For the last couple of weeks I have been sharing about Cowardice in our churches and in our culture (here) and (here). Throughout the church’s history we have been silent against a variety of forms of evil and demonstrated a spirit of timidity instead of the courage of Christ in the treatment of the Native Americans, African Americans, and the treatment of the Jewish people in Germany.
Today, there are 300,000 American Children at risk for commercial sexual exploitation, (U.S. Department of Justice) in one of the fastest growing crimes in the world, Child/Human Trafficking (U.S. State Department). It is currently estimated that the trafficking (mostly women and children) of people is a 12 billion dollar a year industry (UNICEF) and the average age of entry for children victimized by the sex trade industry is 12 years old (U.S. Department of Justice).
Here is one story of the horror of the Sex Trafficking Trade from Sasha:
Like many teenage girls Sasha had dreams of becoming a model. With a mixture of excitement and nervousness she answered an ad in her local paper and couldn’t believe her luck when she was told to come and see them the next day. Her interview couldn’t have gone better and to her delight she was offered the job there and then. It would be a fabulous opportunity as the shoot was in another country and she’d never been abroad. Scared her parents would stop her, she decided not to tell them until afterwards and made up a story that she was staying with a friend’s family for a couple of days.
The next day she arrived at the agency and was shown into a van with two other girls. Because they were all quite young they travelled with a chaperone who insisted on taking their passports for safekeeping. The long journey didn’t dampen their excitement and when they eventually arrived at the location they were still too happy to notice that something was wrong. The photographer was waiting for them in the attic of a house and told them to strip. Confused, they thought there must have been a mistake but the chaperone became angry and started threatening them. What followed was a weeklong nightmare for the girls. Held against their will, they were forced to prostitute themselves and had pornographic photography and film made of them.
Back home, Sasha’s parents were frantically searching for her. None of her friends had any information to help trace her and as the days passed they grew more scared for her safety.
Sasha eventually managed to escape her captors but alone and frightened in a strange city with no passport, had no idea how to get home. Too scared to go to the police in case they didn’t believe her and arrested her instead and equally as scared they’d tell her parents the shameful things that had happened to her, she roamed the streets, trapped in a foreign country with no ID. Story taken from (here).
SLAVERY IS ALIVE AND WELL, right here in America today, and it is a new form of slavery — one that currently has more slaves than existed during the entire time period of the Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade! The estimates are somewhere around 27 million people, with our own country as the second highest destination of these slaves!!!
Jesus, summed up His purpose on earth when He said, The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim liberty to the captives and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty those who are oppressed.
I believe our country was founded on the principles in this verse and regardless of whether you are a Christian, atheist, liberal or conservative, as an American, you have an obligation, no I take that back, you have the honor of being a part of this solution.
As Americans we should be the type of men and women who stand up and proclaim liberty to the captives and bring liberty to the oppressed. The only question left is will you be the one who like William Wilberforce made a stand on behalf of others and make the difference in the life of a young girl or lady like Sasha? In other words will you embrace courage or cowardice?
If you are interested in helping in the destruction of the Sex Slave Trade and Human Trafficking here are some links and videos for you to look at.