Proclaiming Freedom For The Captives

Thursday, August 14, 2014

This is a cry from a very human, mamma heart. We must use our voices for freedom.

I was just thinking thinking back over my travels this summer and realizing again that if you have not been raped, beaten, sold, abused, or abandoned your life is among the very small percentage of extremely privileged around the globe. Really. I've been so overcome by the thoughts of Mamma's and Daddy's watching their kids be brutally attacked in Africa and the Middle East. I've seen first hand the childhood victims of sexual abuse in Haiti and Rwanda and then...

Then I happened upon the Ferguson story via Deidra Riggs who shares a deep heart song of mine.  Ya'll this is our back yard....again.

I am not one to normally compare sufferings, but today I am. Because we need some perspective. Not to feel guilty but to be educated, motivated to be passionate pursuers and a people who don't turn a blind eye but people who rise up for the good of humanity.

Another Mamma in AMERICA is facing the death of her son. Friends, I don't care who's side you are on, I don't care what political party you belong to or what religion you practice or what color your skin is.
 or lack of it.

Yes, this strikes a nerve in me because there is a little boy who has darker skin than me and I say his prayers with him and tuck him in at night for at least half his days on Earth every year. I kiss and hug him once for every year he's been alive and once more for every day of the week. It's our thing. God has let me share the position of  Mamma with the Mamma who gave him life and I don't take it lightly. It is an honor to be a part of their story and to share the love he has to give. We are a team, she and I, two mamma's loving one little boy with all we've got. We shouldn't have to fear for him silently. He is good and full of joy and a bright future awaits.

But even more than that, it also strikes a nerve in me because I am human. I have met countless women recently both in my community and those through my travels, who are also raising their kids with a silent fear in the back of their mind. Kids who are good and precious and valuable and deserve to live life fully and without fear. Ya'll my heart cries out today with righteous anger and a fierce spirit. We must stop throwing stones and start speaking life into the dry bones of this broken world. Stop rushing around to do all the things that we think we need to do to make us happy, or our kids well rounded and start rushing in, start teaching them about what things really matter. We must stop turning a blind eye and start seeing past the outter appearances. We must stop pretending our voices don't matter and start realizing the absence of them is decay. If those of us who love deeply and passionately sit silenced, who is left to give a voice for the voiceless?

From my perspective...

I walked through a genocide memorial, just weeks ago in Rwanda and passed down hallways with rows and rows of the smashed skulls of babies.

Let that one sink in a minute.

It wasn't in some place 100 years ago or some barbaric land, it was while most of you could have been sitting at Starbucks with a Latte or like me cheering at a high school basketball game. These remains were from little bodies that left little mickey mouse shirts behind and they were those of women who liked to look pretty. I know this because lovingly collected and stacked on the church pews where they were corralled and brutally murdered lay their clothing. Piles of matching suits and jewelry, black paten purses with colorful flowers that held the same things as mine, bottles, candy wrappers, bobby pins and a few spare dollars. The people that were murdered weren't all that different form you and me. They were simply not valued, they were not thought to be as worthy as some others. There was stigma and prejudice and the bitter roots grew until one day a white woman from America was walking through their remains carefully placed in the church they were murdered in paralyzed with more emotions that she can muster the words for. This is reality.

I saw bones stacked 12 feet high and heard stories of women and girls being raped up to 20 times before a steak was jabbed through their bodies taking whatever life was left.

Ever since, I have thought of the story of Joseph and how favoritism reeked havoc and chaos and destruction. The genocide in Rwanda didn't happen overnight friends. Joseph's brothers weren't driven to their breaking points over one incident. It was a slow drip of vile favoritism over time that finally butchered a million people in Rwanda and sent Joseph to be a slave in a foreign land.

Is that such a far cry from what is happening today in our on back yard of Ferguson?

