DressemberDay2_And in His Name, all oppression shall cease.

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Lyric of the Day: And in His Name, All Oppression Shall Cease. 

“O Holy Night”Lyrics by French Poet, Placide Cappeau

Dressember Day #2:

Dress: Scrapbook Originals

Coat by BB Dakota

Scarf homemade by my Mommy 🙂

Shoes by Gap

Purse by Steve Madden

Earlier this evening, I got to attend a special Christmas event which officially makes it the Christmas season in my opinion. Sipping apple cider, buying homemade Christmas cookies and listening to Christmas Carols sung by a group dressed in Charles Dickens’ era attire is my kinda party!

While the carolers sang one of my most beloved songs, O Holy Night, even though I’ve heard that song a thousand times before (and probably at least 4 times on the radio today alone), I was especially struck by the following lyric: “And in His name, all oppression shall cease.” One of the most interesting parts of my Dressember challenge so far (and it’s only day two) is how my awareness and perspective on so many things, even lyrics I’ve heard a thousand times, has drastically changed.

When I was in college, I was very involved in the campaign to “Save Darfur”, a country which at the time was experiencing one of the worst genocides of the 21st century. In all my efforts and work in spreading awareness about the situation in Darfur, one of the tag lines for our campaign was “What happens in Darfur, happens to us”. In fact, I even have a safety pin of that tagline pinned to a purse I use all the time as a reminder of a truth that Martin Luther King Jr. wrote so eloquently in his “Letter from a Birmingham Jail”{1963}

“Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere. We are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied in a single garment of destiny. Whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly. Never again can we afford to live with the narrow, provincial “outside agitator” idea.”

In the fight against modern-day-slavery and for international justice around the world, this wisdom is as true as ever. What happens to the 13-year-old sex slave in a brothel in Cambodia, is happening to us here in our suburban homes in Southern California. Although it may seem like an indirect correlation, the root cause is the same. The objectification of women anywhere, leads to the oppression of women everywhere. The women I see in an eating disorder treatment center in Los Angeles, are oppressed by the same objectification as the “sex tourism slaves” commissioned to “tour” tourists around  Sao Paolo, Brazil. Despite my efforts for this daunting task of helping to fight against slavery in our world, the most important lesson is the truth is that the residual effects of this oppression, which may or may not be eliminated completely in our lifetime despite our greatest hopes or worst fears, on an individual can only be solved with one name, and that name is not Obama, and that name is not United Nations International Court of Justice. That name is Jesus. And He has called us to be set free, it’s the desire of His heart: “You were called to be set free”- Galatians 5:13. Physically. Emotionally. Spiritually. Mentally. “He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners,”- Isaiah 61:1

And what strikes me the most is that this Jesus, whose birth we celebrate this Dressember, requires us two things that we can do to help set free every physical, spiritual and emotional chain and restore any broken life, no matter where it is on this earth:

1. Act Justly (Micah 6:8)

2. Love your neighbor as yourself (Mark 12:31)

The injustice is overwhelming. And although the reality is that we cannot do everything, we can do something.

May we think globally this Dressember. May we pray. May our hearts break and our tears flow. May our tears make a change. May we echo Martin Luther King Jr.’s sentiment and replace our names, our addresses, and throw our lives behind this statement:

“I cannot sit idly by in Atlanta and not be concerned about what happens in Birmingham.”

I cannot sit idly by in ____ and not be concerned about what happens around the world.

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