happens one step at a time, by reaching one person at a time. 

We just have to be willing.

Affecting change begins with passionately doing what God puts before you. Click To Tweet

 “Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying: ‘Who should I send? Who will go for Us?’ I said: ‘Here I am. Send me.'” (Isaiah 6:8)

Reflection: What has God put before you to do? Are you being obedient and acting with passion?

Linking with Ann Voskamp at A Holy Experience in 2013 with my Joy Dare list for Multitude Mondays (#2166–2186, read the entire list by clicking here):

  • Shimmering ripples on the early morning lake; Celebrating 24 years w/ my hubby; Homemade anniversary cards fm the boys
  • Variety of foods to try–spaghetti squash today; Wonder of a falling leaf thru my daughter’s eyes; Daily strength & joy
  • Amazing world of technology; Peaceful wog along the river; Time to think, pray, & learn w/o “mommy” interruptions
  • Rach carried out a phone “conversation” of more than hi&bye w/ me–1st time!; Reconnecting w/ a mama-advocate; Day’s end
  • Reunion hugs; Hearing the voice of a sweet friend from afar; Sharing the evening with hubby’s sister and spouse
  • Watched Zach perform well in his last marching band contest w/3 of my fav people; Great inlaws; Finding bulk herbal teas
  • Helping hubby look for his downed deer; Son’s big grins & goofy faces while I took his senior pics; Midwest autumn

Also linking with this wonderful site:

By His grace ≈


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Find hope in your real-life struggles. We'll chase it together! I am a wife; mom of 4 (including a young adult daughter with special needs); miscarriage mom of 5; author & follower of Jesus Christ. I write, edit, speak and enjoy everything outdoors.

4 comments on “How To Affect Change Right Where You Are
  1. Hi Julie, it reminds me a lot of Jesus feeding the 5000. He told the Disciples to do it. When they hesitated he showed them the way. He never prayed for more fish or bred. He simply blessed what he had. I know I need do a better job using what I have and not stressing over what I don’t have. – God has given me what I need right now to bring about change.

    • Julie Sunne says:

      Great example, Jon! I hadn’t thought of that account from that angle. Thanks for sharing. I’m with you on needing to not stress–as you can see from my FB post. 🙂

  2. Brianna Siegrist says:

    Love it! 🙂

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