Sunday, 6 July 2014

Reflecting Back Looking Ahead Living In The Present

It is Saturday June 28 2014.
Thinking about the yard work I have to do I may have let out a small sigh.
Things I should have started in early May I am starting now.

This is a small section of a large backyard over run by weeds.
As I started pulling these weeds in my backyard I thought of one of the reason`s why I am always behind yard work at this time of year.

I thought to myself "in a perfect world I would not run a full marathon, and two weeks later help organize a walkathon." In a perfect world these events would be spread further apart allowing me the chance to recover fully from the marathon and to be able do my share of the yard work.
Yet, in a perfect world little girls would not be sold into a life of sexual slavery in Cambodia!
So until my world becomes perfect. I will always be playing catch up with yard work at this time of year going forward.

Even mundane tasks such as pulling weeds have their rewards. As I perform this task I can see my favourite possession from the past. It is not a medal I have had hung around my neck after finishing a particular race, no it is my 13 rocks picked up a few years ago on my long runs in training for a marathon. This was my hardest marathon ever. The rocks to me represented 13 girls in Cambodia, rescued from a life of slavery. If I did not finish this race the events on June 7 at Erindale park this year are not possible with my involvement.

For those interested the story is called Just 13 girls, last year I put it on my blog. 

The final total raised for the 5km walkathon is $43 108 I set an aggressive goal of $20 052 and somehow God was able to more than double it. 
Thank you everyone for your support especially Paul. I hope to take the Summer off of some things, especially new writings, yet I will be updating my blog with some stories written a few years ago realizing I have a new audience.

This is the first. I hope to release two more before September when I will be hopefully back in the swing of things.

It took me a week in my spare time to pull all the weeds, time to move on to other projects.


I titled this Two because it is a story of two different people, two different cultures, two different sexes, two different lives, and possibly two different eternal destinations.
My prayer for the future is that my daughter`s could live to see the day that the "Marys" of this world cease to exist. That is a day when girls have childhoods as God intended them to have, not the perversion that is forced upon them so often in the world that I live in.
This story came together during a Sunday church service a few years ago. This in itself was highly improbable as my mindset was anything but creative that day.

My youngest daughter was very ill and had a fever for the past two days. If these conditions were present that Sunday our family was taking her to the doctor.

She still had her fever on Sunday morning, but she and the rest of my family were sleeping soundly so the trip to the doctor would have to wait until after I attended church.

I also was not really looking forward to the service as the pastor had announced it was a service dealing with how to raise up Godly offspring.

In the past The Holy Spirit had used this pastor to point out areas in which I could improve on raising our children.

As I drove to church that morning I was hoping above anything else that this was not such a day for me.
There was also a baby dedication that morning. As I watched that proud father pass his daughter to the pastor to be blessed, and before the end of the next song I thought up this story. 

Although it took me significantly longer to write everything out, this story was finished beginning to end in my head in about 10 minutes, usually I change some of the words around in things I have written in the past. This is virtually unchanged from that Sunday.

She was born in Svay Park in 1995. Her verbally abusive father told her she was an accident many times as she grew up. She was the oldest of  four girls which added to her father`s wrath. 
Translated into English her name was Mary, the same as the Messiah's mother.
Her family never had enough food to eat. Her father found work occasionally as a fishermen. The best fish were sold at a market that supplied one of the hotels outside of Svay Park with fresh fish.  Later in life Mary would meet some of  the men from this very hotel in a very different way.

Health care was unheard of in her village. If a child became ill there was a good chance they would not survive. Although it was supposed to be a democratic nation most of the politicians were corrupt, the police force only served the rich and affluent people in her Country. Families like Mary`s were actually terrified of the police, and with good reason.
The only happy memories of Mary`s childhood where when her aunt would visit. Her aunt was called a "born again." 

Mary was very young at the time but she remembers placing her head into her aunt`s lap and listening to stories of Jesus. Her aunt told her that Jesus had given up his place in Heaven to come to earth to save people. Mary felt an incredible warmth flooding through her body as her aunt would talk passionately about this Jesus.
When Mary turned eight a man came to the house and argued with her father. They were discussing money but she couldn`t understand what they were arguing about. This went on for three weeks.
Then the day her life changed! One day she came home and found all her belongings packed into a little bag. The man pointed his finger at her and told her you have been bought I own you now. You are going to a new home to meet other little girls. As you can guess Mary`s father sold her to a pimp to pay off a debt. 

The pimp did indeed take her to a new home to meet other little girls. Mary`s new home was a brothel that men from other Countries liked using, as the girls were a bit younger and thus less experienced than some of the other brothels.
In the Gospels it says Jesus was spit on, Jesus was beaten, Jesus was mocked, Jesus was humiliated, before being put on the Cross. 

