As long as I can remember, I felt an urge to help/encourage others. Throughout my life, various scenarios of how this would come into action played out in my head. Just as soon as the ideas came…they left. Never felt confident enough. Voices in my head told me of many reasons I would not succeed. The fear settled in… and the urge quieted. Life went on. I focused on the ‘sure-bets’ in my life: good character, an education and a safe, risk free career.
One Sunday Morning, I sat and listened as the pastor described a horrific scenario of a woman who was sold by her mother at the tender age of 5. What she experienced in her life time was more than any person should have to experience. I sobbed. I had a hard time keeping my emotions at bay. He went on to reiterate that her story was the story of many young girls around the world. I couldn’t help feeling angry, frustrated, sad, fearful. The visions of what a scared young girl must have thought, felt, endured, wreaked havoc on me. The memory of his words resonated with me. I knew I had to help in some way- But how?
I prayed and prayed. The thoughts haunted me. Young girls suffering in such manner! ‘…God, do You hear me? I know the idea of women and girls being used like this, must hurt You more than it hurts me. In Jeremiah 29:11, it states: “ For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.
These girls need a future that does not include abuse. Can you please just make it stop? Save them! Break down walls! Take out your vengeance on the people who keep them in bondage.’ I wondered if my prayers were effective. ‘God if you hear me, I want you to free a girl or a group of girls. Make it public, so that I know you hear me- then, I will know that I am in alignment with your will. I continued to pray. ‘God send someone in their path. Free them!’
Then one day it happened. In the news: Few girls being held captive for years were freed. I wept- tears of joy! I was ecstatic. Thank you God! You heard me! I was saddened and haunted by their experience and elated for their freedom.
Eventually… The familiar voices returned. Was that really an answer to your prayers? Doubt settled in. This was just a coincidence.
‘It doesn’t matter, God saved them!’ I retorted. Visions of what was described as their experience would not leave me. An overwhelming fear of our reality haunted me. I have a young daughter…
The fear was too captivating. The fear of the possibility of an experience like that hitting close to home. The voices got louder. The doubt relentless… I couldn’t focus on it. I couldn’t give myself over to their pain. I moved on to focusing on more positive light hearted issues.
Why did I back away? It was easier to turn away. Just easier to turn the blind eye. What about the people that benefit from the many prayers? I must stop running away from what God wants to make me part of…
So here I am. Resolving to allow the Spirit of God to conform me; to trust that he will lead me in the path he has set forth. Relying on him to give me the strength I need, as I learn of the struggles and make myself available. . Afraid of what I may learn, or the emotions I may feel; but willing to go to war through prayer. I pray that as he leads me, I follow.
I have not been called to dismantle the Human trafficking efforts or end abuse in general- alone. It is God who leads. I have been called to first seek his kingdom and allow him to guide me. If God has given me a sensitive heart towards this issue, a heart that calls me to weep and pray, then I must not shy away. I plan to join the many people who lift their voices.
The Reality of Sexual abuse and human trafficking is appalling to say the least. My prayer is that we join efforts to fight the cause through prayer. Together we can lift our voices for the victims without any. Praying that God continues to free people around the world for His Glory. Whether it is a prayer that you say once or a commitment to continuously pray, I am thankful that you have joined me and countless other people who commit to lifting up the abused around the world through prayer!
The following statistics, taken from the http://www.victimsofcrime.org/library/crime-information-andstatistics, states:
- According to the U.S. Department of State, in 2013, 44,758 victims of human trafficking were identified internationally by foreign governments.4
- According to the same report, in 2013, within the Western Hemisphere (which includes the United States and South America), 7,818 victims were identified.5
Feel free to leave a comment to share your thought or to simply encourage others.