Human Trafficking. & Our Students.

Let's be inspired Human Trafficking is the second-largest and fastest growing criminal industry in the world.

Last night {during ccEngage: A Jesus Youth Group} we had the honor and privilege of learning more about human trafficking and exactly what we can do about it. Liz, the House Director of House of Engedi and the Executive Director of Hope 82, brought us a DVD curriculum that she made a few years back geared towards 13-18 years of age. {I will be trained in presenting this soon, if any surrounding groups would like this presentation!}.

This DVD highlighted two young girls from Oregon who were victims of human trafficking: sexual exploitation. Bought. Forced into sexual slavery. Sold. Devalued. Dehumanized. Beat. Broken. Lied to. Used. Taken advantage of. Stripped of their identity and worth. It was hard to watch and listen to their stories. It was uncomfortable for our students. Even for our leaders. It was heart wrenching, tear jerking, and angering. But it's real. Relevant. Happening. And it's not okay.

We have the honor of being in some amazing lives. The parents of these students let us into the hearts of their kids. I don't take that privilege lightly. We get to teach and lead them, but also learn so much from them. It is a jewel in my crown, this calling is.

We are not talking about these injustices to scar and horrify our kids, reminding them of our broken world. They have enough of that. No, we are talking about these very real topics because of a few reasons: 1. Jesus. It's always about Jesus. "Learn to do good. Seek justice. Help the oppressed. Defend the cause of orphans. Fight for the rights of widows." Isaiah 1:17

2. The average age of getting caught in Sex Slavery is 12-14. 12 years old. 12. Many are younger. Many are older. But 12-14 is the average age.

3. Our youth students are on the front line and can live with an awareness to prevent their friends and peers from falling into this trap. They see and hear way more than we do as adults. They would notice a sudden change in expensive jewelry or clothing or if a peer went missing every lunch break or if they have an older boyfriend they don't talk about much. We are outsiders when it comes to Middle and High School. I may be real young, but I am no longer in the walls of a school, therefore I don't have nearly as much power and influence as I once did.  But they do. If we can reveal to them the reality of the power and influence that THEY have, they will change this world. They will aid in rescuing their peers from getting trapped in this injustice.

I am going to let you in on a little bit of what was said from the mouths of 11-18 year olds:

The boys lead the inquiries, asking how they can help. The first response she gave was maintenance on two houses: mowing the lawn. One of our 8th graders said, "But I mean, how many men do you really need to mow the lawn? What else can we do?" I cried. What a heart.

Liz explained that these girls have formed an extremely skewed view of men and need healthy males around to show them what a real man should be like. Simply playing board games, revealing that they don't want anything from the girl. The simplicity of a board game. Teaching classes on cooking, laundry, tutoring; simple tasks and chores that we learn during the ages of 12-20 that these girls haven't had the opportunity to learn.

"It's impossible to protect all girls from guys like I was, because that's what we do. We eat, drink, and sleep, thinking of ways to trick young girls into doing what we want them to do." -Ex Pimp

The girls were excited to hear that Liz loves to throw parties and celebrate everything. That meant she needed party supplies, cookies, etc. They were jumping up and down, asking if we can do youth group there and invite the girls, if we can bring cookies and cake whenever. To see them asking to help in any ways possible was moving. The tears I shed were many. I was inspired. Are you inspired?

One more thing. These students prayed for the men and women who are the buyers and abusers. They prayed for their hearts, that they would be hit so hard with the love of Jesus Christ that they have no other choice but to fall on their knees and beg God for mercy. That they would walk in freedom as well.

>>An ongoing need will be toilet paper and laundry detergent pods. We will always be collecting those and I will take them to the house once a month or so.

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If you have any desire to get ahold of the power-point and video curriculum, please contact me. If you can support House of Engedi monthly or one time, click HERE.

We are seeing alot of awareness about this. But let's also take action. Let's not just feel bad and angry, but DO. Fight. Defend. "Don't let the sun go down on your anger;" aka: do something, don't forget.

I am moved beyond words that these middle and high schoolers want to DO something and are going to DO  something about this. We all have a part to play. Ask Jesus what your part is.

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Acts 7:24 "Seeing one of them suffer wrong, he defended him, and avenged him who was oppressed."

Isaiah 56:1 "This is what the LORD says: "Maintain justice and do what is right, for my salvation is close at hand and my righteousness will soon be revealed."

Romans 8:21 "the creation looks forward to the day when it will join God's children in glorious freedom from death and decay." Yes, yes we do.

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