Imagine with me for a moment. Imagine a 65-year old man. He's old. He's pruny. He's probably got a wife and kids and grand-kids. And he's staying overnight in a hotel. Nothing out of the ordinary so far.
But he's got a little girl with him and that's a little strange. It's not his grand-daughter and they're definitely not hanging out at the pool.
No, in fact, she's the 9 year old little girl he picked up around the corner. And brought back to the hotel with him. And paid for to spend the night with him.
Continue to imagine with me. He's caught (thank the Lord) and the investigator in charge of the case leads the questioning. After awhile Mr. Investigator comes to some conclusions. You know, Pruny 65-Year Old Man who was caught prostituting a 9-year old girl, I think I was wrong. I see that you're really just a guy who's got some issues, but who doesn't? I think you're trying. I'm gonna let you go and you try and do better. Next time, at least make sure she's not 9.
(Who of us would not want to hunt that man down and so help us not make him regret the day he woke up and breathed air?)
Love without justice is not loving at all. If I do not discipline my son, in the name of love, I have not been loving at all. I have done him much harm.
Micah 6:8 says, He has told you O man, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?
Do justice. Do justice. While loving kindness and walking humbly with our God, we are to actually act with justice, to do something, on behalf of others. The Lord has required, not requested, that of us.
Perhaps even on behalf of the 27 million slaves that exist today. Or on behalf of the more than 120 million orphans in the world.
You know that story that I had you use your imagination for? Except for Mr. Investigator, it's true. It happened this week. In Cambodia. My friend of many years was part of the sting that caught that man.
They were doing justice. Not in the way the world often does it - getting even, raining down revenge. But in a way that reflects the heart of God, they were acting rightly and justly (i.e. doing something) on behalf of the oppressed.
If you're anything like me, this overwhelms you. You're thinking, It's too much! What could I possibly do that would make one minuscule amount of difference in the face of such large-scale problems? I have two small kids, I'm barely managing to do good here!
One thing I'm learning is that I can do something. I can't do everything and I can't even do big things, but I can do something. I can collect our cereal boxes and send them to Haiti so the women there can use them to make jewelry and make a living for themselves. I can give financially to others who are on the front lines. I can pray and pray hard that God would raise up rescuers. Something is always better than nothing.
Laura, my dear friend, and also wife to the friend that was part of the sting, talks here about something specific and tangible that we can do to do something.
Walk humbly with your God.
"O Lord, you hear the desire of the afflicted;
you will strengthen their heart;
you will incline your ear
to do justice to the fatherless and the oppressed,
so that man who is of the earth may strike terror no more."