The impossible choice

The headlines alone are enough to make you weep.

Isis in Libya: Families forced to marry girls as young as 12 to fighters for protection as clinics see growing number of miscarriages and STDs

ISIS Sex Slave Price: 1- to 9-Y-O Christian, Yazidi Girls Sold for $172

UN official on life under ISIS: ‘Girls are being stripped naked, examined in slave bazaars’ (and don’t forget the “young woman who was married over 20 times, forced to undergo surgery to restore her virginity at the end of each coerced union”)

ISIS impregnates 9-year-old girl

ISIS seizes key Iraqi city: What happens now? Group uses bulldozers, suicide bombers to take city

Isis seizes Palmyra – live updates: Militants behead men as ancient city falls to terror group

When I read Ann Voskamp’s compelling blog post about her recent trip to Iraq, I was stricken to the heart by her words and photographs. They turned away my eyes from my self-centeredness and forced me to look into the eyes of my suffering sisters and brothers.

I am struggling to find words of my own, but Ann puts it so well. Her flexible use of grammar, instead of annoying me, seems to embody the floundering, grasping-at-straws efforts to put into type the horrific realities of so many people. REAL people, who live and breathe and hope and hurt.

ISIS

I am so thankful for Ann’s responsible blogging, which doesn’t just break your heart and leave you in paralyzed mourning, but presents a story of hope, reminding us that WE CAN fight against the darkness.

We aren’t where we are, to just peripherally care about the people on the margins as some superfluous gesture or token nicety. The exact reason why you are where you are — is to risk everything for those being oppressed out there.

You are where you are — to help others where they are. The reason your hands are where they are in this world — is to give other people in this world a hand.

Because God forbid, you don’t get a roof over your head, food on your table and the safety of no bullets shattering your windows because you deserve more — you only get all that so that you get to serve more.

God forbid, you don’t get to live a comfortable life because you’re better — you only get your life so you get to make someone else’s life better with a bit of comfort.

God forbidyou don’t want to climb a ladder up to the American dream, when you could throw a lifeline down to people living your worst nightmare.This is your possible choice.

I trust Ann’s endorsement and vetting of the Preemptive Love Coalition. They are dedicated to providing funds where needed most, which is currently the people of Ramadi (reference Lynne Hybel’s blog post). There is also a second campaign to provide funds for helping these women to start their own businesses. And I love their commitment to finding solutions “for Iraqis, led by Iraqis.”

Please don’t just hear it from me. Read Ann’s posts for yourself.

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