Don't Be a Loser!

We have all received gifts. Let's use them!

GuyWho says you are a loser? Have you ever heard people say that we came into this world to suffer? That we need to resign ourselves to our lot because that is just the way things are? Think again!

  • Aurora Lopez couldn't read because she had never had a chance to go to school. With lots of effort and perseverance she learned, got an elementary education, and went on to get her GED diploma. Then she started a small business.
  • Marta Snchez lived in a poor neighborhood of a big city, riddled with drugs, gangs, and all kinds of problems. She started participating in the activities of the youth group. She says, "I grew in self-esteem." Today she has a degree in early childhood education and is a teacher in her own neighborhood.
  • Reinaldo Romero lived in a poor neighborhood in San Juan, Puerto Rico, where drugs and lack of formal education were rampant and people had just given up. He offered the trunk of his beat-up car to start a small lending library.

What these three examples have in common is that these three people refused to pity themselves. They had to fight. No one is born into defeat or failure. Many people are told early in life to be "good losers." But people need to rebel. Oppression begins to be conquered by a personal change of attitude.

  • Moses had a speech impediment, yet he confronted Pharaoh to get freedom for the Israelites.
  • David was a young shepherd who had to confront a giant in order to defend his people.
  • When Jesus' disciples started to preach after the Resurrection, people thought they were drunk because it was strange that such poor and uneducated fishermen should be speaking so forcefully.

Christ did not give up in the face of injustice, obstacles, and persecution. Like Christ, we need to persist stubbornly until we conquer even death.

Ten tips for not being a loser

  1. Don't think you are worthless because you have problems. God does not make junk.
  2. Open the lines of communication with your parents or other adults. Your parents might have problems, but they surely want the best for you.
  3. Identify something you are good at, music? computers? mechanics? writing?and work hard to be even better.
  4. Make a list of things you know you can achieve. It does not have to be for years, just for today and tomorrow. Be faithful to your commitments.
  5. Associate. Seek out youth groups in your neighborhood or in your parish. Other young people have problems similar to yours, and you can help each other.
  6. Find somebody who needs your help. Make a commitment to do something for that person.
  7. Be informed about your country and your neighborhood. How are you going to make this society a little better?
  8. Find help. There are organizations in this country devoted to your future. Seek them out on the Internet.
  9. Be inspired. There is at least one person who loves you unconditionally and expects great things from you.
  10. And more inspiration! Read the gospels. You'll meet people who did not give up in the face of poverty and sickness. Jesus himself an exiled, poor, and persecuted immigrant continued his mission of liberation without ever backing down.
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