In the past 24 hours, two unbelievable and outraging global events have been called to my attention (and probably yours). The first is what Kony is doing in Uganda. This video by Invisible Children went viral and exposed an unimaginable fate for young boys and girls.
The second is Tiny Hands International which was our Shalom project for Breakaway. Tiny Hands International is fighting a war on sex-trafficking in Nepal. They monitor the border between Nepal and India to intercept young girls before they make it to India to be beaten and sold until they die. This video is from a girl who was rescued after her family was tricked into selling their own daughter into the sex trade.
I sat in my apartment this afternoon and felt broken. I am so spoiled. I feel useless. Sure, I can try and spread the word...post it on my facebook, put it on my blog, but does that really do anything?? Even the people who are doing that are getting backlash for it.
"You're not an activist if all you do is post a video to facebook..."
Okay, that makes me feel like a fraud, but I do care. I feel a brokenness in my heart for these children, these countries. What can I do??
I prayed this before I started a lesson from Max Lucado's Experiencing the Heart of Jesus. Title for today's section? Everyone needs a miracle. New memory verse? You guessed it:
2 Corinthians 12:9.
But He said "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness." Therefore, I will boast all the more gladly about my weakness, so that Christ's power may rest on me.
In the lesson, Max says:
"You have nothing to give. But you are hurting. And all you have to offer him is your hurt."
In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groans that words cannot express.
The Lord is far from the wicked but He hears the prayer of the righteous.
And the prayer offered in faith will make the sick person well; the Lord will raise him up. If he has sinned, he will be forgiven. Therefore, confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective.
I underestimate the power of prayer. I don't do it often enough. I'm not earnest. My prayers aren't for how others are hurting, mostly they are ways to make my life better. Easier. More fun. I have big plans, God, so I really need these few things to fall into place, k, thanks!
But today, all I have to do is offer up my hurt.
I see movies like Taken and think that's all it is...movies. Surely this isn't happening. Or maybe it's happening..on the other side of the world..where I don't have to see it, almost never have to hear about it. I can go about my day without a worry, or at least without a real worry.
So, everyone can do something to help these causes. Pray. Keep informed about what's going on in the world and here in the US and bring those issues to God! He is big enough! He hears the prayers of the broken and he is made perfect in our weakness. Pray and let God do big things. Also, listen. Listen to what God is leading you to do, where he is telling you to go, who he wants you to talk to. Personally, this is so hard.
I love the song "What do I know of Holy" by Addison Road. Especially this line:
I tried to hear from Heaven, but I talked the whole time.
Back to the topic of social activism for one last comment. I'm reading the book Blue Like Jazz right now and thought Donald Miller had an interesting point when talking about a friend he refers to as Andrew the Protester (you get the idea):
"I started feeling very much like a hypocrite. More than my questions about the efficacy of social action were my questions about my own motives. Do I want social justice for the oppressed, or do I just want to be known as a socially active person? I spend 95% of my time thinking about myself anyway. I don't have to watch the evening news to see that the world is bad, I only have to look at myself. I am not browbeating myself here; I am only saying that true change, true life-giving, God-honoring change would have to start with the individual. I was the very problem I had been protesting. I wanted to make a sign that read "I AM THE PROBLEM!"
I realize this post is heavy and may be misconstrued as negative or self-deprecating. It's not meant to be that! It's meant to give HOPE! We are all weak and Paul says to boast in that because our God is strong! He is mighty to save!