I had the awesome privilege, this past weekend, to be involved with the team from the Message Trust South Africa and specifically their Enterprise Team, at the inaugural SpeakOut event. This event, held at the Drakenstein correctional facility, saw the men from the MEP class, organise and host a speaking event, which was adjudicated using Toastmaster rules.
The speeches were absolutely brilliantly put together by the 8 speakers. The topics used their personal stories to help the audience identify opportunities to make the correct choices in life. They looked at potential and how by simply making the wrong choice your entire life, as well as those around you, can be impacted.
We heard about hope and how you can make decisions to follow the correct path, they reminded us of how easily we can judge people, how we often do not appreciate those that are around us. We delved into areas of self doubt, how we look at the world around us and paradoxically how life can be good even though it may need to get worse first.
I loved being part of this day and I was humbled to see the reactions of the people that were at the event. The speakers all received amazing accolades. The speeches were peppered with agreement from those that were listening. We saw the immediate impact, with people physically responding to the calls and coming up for prayer (not planned at all – but awesome to witness). I am sure that we will see further impact as these talks begin to happen in other settings.
While I do consider myself part of the team, I only meet up with these guys a few times a year. Each time I see them, my life is changed a little more. Our relationships deepen and I get the privilege to see how they have all grown. This time was no exception.
One of the underlying messages to emerge was that of second chances. I am hopeful, based on my experiences with these guys, that we will see more second chances. I hope that society as a whole will get to experience the power of change and the power of forgiveness. I hope that we see more young leaders emerge from previously broken situations, as a result of amazing work done by amazing people like The Message Trust.
In short I was left humbled, amazed and blessed by the day. I look forward to even more of these in the future. #FutureLeaders