Join me for a great conversation in which I’m asking just 3 women just 3 questions about living justly. Today meet Amber Robinson — a speaker for Compassion International, the author of Mercy Rising: Simple Ways to Practice Justice and Compassion, and a talented pianist. I’m so privileged to count Amber as one of my friends.
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I never set out to be “passionate about biblical justice.” In college, I took a spiritual gifts test and scored high on a couple gifts, medium on many others, and glaringly low on one gift – and that gift was mercy. So it’s ironic that many people say that justice is my “thing”, when it is obviously something that I don’t come by naturally.
Through a very long trial with health issues, God revealed to me a lot of selfishness. I realized that my world was all about me.
I began reading Scripture more earnestly – I was amazed by all of the commands to help those in our society who face injustice, and knew I needed to act on these commands. It was very hard to reorient my thinking because we are taught, even in our faith culture, to focus on ourselves and our nuclear families.
I am passionate about my work with Compassion International and slavery prevention because it works. I have seen the lives of children all around the world changed. Despite the population increases in poor countries, we are turning the tide on poverty.
Beyond the help for others, we are really helping ourselves. It is an emotionally, spiritually, physically healing journey to die to self. I feel a joy and peace that I never had before.
I feel like my life has more clarity and focus and integrity. My old thought pattern was, Once I get my finances, health, etc. in order, then I can do justice, but God’s way is this: Die to yourself, obey me, and I will give you all the rest.
We can’t give in to the lie that the people who are immersed in this kingdom work have an easier life in some way and that is why they are involved. We all have big reasons not to do this. But we can get past these excuses and start living the abundant life promised to us.
We have a choice to make about how we will view God. We see a servant in Matthew 25 who viewed God as a harsh taskmaster, buried his talent, and did not make an impact on the kingdom.
In contrast, David and John saw Christ as a gentle, good leader. They described him as a shepherd. There were two common shepherding techniques in the Middle East: drive the sheep from behind or lead them from the front and let them follow your voice. In Scripture we see the tenderness of the Shepherd leading the sheep from the front, finding them when they are lost, and leading them to food, drink, shelter, safety, and rest.
If our view of Christ is a tender leader, then we will have all we need. We won’t be doing things for others out of a sense of “have to,” and we won’t need to fear we will have to do it on our own.
We were made to do this work with Christ and with others. Humbling ourselves to ask for prayer covering and making sure we are working with others we trust ensures we are not out there all by ourselves and being drained dry.
3. What are three meaningful things a person can do to live justly?
REST: For those who have not been involved in justice, the first step is to stop and rest. Rest in him. Get really close to him. Hear his voice through Scripture. Go back to your first love. The passionate leaders and workers in the justice movement – the ones that last – are close to Christ and his Word, and know how to pace themselves. Pray for God to show you where he is working and how you can join him in his work.
PRUNE: The rest will give you the courage to cut. We cannot be everything to everyone. We cannot hold on to every hobby, social engagement, and activity for the kids, and have the space to dive into kingdom work. For me this has been an evolution over years. Every No makes space for a better Yes.
ACT: Some easy places to start . . .
- Goodsearch.com – a search engine that donates to the charity of your choice every time you search online.
- Chainstorereaction.com and slaveryfootprint.org – sites that help you change your shopping habits to end support for sweatshops.
- Compassion.com – an organization fighting child poverty and preventing slavery.
- Love146.org and ijm.org – organizations helping to free slaves and bring an end to human trafficking.
- Good.is – a news feed for innovation that is changing the world.
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