Sabbatical Lesson #5 – Jesus & Evil & Me

Her father forced her to drink bleach as punishment.  

Her father also forced her at age eight to endure what can only be described as the darkest collection of evil. Her life of rape, violence, neglect, and every other word one can summon to describe the horrible was so awful that at eight years of age she found herself homeless, sleeping on a park bench, and asking God to die. Death, at times, appears preferable to hell.

I only have one question and God’s answer I do not like. How can this even happen?

Evil.

I spent the last few days at Casa Alleluia, an orphanage outside of Antigua, Guatemala. A facility with 500 kids ranging from infants to college students,Casa is a work of God. Started by Mike and Dottie Clark 25 years ago, Casa Alleluia has literally saved thousands of children. Or to say it another way, Casais where hell stops and heaven has a chance. The overwhelming majority of kids at Casa have suffered almost indescribable abuse and neglect.

Personally, my visit came at an interesting time. With five weeks to go in my sabbatical, Casa rekindled part of my calling – I have to be involved in the fight against evil. Jesus is calling not for me to get my hands dirty – the pop-Christian metaphor – but to get my hands bloody. Not with my blood, but his, because there is a brutal battle going on out there that Jesus is fighting now.

The earliest words of the gospels reveal the struggle. In Jesus’ first teaching, this happens;

Suddenly, while still in the meeting place, he was interrupted by a man who was deeply disturbed and yelling out, “What business do you have here with us, Jesus? Nazarene! I know what you’re up to! You’re the Holy One of God, and you’ve come to destroy us!” – Mark 1:24

Jesus came not only for our forgiveness, but for evil’s destruction.

To return to the story, the eight year-old girl is twenty-four, married, and has a beautiful two-year-old daughter. How that all happened is a series of miracles for another day – but know it is a story as beautiful as the beginning was terrible.

For now, Jesus is calling me into a fight. Maybe he is calling you into it too?

 

 

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