Send Me to Nepal!

In 2010 I traveled to Nepal with a team of youth. We backpacked through the country helping a local group called the Nepali Rescue Project. The Nepali Rescue Project has been an extension of my church since 2006 when my pastor, Eric Watt, listened to a friend and took action against the epidemic of sex trafficking in Nepal.

Human trafficking is the trade in humans by forcing or tricking someone into forced labor, most commonly for the purpose of sexual slavery or commercial sexual exploitation.

Nepal is a country slightly larger than Arkansas, with a population of 27 million compared to Arkansas’ 3 million. Nepal has 15 borders crossings that connect to India and China. The ability for traffickers to take young children across these borders for profit is often very easy. Through the dedicated staff and leadership of the Nepali Rescue Project team, there are now 15 border stations that intercept traffickers and victims! The victims are then rescued, often taken to a safe place, and given care where they learn a new trade or skill before returning to their villages. Currently the Nepali Rescue Project rescues more than 20,000 girls every year.

With the terror of the recent earthquake over the weekend, our contacts in Nepal were able to report all safe homes of the rescued girls are intact, but many of the villages are completely gone. Food and housing are desperately needed. Will you help? Send me to Nepal!

July 6-17th I have the honor of leading a team to Nepal to help the Nepali Rescue Project with medical screenings and village care.  Your donation will provide supplies for the village and transportation costs for the team. Our goal is $3,000 per person sent. Please donate through Greenbrier Church‘s Quick Give and then select “Nepal” from the menu:

DonateGreenOr send a check, with “Nepal Team” in the memo, to:

Greenbrier Church
1101 Volvo Parkway
Chesapeake, VA 23320

All donations Greenbrier Church are tax deductible. Thank you for joining us in the aid to the Nepali Rescue Project and the country of Nepal. Spread the word!

-Charity Mack

A Reminder of Compassion

For the last three months I have been working on a youth focused curriculum for work. The topic is about human sex trafficking and what it looks like in the United States. Also how pornography fuels human trafficking, albeit unintentionally by most consumers of pornography. It has been a difficult curriculum to write because 1. I feel ill qualified and 2. the topic is heavy. But neither diminish the need for such a resource.

As I finished the final pages last week and prepared to e-mail it off to some people who would read and give feedback, I was praying that God would do something great with this resource because without some miracle it really won’t go far. As I was praying I was reminded of a time when I was 14 years old at church youth group. I was learning how to hear God. I learned from Him that day that I would have great compassion for people, especially those that most do not have compassion for. What a funny thing memory does. It recollects at some of the oddest times. I was rather amazed as I finish a small project, that was rather large to me, the encouragement came from a memory 16 years prior: compassion.

Cody1.JPG

The swirling thought continues: The brain is processing and the heart is cultivating compassion. Webster defines compassion as “sympathetic consciousness of others’ distress together with a desire to alleviate it.” To further break this down, consciousness is being “aware” and sympathy is more than just feeling sorry for someone, it is caring and sharing in their (or each other’s) lives. In short, to be aware of others’ lives.

In general, very surface observation of these concepts – compassion, sympathy and consciousness, isn’t anything new. Frankly it should be 101, elementary, in one’s human existence; to be aware and care about others. But what compassion teaches, unlike sympathy or a simple consciousness of others, is it encourages additional action. To be aware of other’s difficulties and struggles is one step, but to do something about it is another. What role is available to assist in alleviating another’s struggle? This is the game changing perspective that compassion brings.

Cody2.jpg

Romans 9:16 says, “Compassion doesn’t originate in our bleeding hearts or moral sweat, but in God’s mercy.” Simply put, compassion can and should come from God. How much deeper it is when compassion for others is bred from His lens and not just one’s own. Why is it deeper? Because the widened perspective and yet intimate understanding God has for each and everyone one of us individually, and as a collective whole, is frankly phenomenal.

I believe that often we view God as either a being that 1. doesn’t exist and is just a friendly concept, 2. exists, but in a big way that isn’t personal, for example He might cause great storms but has little involvement in say my personal need for a job, a broken relationship, and so on 3. God is both a being that has the the broad view of humanity’s needs AND compassion for each and every one of our individual lives, struggles, and hopes.

Cody3.JPG

What compassion then does for each of us is offers the perspective God already has: mercy. Mercy is simply the remedy, the action of compassion. God is the ultimate example of this. Our faith, our belief in this merciful compassion from God, is what saves us from ourselves.

With the arrival of Jesus, the Messiah, that fateful dilemma is resolved. Those who enter into Christ’s being-here-for-us no longer have to live under a continuous, low-lying black cloud. A new power is in operation. The Spirit of life in Christ, like a strong wind, has magnificently cleared the air, freeing you from a fated lifetime of brutal tyranny at the hands of sin and death.
God went for the jugular when he sent his own Son. He didn’t deal with the problem as something remote and unimportant. In his Son, Jesus, he personally took on the human condition, entered the disordered mess of struggling humanity in order to set it right once and for all.
But if God himself has taken up residence in your life, you can hardly be thinking more of yourself than of him.
-Romans 8:1-3, 9 (MSG)
The encouragement continues in that my compassion for those who struggle with something as difficult as pornography need the same mercy I was given through Jesus Christ. My sin then is no different then their sin now. Romans 3:24 states,
Out of sheer generosity he put us in right standing with himself. A pure gift. He got us out of the mess we’re in and restored us to where he always wanted us to be. And he did it by means of Jesus Christ.