Wednesday, November 28, 2012

GenJ In The News

Here at Generation Joshua, we're happy any time that our members write stories about their experiences with Gen J. This week, we're pleased to feature a story by Ashley Melugin from our EAGLES Home Educators club in Georgia. The story and picture were originally published at the Barrow County News.

If you walked into the Florida Hotel ballroom in Orlando any time during election week, you probably would have been greeted by between 100 to 200 plus young home school students who all belong to a club called Generation Joshua. Why were they there? Because they feel they can make a difference in their country, no matter their age. As Vanessa, age 12, said, "The Student Action Team was an experience which was not only enjoyable, but also inspiring because anyone can make a difference if they have the will to do so."

What is Generation Joshua and what are Student Action Teams? Generation Joshua is a branch of the Home School Legal Defense Association which wants to ‘assist parents to raise up the next generation of Christian leaders and citizens equipped to positively influence the political process of today and tomorrow.’ Student Action Teams are a way for them to help students, like us, influence the political process of today.

For those who belong to Generation Joshua, if you sign up for a Student Action Team, they send you where they need you. We had some people in Florida who had come all the way from California.

"The Student Action Team was a great experience because I got to learn about campaigning, and it was great to be making a difference," said Shayna, age 14.

While we were there, we did literature drops, dropping non-partisan voter guides at the doors of targeted voters, and we did phone-banking, phone-banking and more phone-banking. We did so much phone-banking, that they rewarded us by sending us to a Mitt Romney rally!

"The Student Action Team in Florida was both a tiring and a rewarding experience," recalls Max. "The tiring part was phone-banking. I prefer literature dropping as opposed to calling people I don’t know and telling them to go vote. A few people I called hung up before I finished talking, a few yelled at me, but a few were very nice and thanked me for calling. The rewarding parts were really cool. Not only did I get to learn about being politically active, but we also got to see Mitt Romney, which was a huge reward for our hard work."

Some of the members of our club even high-fived him! (Including yours truly.)

The leaders were amazing as well. Our ‘General,’ Jeremiah Lorrig, would give us a devotional and a run down of what the next day would look like every day, and our ‘captains,’ members of Generation Joshua’s Leadership Corp, helped keep the whole week going smoothly. They helped keep morale up with songs, prizes, and a contest for the funniest phone-banking story. They were absolutely amazing, and seemed to have no end to their energy reserves when the rest of us were tired and down.

"My favorite part of the Student Action Team was meeting new friends and having the feeling of doing something important for the American people," said Liam, "and that would not have been possible without our fearless leaders!"

Many of us went with our families. Our club has many families with multiple children, and even the little ones were kept busy. One of the siblings, Sam, commented, "I had fun and it was cool."

The moms were also kept busy, and were duly impressed.

"It was encouraging to see so many young people who, like Joshua in the Bible, were willing to stand up and take action for what they believe. It gives me hope for the future of our Republic," said Ms. Fatima.

Why did we do this? As my friend, Josiah, said in his speech on political activism, "So, how did I become politically active before I could vote? Well, because my mom thought it was important. I need a government credit to graduate. And this is a once in a lifetime experience. I became politically active by doing something. As a Christian, God expects certain actions. He expects us to obey the government. The Bible says that we need to pray for our government authorities, and that we need to make proper appeals in the face of injustice. And finally, we have a Christian duty to be politically involved. If we do not stand up for Godly principles, who will?"

I know the reason I do it, and it’s because I love it. I am a 16-year-old who truly loves and is concerned for my country, and I want to make sure it runs smoothly as it can. I love to know the whys and wherefores behind politics, and I constantly read my Politico and Fox News apps every chance I get. And, though I may not always agree with those in power, I try everyday to be sure to fulfill my duty to pray for them.

I’d like to leave you with a word from another one of our club members, Hannah, and a question. What can you do?

"Not everyone is called to be a politician," said Hannah, "but, maybe there is something you can do, something you can fit into your busy schedule. It doesn’t matter how old you are. You can still make the difference, which is exactly what over 200 kids figured out in a Florida hotel over election week. The best thing about this experience is realizing, even though I am just a kid, I can still make a difference in my country. Even though I don’t have a vote, I can still help change the course of our nation, for my generation and my children’s generation. And, in the end, we realize, as John Quincy Adams said, ‘the duty was ours, but, the results are God’s.’ And on the plane ride home, it felt good to know that, even though the outcome wasn’t what we had hoped for, it wasn’t from lack of trying on our part."

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