There are so many things I love about the people of Cambodia and the places that feel like home now here in Phnom Penh. So many things that make me smile and even laugh out loud, make me curious.
But there is darkness here and it makes me sad. A pub in the red light district of Phnom Penh named Heart of Darkness, where untold evil happens night after night. Children begging because someone else knows it will pull at our heart strings and the child will get next to nothing. I talked to a woman begging today near the market, and she wouldn’t look me in the eye, only mumbling. Do you know your worth, dear one? A man on the corner today invited me to his home and was willing to pay me money, a moment when I wished I didn’t understand Khmer. Don’t you want to be set free, made alive? It made me angry today, seeing these things. Protest and redeem they taught us at MTI. But how to protest all of this darkness, how to redeem all of this evil? Only The Lord.
We sat at Sisters, our favorite cafe near the market, a mocha smoothie soothing my anger. A cafe that offers hope to women wanting to leave a slavery to prostitution, giving them life and grace and a new path. The girls there have worked their way into my heart with their smiles and laughter and grace for my language attempts. It is Jesus who redeems, His light shining here that can penetrate the darkness. So while there is not much I can do, I pray. I smile a lot and try to talk to people when I can. I ask that God brings true, lasting transformation here and that He can use this weak vessel to accomplish His purposes in this place.
Isaiah 51:14-15 The cowering prisoners will soon be set free, they will not die in their dungeon, nor will they lack bread. For I am The Lord your God who churns up the sea so that its waves roar- The Lord Almighty is His name.