When does it end? When do we get fed up enough that we start making an effort to truly educate our people so that this doesn't end up being our reality. When do we stop drawing lines between people and intentionally draw ones that connect them? Because for far to many Mamma's today this reality is real. I don't pretend to have the answers, but today I sit with tears burning my face and a frustration that thrusts me forward  to continue fighting for justice with my still small voice. People matter. All of them. Not just the ones that look like you, dress like you, talk like you, worship like you. They all matter. Their lives, their stories, their impact on this planet. It matters.


Start with the people in front of you and work out from there. Be intentional, be real, expose some hard things to your children that might be uncomfortable because I promise you, if you don't someone will and what they hear form others may impact them in a way that leads them to stand for a far different set of values than you'd like. My kids have seen and heard some hard stuff, loved some broken people who hurt them and you know what, they can take it. Not only can they take it but they have a bigger view of who God is and what it will cost them to follow Jesus.

Let's all strive to be a people of change and justice and light and let's not sit by in silence and do nothing while the world cries out for us to use our voices for good.

This is my favorite verse. And for my friends who practice different faiths, I think there is enough grace in it for all of us. I add it not to be preachy, but out of a fierce sense of responsibility, love and hope. I pray we all become like the well watered gardens, spilling out over a dry, parched land, I pray we reach across the lines drawn between us and bind up the brokenhearted. I beg of you all to use your voice to proclaim freedom for the captives and may we all pray for the day we see the devastated walls rebuilt!

Isaiah 61
The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is on me,
    because the Lord has anointed me
    to proclaim good news to the poor.
He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted,
    to proclaim freedom for the captives
    and release from darkness for the prisoners,[a]
to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor
    and the day of vengeance of our God,
to comfort all who mourn,
    and provide for those who grieve in Zion—
to bestow on them a crown of beauty
    instead of ashes,
the oil of joy
    instead of mourning,
and a garment of praise
    instead of a spirit of despair.
They will be called oaks of righteousness,
    a planting of the Lord
    for the display of his splendor.
They will rebuild the ancient ruins
    and restore the places long devastated;
they will renew the ruined cities
    that have been devastated for generations.
Strangers will shepherd your flocks;
    foreigners will work your fields and vineyards.
And you will be called priests of the Lord,
    you will be named ministers of our God.
You will feed on the wealth of nations,
    and in their riches you will boast.
Instead of your shame
    you will receive a double portion,
and instead of disgrace
    you will rejoice in your inheritance.
And so you will inherit a double portion in your land,
    and everlasting joy will be yours.
“For I, the Lord, love justice;
    I hate robbery and wrongdoing.
In my faithfulness I will reward my people
    and make an everlasting covenant with them.
Their descendants will be known among the nations
    and their offspring among the peoples.
All who see them will acknowledge
    that they are a people the Lord has blessed.”
10 I delight greatly in the Lord;
    my soul rejoices in my God.
For he has clothed me with garments of salvation
    and arrayed me in a robe of his righteousness,
as a bridegroom adorns his head like a priest,
    and as a bride adorns herself with her jewels.
11 For as the soil makes the sprout come up
    and a garden causes seeds to grow,
so the Sovereign Lord will make righteousness
    and praise spring up before all nations.


  1. New fan from quiet graces photography. What a blog. Tears were streaming as I read through your many posts. Many of us will never get to travel and see the heartbreak you have seen. But like you said, it's happening every day in our back yards. God has recently put on my heart to get involved with a company helping rescued trafficked women and children. I have yet to do it, but as I read your blog I am so convicted of my lack of ministry and voice for justice. Thank you for the encouragement.

    1. Well, first of all thanks for commenting to let me know the Spirit used little me to water your soul! That's what it's all about. Beginning. Somewhere, anywhere. I am so Regular and normal and small but God lives to use is small people to do big things! That is such a burden on my heart too. I am praying my favorite verse over you right now! Ephesians 3:20 just say yes, let Him do the rest!!! Much Love! He holds every tear! Xoxoxoxo


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