Crying Out for the Kingdom
By Nathaniel Musson, SPU Sophomore
The year is 2009. The global count of humans that are in the slave trade is 200 million, writes Benjamin Nolot, in The Battlefront of the 21st Century. And 70–75 percent of them are in the sex-trafficking industry. But how can the oft quoted number of 27 million can’t be correct, given that the worst countries won’t report the truth about slavery within their borders?
“[The U.S. State Department is] willing to publicly grant passing grades to countries that are the worst offenders … it’s a missed opportunity for historic leadership,” said Gary Haugen, president of International Justice Mission, in 2002.
The statistics are shocking. And it should cause us to tremble if we actually believe in a God of justice. Human trafficking is one of many concerns that Kingdom Cry, an SPU-based student prayer coalition, brings before the throne of grace. We believe that God actually wants to bring his kingdom at our request to end injustice.
An Answer From God — in a Newspaper
The first Kingdom Cry gathering took place on June 1, 2008, when about 40 SPU students gathered on campus in Martin Square to cry out for a miraculous breakthrough in the city of Seattle concerning human trafficking and prostitution. God took us seriously. I don’t think that any of us expected what The Seattle Times reported the next day.
“Exactly 12 hours after we finished, the feds busted two of the top ringleaders of prostitution and racketeering in our city who they hadn't been able to pin down for 50 years,” says SPU senior Melissa Warren. “Three strip clubs were simultaneously shut down in Pierce and King counties!”
It was God, says Warren, who called her to found Kingdom Cry in 2007. “He made it clear to me that if the church in Seattle is unified in crying out to God in prayer, he will break down the walls of injustice,” said Warren at another Kingdom Cry gathering in February 2009. “The goal is to partner with ministries in prayer at gatherings like this, but also follow with action in person and through financial support.”
An offering of $300 was taken at the February event to give to ministries seeking to stop gang violence — a large sum for a fairly small gathering of college students.
More Causes to Pray for Justice
At the February event, with its emphasis on gang violence, we came behind a ministry called D.A.D.S. (Divine Alternatives for Dads Services) founded by Marvin and Jeanett Charles, an African-America couple from Seattle’s Rainier Valley. They provide fathers from all walks of life with the knowledge, encouragement, and support they need to become positive, active and productive fathers, explains the couple.
When Marvin Charles emphasized the need for fathering, he called up one of the students, looked him in the eye and said, “You are my beloved son, in whom I am well pleased,” quoting God’s affirmation of Christ at his baptism, as told in the Gospels. He explained, “An older man said that to me years ago and that was what I needed — validation. He didn’t come from my background, and he didn’t have my skin color, but in Christ there isn’t a difference!”
As the group prayed together, it was amazing to see blacks, whites, Latinos, and Asians locking arms in solidarity against social injustice.
A Global Movement
And something that I think is immensely encouraging, especially in light of many global crises, is that what we are doing at SPU is not isolated whatsoever. It is part of a much larger global prayer movement sweeping the nations. I am friends with college students from Sweden, Germany, South Africa, South Korea, and China who are involved in similar movements.
Over the ages the prayer has remained the same, it is, as the prophet Amos cried out, “Let justice roll down like waters, and righteousness like an ever-flowing stream.”
Nate Musson is an SPU sophomore, majoring in political science. Raised in Northeastern Washington, he describes himself as passionate about justice issues. He enjoys the outdoors, meditation, study of the Scriptures, and currently co-leads a young church plant at SPU.
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