Friday, August 27, 2010
Part I of the Hate Journey
This is a piece I wrote a while ago...I'm getting ready to write Part II, so I thought I would first share Part I with you and see what you all think. Comment if you please!
Part I of the Hate Journey
I hate prostitution. Unknown to me before I began absorbing an understanding of God’s heart for justice was the bitter evil of this “business transaction”. Never before had I let the gravity of selling a woman's sexuality for a monetary price move my heart as deeply as it should have. That is, never before I began the mystifying journey of knowing God’s heart better.
Seeking out the heart of the Lord can be a dangerous thing. For when I began to seek out his heart for justice, I soon discovered that there are things in this world I’m called to hate. There are injustices all around me I need to detest and get angry about. Growing up in a home where anger was not an appropriate emotion to express, it was naturally a bit foreign to me. I had to wrap my mind around the fact that our world is a filthy, fallen place.
God can not be around sin; it is his antonym. Therefore, he hates sin. What? God hates? I thought, “This is altering the way I view my Creator. He’s beginning to wear a lot more skin.” There exists a particular evil which I believe breaks the heart of our Lord and this evil is prostitution. So how did these thoughts of seeking out God’s heart, learning to hate sin, and catching on to the hate-frenzy for prostitution come about?
Slumdog Millionaire helped me to be immensely disappointed in and dissatisfied with the world. What an incredible movie and what a tragic portrayal of man! Seeing this film was just the beginning of my voyage.
Good News about Injustice, by Gary Haugen is a remarkable book telling of numerous stories where injustice is currently being fought. Reading this book for a class which I was less than thrilled about, I did not expect to be changed. After all, the tiring phrase, “this book will change your life!” is hard to take seriously. I can’t handle that many life-changing reads. So, Good News about Injustice did not necessarily change my life, but it did transform the way I view our righteous God. Haugen, in this selection, describes why God hates injustice in an easy-to-cotton on way:
“If we had to see it [injustice] and hear it every day like our God does, we would hate it too. To understand where the God of compassion has been is to begin to understand God’s passion for justice. Justice, for our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, is not a good idea, a noble aspiration, a theoretical satisfaction or an impersonal principle-it is his beating heart. He is the ‘man of sorrows, and familiar with suffering,’ who weeps with those who weep (Isaiah 53:3; John 11:33-35)” (81).
One can probably understand by now why my mind was made up about God’s heart for justice after reading a whole book full of statements and sentiments similar to the above. Shortly after, the Lord led me on a remarkable trek, which was this: praying that the nations of the world would hear the name of Jesus. Operation World was the “life-altering” (how I can’t stand to use the other phrase!) book this time. Organizing the countries of the world in alphabetical order and offering its readers a prayer guide for each day of the year, Operation World is a “to the ends of the earth” miracle, really. Before getting my hands on this guide, there were countries (not to mention hundreds of people groups) of which I had never heard. What an outrageous experience it was to knock on the Lord’s heart daily for a year, asking him to send his people, to move hearts, and believing that the King of the World allowed my prayers to move him.
When I arrived at the section on India in June, I wept. One of the major prayer requests for the nation of India was, and still is, an end to child prostitution. There are over seven million child prostitutes in India alone. When I read that number, the word staggering came to mind. Staggering, overwhelming, confounding; I was a wreck! Praise the Lord I wasn’t very emotionally stable as I journeyed through prayers for India because I’m not sure that statistic would hit me the same now. I got on my knees for more days than I could count that summer and cried out for the girls in India; for a physical and spiritual release of these beloved girls who were trapped by sinful men in acrimonious brothels.
Here’s where I get to the unsettling part. What do I do with this information, this passion? I’ve learned to hate injustice, to know God’s heart better, to pray against prostitution, but is that it? I want to go to them, but I know now is not the time. I’ve sat in this frustrating place for a while. But, what I do know is this: the Lord is faithful and good and he will finish the good work he began. My expedition is not over and there is no need for unrest in the unknown.