Friday, January 23, 2009

Not for Sale - Human Trafficking

Sometimes our hearts are broken over injustices in life. I find mine laying on the floor. This week the table, a magazine printed by Ashland Theological Seminary, was issued. The topic - Human Trafficking.

The first article really got me thinking as the author wrote about the various reactions to the term "sanctity of life." Heard it many times, but today for some reason, it hit me in the middle of my ribs. With all the Presidential election press, topics such as abortion, homosexuality, and equal rights are at the forefront of our minds. All politics aside, I was struck with awe at how many 'christians' I know who cast their vote only for candidates who are pro-life, but then cast aside the HIV patient because he or she is a homosexual. Something just doesn't seem right there. A life is a life is a life. Don't get me wrong, I stand strong with the Word of God on these issues, but that doesn't change the heart that beats inside of each and every person.

I had lunch this week with a young woman from South America whose heart has been changed by the six months she spent in Cambodia serving in an orphanage and home for HIV infected women. A place where the sick sleep on the floor without any cots or blankets. God is raising her up and calling her to reach out to women and children who have been sold into Human Trafficking rings.

Think this is only a third world problem? Think again. Toledo, Ohio - about two hours from my house - ranks fifth in the United States for human trafficking. Not sure what all this human trafficking talk is about. Then check out this video from If you think that this has nothing to do with you because you aren't involved in sexual immorality, then think again. The carpet you are standing on may very well have been made by a child sold into slavery through human trafficking.

One of the articles in the magazine so pointedly says "We can stop assuming that every woman and girl on a 'street corner' wants to be there and that every runaway deserves what waits for her on the street." (Mitzi Smith, Ph.D., pg. 8 - the table). The entire issue of the table is available on-line to read. It is worth your time!

As Christians, as people, we need to open our eyes. We need to know what goes on in the world around us. No - you can't save every child and feed every hungry person. But you can pray. You can be aware and educated on these matters. You can look the problems in the eye and not just look the other way. God called us to reach out to the oppressed and the imprisoned. He created us for such a time as this. What is God calling you to do? Listen carefully - you just might make a difference.