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Why bother?

You may be wondering what this blog is all about. What is Isaiah’s Cry anyway, and why should I bother to bring it up?

I’ve spent a lot of time in the past 3 or 4 years thinking about “social justice” (more on that later). It all started back when I was born really. You see, I consider myself blessed to have been raised overseas by parents whose mission was to love the poor and the needy. A seed was planted, or perhaps it’s in my DNA, but either way, I haven’t been able to escape the thoughts and questions surrounding injustice nor the deep hunger to spend myself on behalf of the poor and oppressed.

So, this blog is about justice, mercy, God and the calling that every follower of Jesus Christ has to do justice, love mercy and walk humbly with Him. I don’t claim to have all the answers, but I want to go to the One who does and find out what He says about this issue (injustice) that threatens the lives of so many in our world today. I will look at the Bible and see what it says about God’s love and compassion for those who are oppressed and what He calls Christians to do in response to injustice worldwide and to the aliens and strangers in our land, the poor, the widow, the orphan and even our enemies. I will explore current events and ask those difficult questions–questions like, “What can 1 person do in the midst of such tragedy in Darfur?” I will share with you my own struggles, frustrations and failures as my husband and I seek to live a life that both gives dignity to all and that serves as a voice for those who cannot speak for themselves. I hope to share stories of success or at least stories of people who have been set free from the bonds of oppression.

I suppose you might still be wondering what Isaiah’s Cry is… In Isaiah 58, the Lord, through the prophet, Isaiah, speaks to his people about true fasting. He is disturbed (perhaps, that is putting it lightly) by the fact that the people go about fasting and mourning, acting as though they are seeking God, while there are others being oppressed and mistreated in the land even by these people who are seeking God. The people wonder why God does not seem to notice their “holy” acts. And the cry of the Lord through the prophet, Isaiah, goes as follows:

6″Is not this the kind of fasting I have chosen:
to loose the chains of injustice
and untie the cords of the yoke,
to set the oppressed free
and break every yoke?

7 Is it not to share your food with the hungry
and to provide the poor wanderer with shelter—
when you see the naked, to clothe him,
and not to turn away from your own flesh and blood?

8 Then your light will break forth like the dawn,
and your healing will quickly appear;
then your righteousness [a] will go before you,
and the glory of the LORD will be your rear guard.

9 Then you will call, and the LORD will answer;
you will cry for help, and he will say: Here am I.
“If you do away with the yoke of oppression,
with the pointing finger and malicious talk,

10 and if you spend yourselves in behalf of the hungry
and satisfy the needs of the oppressed,
then your light will rise in the darkness,
and your night will become like the noonday.

11 The LORD will guide you always;
he will satisfy your needs in a sun-scorched land
and will strengthen your frame.
You will be like a well-watered garden,
like a spring whose waters never fail.

12 Your people will rebuild the ancient ruins
and will raise up the age-old foundations;
you will be called Repairer of Broken Walls,
Restorer of Streets with Dwellings” (NIV)

This has become my “life verse” and I will spend the rest of my life learning what it means on practical level in my life and in the life of my family. Isaiah’s cry is that believers would obey God’s call to loose the chains of injustice, to act on behalf of the poor and the oppressed. This blog is an exploration of what this means in your life and mine. If we believe that the Bible is God’s word, we cannot ignore this calling. It is a calling to everyone who follows Jesus Christ. I cannot ignore it. I will not ignore it.

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