Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Evil Has No Boundaries

This past Sunday I woke up with four words on my mind ''Evil has no boundaries.'' I was thinking about that because last Saturday I had an encounter with a French pedophile while I was walking along the waterfront with one of my Khmer friends. We had just noticed him having a seat by the water when about a minute passed and a woman and her child who looked no older than 12 years old came and sat next to him. What was interesting was his position. His back was to her as she started to chat with him. Initially we walked by but perhaps it was the prompting of the Holy Spirit that we felt we couldn't just pass by. We had to stop and look and watch. God had given His eyes to see the evil before us. The word ''evil'' is a strong word but for me there is no better word to describe the kind of atrocities that are being perpetrated against vulnerable young kids in Cambodia. It is an outright attack on the innocent and the defenseless.
French Pedophile in the middle of the photo in a white t-shirt with his back towards a mother and her daughter

We decided to sit next to the threesome and eavesdrop on the conversation. The little girl was asking for food. My friend noticed the old man passing money behind his back to give to the woman. We heard snippets of the conversation, like the girl calling the woman ''mak'' (mother') and the ''mother'' telling her that she would have to go alone. What did that mean? We sat and waited. About 10 minutes later they moved on to another section of the waterfront on a park bench that was away from the crowds. So we continued to watch. We then began to pray for the Lord to frustrate the plans of this man, to block his efforts to harm this young girl, to make him so sick and even impotent...yes I pray some outrageous prayers so that he will hate being here that he will never want to return. God brought to mind Psalm 10 at that time as I had just read it earlier that day in my daily bible readings.

Psalm 10:2 in his arrogance the wicked man hunts down the weak, who are caught in the schemes he devises.His mouth is full of lies and threats; trouble and evil are under his tongue.He lies in wait near the villages;from ambush he murders the innocent.His eyes watch in secret for his victims;like a lion in cover he lies in wait.He lies in wait to catch the helpless;he catches the helpless and drags them off in his net.10 His victims are crushed, they collapse; they fall under his strength.11 He says to himself, “God will never notice; he covers his face and never sees.”12 Arise, Lord! Lift up your hand, O God. Do not forget the helpless.13 Why does the wicked man revile God?     Why does he say to himself, “He won’t call me to account”? 14 But you, God, see the trouble of the afflicted; you consider their grief and take it in hand.The victims commit themselves to you;you are the helper of the fatherless. 15 Break the arm of the wicked man; call the evildoer to account for his wickedness that would not otherwise be found out.

Thirty minutes passed and I began to feel more agitated and irritated. I had to do something.I wanted to plant some fear in this man but what really can I do. I think we often feel this way when we see what appears to be a ''Goliath'' situation before us.  It was so clear that this man was like a lion waiting to catch his prey. Anyway, I felt led to talk to him and share with him four words so off I went in his direction with my friend walking alongside me. He saw us coming towards him and began waving us off. I think he probably felt that we could not speak English so as I went straight up to him I said ''sir, you are being watched.'' I turned and started walking away and he got up, indeed he was a bit of a skinny Goliath over 6 feet tall but very frail looking as he must have been in his late 70s. He looked at me a bit stunned until the words sunk in and then he got up and started in my direction yelling at me ''hey, what I am being watched for." So I repeated the same words again and as he started walking towards me, I looked in the face and pointed at him saying ''don't you come near me, you are being watched.'' 

What did that accomplish? If anything I hope it created a bit of fear and doubt in his mind that where ever he went, he would feel that someone was watching him.   Indeed, someone is watching him all the time. God indeed is noticing the evil intentions of this man. Moreover, I hope that little 12 year old girl did not have to face a night of terror that evening. She had one more night free of violence. But in the midst of such darkness, we are not naive to believe that that mother will not attempt to sell her daughter again or that pedophile will not attempt to hurt another little girl for evil has no boundaries, it simply wants to seek, kill and destroy all the time, any where, anyone. Yet despite this, I call to mind the words of Psalm 10:16-18, The Lord is King for ever and ever; You, Lord, hear the desire of the afflicted; you encourage them, and you listen to their cry, defending the fatherless and the oppressed, so that mere earthly mortals will never again strike terror. These are the promises of God that we stand on knowing that He does see, He does hear and He does respond just as He did in the past when He sent Moses to deliver the Israelites from the Egyptians. So once again all of us who work on the frontlines ministering to survivors of trafficking and you who diligently pray and give --together we are called to be modern day Moses who God is sending forth to seek justice on behalf of the oppressed  into places like Cambodia, a hot bed for sex tourism and sex trafficking. This battle is not for the faint hearted, it can wear you down, it will disturb your spirit when you hear and read of man's inhumanity to a child,  it will require more than you and I can ever give but nonetheless, it is worth it--it is a fight for life, it is a fight for dignity, it is a fight for freedom, it is a fight for hope and it is a fight for love. Everyday at the RAP home,  we remind the young women how much we love them and how much God loves them. For love is the greatest apologetic.  It is the essential component in reaching the whole person in a fragmented world. The need is vast, but it is also imperative that we be willing to follow the example of Jesus and meet the need.(Ravi Zacharias)

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