In the brothel Mary was spit on, Mary was burned, Mary was tortured, Mary was beaten, Mary was mocked, Mary was humiliated, and Mary was raped. She was raped many times by many different men. Her pain and shame was not measured in days, but years. 
One day rolled into the next. She never had a good day, only terrible and even worse days. Her sixteenth birthday came and went, she didn`t even know it.
Mary felt different now.  Although she always was thin she had been losing weight. She had trouble keeping her food down. One day a Doctor came to see her. Mary didn`t know it but one of  her customers had left her with a gift he had given her HIV Aids.
The next day Mary was forced to leave the brothel, for many years she had dreamed of being rescued, or leaving her prison. However now Mary was terrified as she had not been outside in the last eight years. Although the brothel was hell on earth it was the only place  that Mary knew.
Mary made her bed beside the garbage dump. She would have starved long ago but a baker in town took pity on her and brought her bread and a tin cup of water every night.
Mary woke one morning feeling very different, she was even weaker today. In her heart she felt that the end was very close. She was seventeen and looked fifty.

Although her body had literally wasted away, she felt a warmth surging through her that she had last felt when her Aunt had visited.
That night Mary passed away.
The kind baker took her frail body and wrapped it in a blanket and dug a shallow grave for her.
Mary awoke to the most beautiful noise she had ever heard. She had lived her whole life without hearing singing. Her Aunt told her later that this song was a song of celebration where thousands upon thousands of Angels sing with joy for the one lost sheep who had come home.
Next Mary saw a radiant whiteness walking towards her. She saw it was a man, strangely she was not afraid.

As the man came closer Mary looked into his eyes she saw compassion, kindness, tenderness, goodness, and most of all she saw love. She now understood that the warmth she had felt with her Aunt had came from this man.
  The man looked her in the eye and spoke:
  Blessed are the poor in spirit,
  for theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven.
  Blessed are those who mourn,
  for they will be comforted.
  He went on to say:
Mary I created you in your mother`s womb you were no accident. I created you in my image. I numbered the hairs on your head before I set the foundation of the world into place.
I have Loved you with an everlasting Love.
Mary I tell you the truth, today you have entered into paradise to be with me.
He was born in Toronto, Canada in 1973. He was the joy of his family as his father had always wanted a boy and now he had one.  As many parents in this part of the world do he was given a name from the Bible, he was named John.
As he grew up he was treated with dignity, and respect.
One of his father`s favourite saying was the world is your oyster"  He was told to stand up for his rights, and to make sure that no one took advantage of him. Another statement he often heard from his father was "only the strong survive."
His family was upper to middle class for Canada. This put his family in the top ten percent of wealth when compared to the rest of the world.
He had access to free hospital care. He was never hungry.  Although far from perfect he grew up in a Country with a democratic process, he had a right to vote. 
When he turned sixteen his father bought him a car.
When he was eighteen he was accepted at the University of Toronto. He graduated top of his class and choose a career with a top accounting firm. He attended a local church.
John had just recently celebrated his 40th birthday. He was well on his way to achieving his dreams. He thought of how proud his father and his friends were of his successes. He had recently been promoted to partner. 
On the surface he had everything that he had been told would make him happy, there was just one problem he wasn`t.
Both of these people are fictionally characters. I know a few "Johns" and I suspect many people I know who have been to Cambodia have met many "Marys."

One day I looked at a picture of skeletons and skulls from the Killing Fields of Cambodia.
A strange thought entered my head.

I saw the men of North America as those bones. They have flesh, but in a lot of areas that God is concerned about these men are dead, they just don`t realize it. 
I thought the girls in the brothels of Cambodia are prisoners, but so are these men. The girl`s prison bars are made of concrete and iron, the men`s are more spiritual in nature, and may be more difficult to escape from.
My bible calls Jonah a reluctant prophet, in some ways I can relate to him.
God`s heart is with both of the fictional characters I wrote about.  While mine is with the Mary`s of this world. When I feel led to do something to help the girls in the brothels I jump up like Isiah did when the Lord asked who could he send, I immediately reply send me.
I find it tragic beyond comprehension what happens to girls like the Mary I wrote about.

While men born into a Country like Canada in which we have won the lottery of life (I include myself) cannot seem to figure out what is important in life are at best foolish, and pathetic, but in my eyes not tragic.
Lately I have been asking for God to open my eyes to see people as Jesus sees them.
Last week the story of the King who gave various talents to the servants came to my mind.
I believe with everything that I am the fictional Mary I wrote about will end up in Heaven.
I know Jesus`s character was made up of goodness, grace, compassion, justice, and mercy. I also know that it says in the Bible that Jesus has the final say on Judgement day.

If I believe in his word (the sermon on the mount.)  Then I conclude that the girls in brothels will be at the wedding feast.
What is sobering to me is the result for the man who wasted his talents, and the second half of the Beatitudes.
  But woe to you who are rich
  for you have had your comfort.
  Woe to you who are well fed now,
  for you will go hungry.
  Woe to you who laugh,
  for you will mourn and weep.
I have came to the realization that a lot of people in North America are in danger of not going to Heaven.
As by the sheer economic benefits that we enjoy in our part of the World. We are indeed like the servant who was given much, I hope that we are not burying our talents in the ground. (so to speak)
So an argument could be made that John`s life was indeed more tragic because he was given everything while he was on earth, but if he missed out on a relationship with Jesus than he may end up spending his eternity without Jesus.
Mary on the other hand was given the worst possible life while on earth. But like the thief on the cross, none of this matters because she is spending her eternity with Jesus.
I end with a question.
Do you know where you are going?



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