Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Seek Justice: Broken Hearts For A Broken World

The title of this blog was inspired by a seminar that I attended recently at Missionfest. Are our hearts truly broken by the brokenness that we see in the world? Or do we feel overwhelmed at challenges faced around the globe or worse yet, have we become insensitive or apathetic to the suffering in the world? As I think of this I am reminded of the following quote by Edmund Burke that I read recently: “All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing”

Oh Lord let it not be said of us that we sat by idle while people around us suffered needlessly because we were too busy with our own little worlds. Let it not be said of us that we ignored the plight of the opppressed, the orphan, the widow because we were so busy consuming all the blessings that You meant for us to share. Let it not be said of us that we choose to turn our eyes from the pain and suffering of this world so that we would shield ourselves from those emotions.

The Canadian director of International Justice Mission reminded me recently that we need to get intimate with the stories of suffering we read about, whether it be about the persecuted church or the child who has been repeatedly abused because she was forced into prostitution. Unless we get intimate with the hurt, how can we truly develop Jesus' compassion for those who are hurting. Unless we are willing to enter into the horror of their pain, despite how sick it makes us feel as we read about these stories, how can we truly pray with hearts that are broken by the things that break God's heart. THese days as part of this 'divine moment' God inspired me to raise awareness about what the biblical mandate for justice is...what does that look like? As a body of believers, we know we are suppose to be involved with setting the captives free, we know we are suppose to fight against injustice, but we have no clue really what that looks like? So often our friends who work overseas including us, feel overwhelmed at the task especially when the people we are up against are corrupt officials.

So here I am now coordinating a conference for June 17, 2006 entitled "Seek Justice: Broken Hearts For A Broken World." We have learned how to feed the hungry, heal the sick and shelter the homeless, but there is one thing we still haven’t learned to do, even though God’s Word repeatedly calls us to the task. We haven’t learned how to rescue the oppressed. For the child in forced prostitution, for the prisoner illegally detained and tortured, for the widow robbed of her land, for the child sold into slavery, we have almost no vision of how God could use us to bring tangible rescue. All these forms of abuse and oppression as well as others are witnessed by missionaries and relief workers on a daily basis.(A quote from Good News About Injutice by Gary Haugen, IJM)

If you are interested in learning more about this conference or attending it, please let me know. We are praying for 300 people to attend from all over Toronto. My own prayer is that God will raise up an army of people who will be a voice for the voiceless.

1 comment:

out_there_q said...

lisa, how awesome is the One who speaks that truth to us, and yet has grace while we learn to let Him break our hearts. kyrie Eleison
I'm so looking forward to the conference!!