Sunday, July 10, 2005

International Justice Mission

This morning at Hillside Larry Martin, from International Justice Mission, spoke. It was such a great message, right in line with much that I've been thinking through. He's a very gifted communicator. His text was Matthew 5:14-16, and the title of his message was "Rescued to be Rescuers."

His three points were:

1. Truly receive your rescue - we can't save ourselves
2. Advance into the darkness - we are often afraid that our light will get snuffed out, so we all huddle together
3. Believe the promises of God, offer your obedience, and leave the miracles to God - we often underestimate what God could do through us.

He shared three amazing stories. The first was of Morali, a little girl in South Asia. When her father got sick, and the doctor refused to come to their village unless they first paid him $25, her family was forced to borrow money, which meant that they would become slaves to the lender. They were moved to a rock quarry, where they were to spend the rest of their days. Larry shared that there are over 20 million slaves being held illegally like Morali's family.

The second story involved Esther. Esther had finished high school in Burma and hoped to go to Bible College. She was told about a restaurant job in Thailand, but when she went, she was taken instead to a brothel, and forced to become a prostitute.

The final story was about David, who is from Nairobi. One day five drunk policemen forced him into their car, and demanded that they would not release him until he gave them all of his money. He gave them $1.50. They let him out of the car, but then one of the cops shot him twice. They then proceeded to arrest him. His arm ended up having to be amputated, yet he was handcuffed to a bed while he recuperated.

Fortunately, all of these stories had happy endings. Morali and her family, along with all of the other slaves in the rock quarry, were set free after IJM bought their freedom. They ended up owning the quarry. Esther was set free after a lawyer from IJM heard what was going on. David was released, his charges were dropped, and all five policemen were convicted. He is now in lawschool. When asked by an interviewer on NPR what he was going to do after school, he responded by saying, "Injustice is going to have a new enemy!"

Larry ended his talk with the following passage from Micah:

He has showed you, O man, what is good. And what does the LORD require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God. Micah 6:8

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