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All you need is LOvE…

09 Mar

This past week was a bit overwhelming. You start to dig deeper into human trafficking and it can get discouraging.  
We were made aware of a group working throughout Europe bringing girls from Thailand and dispersing them throughout red light districts in Belgium and Netherlands. These girls (ages 13-15) are not kidnapped, their families send them willingly to a “better developed country” to go to school and work. Once they arrive with signed papers from their parents, they are housed in brothels and sold for an hourly fee. They are not technically there against their will, since they came willingly…just under very different terms. This is one of many similar stories. It is horrifying as you see pictures of sweet, innocent girls being traded and treated as a commodity.  
As we continued to talk with organizations we will be visiting and they directed us to other resources, we found something more disturbing. Of the more than 40 million cases of trafficking reported, a mere 9,071 cases ever reach prosecution. That means that within this injustice, less than 1% of perpetrators ever face any prosecution. Rescuing those trapped in human trafficking is almost the easy part. Convicting those who are exploiting women and children is the tricky part. It takes the willingness of those who were trafficked to testify, the local police and many other branches of government to bring justice. Within a $150 Billion industry, the corruption is at every level. (There are some great organizations working within the system to bring justice…more on that in an upcoming blog!)
Human trafficking is a big problem. And part of me kinda wishes I never even heard about the whole thing…or that I could just put a red “X” on my hand and feel ok about raising awareness in that way. But see, we have sat with these girls and shared ice cream with them. They are real, and the problem is all to real. Raising awareness is good. Fighting for justice is good. But at the end of the day the enormity of the problem left me feeling overwhelmed. I told Don that I want to make sure to budget an “ice cream fund” for our trip. (Because I think ice cream is the universal language of love!) And that is what I want the girls we meet to know…we love them. Not because we are raising awareness or because we are fighting a social justice issue, but because they are precious to Jesus and He has stirred our hearts to love them.  
I read a verse this week…”Do not despise these small beginnings..” What a perspective! We don’t need to find the solution to human trafficking, but we can love the person in front of us and buy some ice cream to share. God is in the business of miracles through willing hearts and seemingly small beginnings.  
“To the world you may be one person; but to one person you may be the world.” Dr. Suess. That is it…we are not out to change a corrupt system, but we are out to change the life of someone stuck in bondage. We know Jesus and follow His example…meet people where they are at and love them. “Sometimes the questions are complicated and the answers are simple.” Dr. Suess.
To donate to the “ice cream fund” send a check to: The Yada Project. 7734 Bittersweet Ct. Middleton, WI 53562

 
2 Comments

Posted by on March 9, 2019 in Uncategorized

 

2 responses to “All you need is LOvE…

  1. Lisa

    March 9, 2019 at 2:36 am

    Amen! Love this.
    “I read a verse this week…”Do not despise these small beginnings..” What a perspective! We don’t need to find the solution to human trafficking, but we can love the person in front of us and buy some ice cream to share. God is in the business of miracles through willing hearts and seemingly small beginnings”

     
  2. Fred, of marginal note

    March 9, 2019 at 11:20 pm

    HI Beth & Don –

    Indeed, you have stepped into deep waters of injustice and exploitation! As you know, you are not alone in this.

    Take a look at Eden Ministries https://edenministry.org/ — One of the organizers of this, Wendy Eldridge, was a Singaporean international student at UW Madison in the 1980s and was a good friend of my first wife, Bobbi.

    Also look at Ellilta International http://www.ellilta.org/ — We got to know the founder, Serawit (a.k.a. “Cherry”) when we were in Ethiopia (see the “About Us” page)

    Finally, the North American conference of the International Christian Alliance on Prostitution https://www.icapglobal.org/icapevents — meeting this year in Missouri. Formerly, it met at the Green Lake Conference Center, and both Wendy and Cherry attended (Cherry several times.

    Peace and courage be yours,

    Fred

    Fred Everson

    600 Wentworth Ave., South St. Paul, MN 55075

    fjeverson63@gmail.com – 608-386-5929

     

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