Calling Evil Out: One Man’s Stand

I never meant to be in a fight, let alone one played out across the world. But this one has crossed the ocean, jumped the divide, and struck a chord right in the heartland of America, the heartland of my very soul.

I wanted to spend the rest of my days writing about thoughtful pursuits, faith, and hope. I wanted to be a man of peace that would age gracefully, allowing the gray hair to take over my head one hair at a time. I wanted to fade away and not burn out.

But what has happened to me over the last two months cannot be overlooked. By providence, by divine selection, by forces way out of my control, I am now fully engaged in a world I never imagined.2015-04-27 16.02.02

I’ve read the headlines, just like you. I’ve turned my head when I’ve seen the men kneeling on the shores of Tripoli, declaring their faith even as the life was drained from their neck. I’ve hashtagged and prayed for the hundreds of innocent Nigerian girls snatched from their school, pretending they were in a good place, hiding in the forest. I’ve chalked the fighting up to civil war or politics gone astray.

Consumed with work, and summer vacation plans, and a car with an overdue oil change, I went about my life. After all, it wasn’t my fight.

But in these last two months, I’ve been ushered into  this modern-day stand for righteousness. I’ve been to Jordan and interviewed dozens of ordinary citizens, as well as senior government officials and underground church workers. I’ve stood with Ethiopians who are crying out for justice, for someone to care. I’ve befriended a woman whose daughter is a Muslim convert and they a working toward peace. I’ve met good, decent Muslims who abhor what’s happening. In the past few weeks I’ve met with Middle Easterners – both Muslim and Christian – who tremble.

IMG_20150413_130939066I’ve taken it all in – wondering, waiting on God. What does it all mean? Why now? Why me? I’ve finding that my presuppositions and presumptions have fallen. My mind is changing. And the words are coming.

This fight is against evil. And I’m now a soldier.

Here’s the truth. Don’t look away. ISIS-ISIL-Daesch is rolling through countries like Iraq and Syria, but also Ethiopia, Nigeria, and Tunisia. They find villages that are predominately Christian or Shia Muslim. They overrun the local populace and often behead the men. They take the women as sex prizes, and then capture the children – boys and girls – to be sold as slaves. This is not crazy-eyed fundamentalist talk. This is real.

Our government wants us to believe the battle of the day is against climate change, or police power, or those who make too much money. I cannot utter one more word about such things when the rest of the world is gripped by fear.

LaideyChurch (13)For the men who are reading, I want to appeal to you right now. Are we content to rely on politics, for the UN or some other power to make a change? Will we stand for the females who are suffering here? These are our women in the family of humanity and this is our call.  Is your passion college football, the latest smartphone, your workout routine? Really? Is that you are called to do?

My hat is off to the good women who are engaged in the fight, using the power of the pen and that should make us men sit up – even stand up! Ann Voskamp, who peered into the eyes of eight-year old Iraqi girls, just barely spared by from sex traffickers, and has rocked the world with her revelations. Jennifer Dukes Lee has rallied her women of courage. And now it’s time for us.

What about the Muslim question?

I think far too many of us are afraid to say something because of the Muslim question. In this society we don’t speak truth because we will be called intolerant or judgmental, so we mumble nonsense.

We don’t want to talk about this issue because the barbarians claim to be the true Islamics, hoping to restore purity to their faith by fear. It’s true — they claim to be Muslims, but do Muslims themselves embrace them?

Simply because they call on Allah doesn’t mean they represent an entire faith group. Wiping the earth with blood doesn’t splatter every person who worships under a crescent on the roof. Like many others before them, they are using their religion as a rallying cry.

I hate it when people think Christians are judgmental, or ignorant, or divisive because of the acts of a few. As a group, we turn away snake handlers, Fred Phelps and those who kill unbelievers.

I think there’s a middle road. IMG_20150411_205659012

I’ve had conversations with more than 100 Muslims in the last month, and not one of them has agreed with this savagery. They don’t secretly cheer the traffickers, the rapists, the murderers. Sure, you can pull proof texts out of their Koran, even as we have our own texts from Scriptures that are terrible to read on their own. You can cite polls about those who believe in the extremes of Sharia Law or honor killings or any other radical element.  But by and large, Muslims are afraid of these people too. 

To be honest, I believe much of the world has ignored this issue because Christians have often been the targets. When a cartoonist was killed, the world was aghast that free speech would be stymied. But when thousands of Christian women are passed around as sex objects, we collectively yawn.

