Two nights ago I had a very disturbing dream. I had rented a car and was at a full service gas station. At first it was rather nice having a friendly person fill my tank and air my tires for me, but at the very end, I received an incredible shock when I looked at the price of the gasoline. The full tank cost over a thousand dollars. My shock led to fear, then anger, and, at the end I did what real men supposedly never do, I cried.
I think that God may be trying to tell me something. If you haven’t read my post “Road Rage” yet, then you need to. If there is something I have learned from my travels around the world it is that we in America really are clueless when it comes to the devastating spiritual, emotional, and psychological effects of abject poverty.
And yet, what do we do about it? We may give pocket change to a few charities here and there, but the abiding principle usually is-out of sight, out of mind.
Here is an issue that we evangelicals hear very little about in our churches: social justice. Yes, we hear a lot about how not to be poor (e.g..if you will only tithe and give offerings, then God will bless you so that you won’t be poor), but we hear very little about the social, historical, economic, and political conditions that create conditions for poverty around the world. There are historical reasons for this by the way, the chief reason being that these issues are often associated with the political left (although, to his credit, Pat Robertson was, in fact, a leading advocate for third world debt relief at the turn of the century) and the left is, of course, associated with secularism.
That’s too bad because history shows that it was primarily liberal Christians that were behind the civil rights movement. It’s time for “judgment to begin in the house of God.” There are issues that affect the world that evangelicals had better not miss the boat on. One is third world debt relief. I would suggest to my readers to educate yourselves on this issue. Here is a place to start. It’s time that we get on the right side of history.