I love documentaries! I enjoy a good heartfelt story where someone struggles for a period but then makes it out victorious in the end. That’s a solid documentary in my book. Recently though, I found myself watching a different type of documentary called Finding Home. This story follows three young girls from Cambodia who were all sold by their families or close friends into human trafficking. The girls tell of how they were able to escape their owners and eventually end up at the safe house where they live, which provides them the safety, guidance and help they need to have a future. It’s an amazing documentary that I highly recommend.
The point of this post, however, isn’t to critique a documentary. You see, I noticed something about myself after watching that. I wouldn’t have normally picked that type of film. If I’m honest, I prefer ones that are more manageable, easy to watch, and well, less depressing. Rarely had I let myself watch anything that deterred from that criteria. Things that depicted too much brokenness, hurt, pain, were deemed too intense and not worth my time. This mentality however doesn’t characterize only my movie taste, but also how many of us live our lives.
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We only want to see the good, help with the easy, confront the manageable and convenient and avoid what’s difficult: broken, hurting, and spiritually starved people. If we’re not careful we will convince ourselves if something doesn’t directly affect us, or that we are one person, or that we wouldn’t influence anything that we then are cleared of any responsibility. To which I say, “When did we, as Christians, become jaded and passive for the things that break God’s heart?”.
Human trafficking isn’t the root of my frustration (although that’s certainly an ongoing problem even within the United States). My frustration grows in the sedated lifestyle that many Christians have grown accustomed to. It seems we’ve convinced ourselves that humanity is no longer worth fighting for; that we only remember to pray for each other when there are shootings, bombings, or natural disasters?
Our mentality should be, “I’m going to have a heart for God’s people everyday”.
Jesus never spoke passively towards humanity. Jesus’ entire ministry exemplified his love for us. God decided that we were worth fighting for when He sent His only son to sacrifice himself and opened up a gateway for a relationship and the gift of hope and salvation. Our jobs were never to say “yes” as believers then wait for our days to tick past us expecting a crown at the end. Our job is to take action now and go and make disciples.
We’ve lost sight of the command to “love others” and turned our lives into a declaration of the self. Even in our relationship with God we somehow find a way to make it about ourselves: God, what are you doing for me? When will you make me successful? When will you give me a spouse? Yet all the while I believe God is asking, “What are you doing for me?”. If we allow ourselves to become desensitized to what God originally called us to do it will infect our view of humanity.
Brokenness exists everywhere not just in Cambodia.
There’s brokenness in our homes with our families, in our offices with co-workers, our friends, neighbors, and Starbucks baristas. Those are all God’s sons and daughters that he is fully invested in. We cannot resolve to be passive and hope that the next person who comes along does the work that God is calling us to do? What right do we have to hold the understanding and gift of salvation and never speak about it to anyone else? Go serve God’s people. Pray for the lost. Give financially back to the kingdom. Speak boldly of God’s great glory. Dedicate your life for God and His kingdom. Work as an active follower of Christ. I want to make that commitment to have a heart for God’s people, and not just the parts that are easy and manageable but all of it.
Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others. – Philippians 2:3-4 NIV
So what am I saying? Ignite your passion for what God is calling you to do and see the world as God sees it. Remember that yes there’s brokenness, yes it’s overwhelming, but there is hope and that hope is Jesus. Rise up and activate yourself for God’s kingdom. Let’s not allow ourselves to be desensitized any longer but rather be activist in the fight for humanity.