So let’s for a second set aside the religion of the attackers and the attacked and start to talk honestly.

Calling evil by its name

If you are a atheist or an unbeliever, you shouldn’t clap because Christians are “getting their due” (someone sent me an e-mail with this gem) Yes, we had our Crusades a millennium ago. Yes, we have used the cross inappropriately at times. But can you set that aside, and can I speak to your heart? These are crimes against humans. We need you to stand.

If you are a Muslim, you are welcome to this battle, shoulder to shoulder with all us, without fear of retribution or being called a sell-out. This is no time to review a thousands years of division. We need your voice.

If you are a Christian, you shouldn’t broad-brush an entire religion for the sins of a few (We hate that, don’t we, when fools blow up abortion clinics or protest funerals or say stupid things in the name of Jesus.) Yes, you are offended and threatened by the cries of this army. But we need you to take a stand, even it’s  side by side with a Muslim if that’s what it takes.

Once we get past the rhetoric , then perhaps we will have the will and wisdom to do the right thing. But it begins with all of us to call this thing evil.

So here is my stand and if I have to stand alone, then so be it..

MacabaChurch (9)

"jesusneverexisted.comOf course you could read your bible. Ecclesiastes 9:5 No reward! No after-life! No Heaven! ..."

Thoughts and Prayers are Great {But ..."
"Shame, you say? There is far more that enough shame to go around!! I strive ..."

Thoughts and Prayers are Great {But ..."
"For some people, that phrase works for them, it lets them know that people are ..."

Thoughts and Prayers are Great {But ..."
"Yes, I agree. Instead of saying something, just do it. Actions speak louder than words. ..."

Thoughts and Prayers are Great {But ..."

Browse Our Archives

Follow Us!


What Are Your Thoughts?leave a comment
  • http://sandraheskaking.com Sandra Heska King

    You… here for such a time as this. Counting the cost. Powerful words here, David.

  • http://sheilalagrand.com Sheila Seiler Lagrand

    I’m speechless. Sharing. God bless you, David.

  • http://countingmyblessings.com Deb Wolf

    Thank you for sharing your perspective on this. I’ve wondered if your thoughts changed as you traveled. The challenge is important. May we willingly take up the call to pay attention, pray, and move as the Lord leads. Blessings David.

  • http://threewaylight.blogspot.com/ Jody Lee Collins

    It’s hard to argue truth with someone that’s seen the facts firsthand. I don’t think you’re alone David. Thank you.

  • http://www.journeysingrace.com Dawn

    Powerful words, David. May God open hearts and doors through them.

    Bless you,

    Dawn

  • http://dianatrautwein.com Diana Trautwein

    Thank you, David. There are millions of peace-loving people of all faiths who will, hopefully, stand together in this fight. It is intolerable.

  • http://www.theregoi.com Floyd

    Well said, David. You made excellent points and have stirred my passion and ire. In the end it is about love… and the Beatitudes are ringing in my ears. Praying for guidance.

  • Pingback: Top 4 Posts-Christian Life - Everyday Servant()

  • http://www.everdayservant.com Bob Jackson

    David… Thank you for taking a personal stand against evil and issuing a call for all us to do the same. I have shared your post in my weekly list of the Top 4 Christian Posts

  • Lynn Morrissey

    David, powerful. passionate. persuasive. You shed new light and cause us to thnk and lament and to put away those broad brushes wherever we paint with them. I have had to do a lot of thinking (and repenting) about this. Our precious daughter attends school with Muslim students whom she loves, who love her and look out for her, and with whom she has broken bread and shared the love of Christ. As an art major, she took a personal stand for not doing “nude art,” and her teachers respected her (though didn’t agree with her). Amazingly, Muslim women students came to our daughter in tears and were so grateful that now, thanks to her and her quiet trailblazing, they could follow in her footsteps and do the same thing she had done in the art classes. Soon, we will be taking her friend from Saudi Arabia to dinner. It seems to me that the best way to understand *people* is across a table, one on one. I remember my former USO days, when a young Muslim man, who only spoke French, was delivered at my agency’s doorstep, because the Airport Authority thought the USO would help. So I invited the young man to my husband’s birthday party, and he and I spoke French and ate Greek food at a restaurant with my family. We became friends, and he was one of the nicest, sweetest, gentlest young men I’ve ever met. That was over twenty years ago, and I’m sad that we lost touch….still touch we did–heart to heart–the only way humans were meant to. So thank you for bringing me back to these truths, and for taking a stand. I appreciate you, David.

    In Him,

    Lynn