Many of you are entering the dark world of the injustice of human trafficking for the first time. It can be scary, I know. It’s overwhelming at times to think about the pain in this world; pain so great it can take your breath away. I know the pain of opening your eyes to see and your heart to care and to find that now your heart is broken in a million pieces. It can be difficult to not want to shut out the pain. It can be difficult to stay in these dark places when all we want to do is run for our lives.
Last night, I had the privilege of sitting down with my dear friend, Cathy, and her daughters to have a long talk about human trafficking. Cathy has just recently had her eyes opened to this atrocity and she is choosing daily to not look away. She is getting involved by calling friends and family and telling them that slavery still exists and asking them to each ask 10 friends to give $10 to fight it. As we sat around the dinner table into the late hours of night, the girls had many questions. They wanted to know what slavery looks like today and how people are treated. They wanted to know why there are people in this world who think it’s ok to own other people. They wanted to know every aspect of trafficking. There questions were endless, but it was the look in their eyes that pulled at my soul. They cared. Little Abby’s eyes got huge as she considered the ramifications of people owning little girls (we did not explain what the girls were used for, FYI). Hosanna wanted details on prevention, rescue, restoration and reintegration. Ellie asked insightful questions about the intricacies of healing.
As I saw these precious, tender hearts break for the horrors faced by little boys and girls across the world, my heart broke. I got afraid, truthfully. Afraid that I had crushed their childlike sense of wonder and amazement at this world. Afraid that they would want to run, screaming from this dark alley. So I shared this story….
“Girls,” I started gently “Let’s say that you have a flashlight in your hand, but it is turned off.” They each nod that they are following along, but wondering where this is going. “What would happen if you walked into a VERY dark and scary room? Would it be ok for you to think ‘oh wow. It’s dark and scary in here and it makes me want to cry’” They all nod that of course it would be ok to think that. “But would you need to run screaming from that room?” They immediately knew the answer to this question. “No!” they practically shouted, “Just turn on your flashlight.”
The girls each decided that they wanted to be a part of She’s Worth It. They want to go door to door telling people about slavery and asking people for $10 to fight it. We shared the vision of She’s Worth It and how they could use their voices to each raise $100 by asking 10 people to give $10. Hosanna did not like this plan. She does not want to be stopped at $100. She wants to do more. These 3 precious girls are armed with their flashlights and are ready to storm the dark places wielding their weapons and shine forth into the darkness. They are are determined to use their lights to shine in the darkest places because they believe She’s Worth It.
“If you are generous with the hungry
and start giving yourselves to the down-and-out,
Your lives will begin to glow in the darkness,
your shadowed lives will be bathed in sunlight.
I will always show you where to go.
I’ll give you a full life in the emptiest of places—
firm muscles, strong bones.
You’ll be like a well-watered garden,
a gurgling spring that never runs dry.
You’ll use the old rubble of past lives to build anew,
rebuild the foundations from out of your past.
You’ll be known as those who can fix anything,
restore old ruins, rebuild and renovate,
make the community livable again.” —Isaiah 58