It begins with worship. There was a dull roar of about 350 people. This is absolutely overwhelming, in the best possible circumstance. The worship was not contained by only chords and voices, but also by simply speaking the name, “Jesus”. The presence of His people ready to be educated and serve for his kingdom manifested in a such powerful way. Hearts prepared for the evening as Jesse Chaney set the tone for what this night was all about. Initiative is not a place that is trying to out-do the church or take people away from the church. Initiative desires to empower young people to return and help lead in the church to further the kingdom. This will especially be accomplished when hard things are addressed, solutions are sought out, and it’s decided that we are in it for the long haul.
“Jesus came and gave his life so we could live fully here. Part of that is being about his business and setting his captive free.” When your kids ask one day, “didn’t you know human trafficking was wrong? What were you doing about it?” What will you say?
Her presence was powerful. Though she is small in stature, the Lord has blessed her with a spirit and passion for people that towers over the city. TraffickStop is an educational initiative Tomi founded in 2009 to educate, advocate, and engage people on human trafficking. It is the second leading crime and precedent in the world today. We could do facts all day long. The real question is, why should we respond?
- Reason 1: We respond because God is compassionately responding. Just as He heard the children who were enslaved by Pharaoh in Exodus 3, He hears them now. Go meet the Lord in the desert just as Moses did and listen for his call.
- Reason 2: We were set free from bondage of our sins. Freed people, free people. We aren’t just setting the trafficked free, but the consumers and the traffickers as well.
- Reason 3: The future of your children depends on what you decide to do today.
- Reason 4: Our generation is the generation of HOPE. We can manifest global change in what we choose to do with our gifts. The sanctity of human life really hangs in the balance of how we choose to act now. HOPE (H:honor God with your life O: Operate in your giftedness. P: Pursue God's agenda for freedom. PASSIONATELY pursue it. E: Engage and be empowered with great empathy for EVERYONE who has been involved in trafficking, no matter that position.)
Founder and Co-executive Director of “Jesus Said Love”. A ministry that involved loving on strippers and reminding them that they’re loved by a savior. She realized this calling when she heard women speaking at a conference in Austin about sexual abuse. She was, at the time, a worship leader, singer/songwriter. She heard God say, “If the bulk of your ministry is explained on a stage, you have missed the kingdom”. She got off the platform and decided to pursue this ministry further.
A survivor of being sexually exploited and trafficked. It is incredible to see how she has turned her set of dark circumstances into a story for in which the power of the gospel shines bright. Her home life was full of abuse, pornography and no protection. It continued into being trafficked and set up in strip clubs. But God wanted something greater for his daughter. She was rescued and went through New Friends, New Life. She is a graduate of the program and of Dallas Baptist University, has two boys, and works as a panel speaker with Frederick Douglas. Not only that, but she also helps with prison ministry and other events.
Our Powerhouse Panel Answered Some Crowd Questions:
What is next? Where can we get involved? We need everyone to ask God where they should be involved. When it comes to Jesus Said Love, we need people of all kinds. If you are breathing, you are qualified. Go to the low income areas where pimp culture rules and mentor boys. Research places and go help out at different organizations. There is the 6 degrees of separation, but I think there is really only 1 degree of separation from who God wants you to know.
What are tangible rules that men can take to stop sex trafficking? Stop watching porn and don’t promote the pimp culture. Men can re-evaluate on how they view women and sexuality. How has your mind been groomed? Men need to also learn one of the most important things is having unpleasant accountability conversations.
What are some common mistakes you see ministry making that we can correct? They come not knowing about the survivor. They aren't learning what they have been through. They come not knowing how to embrace with love through the gospel. People don't want to understand the background. Just because people know Jesus doesn't mean their background is all water under the bridge. Every church should have counseling for sexual abuse, sexual addiction, pornography in WOMEN. Churches see this as just another cause or temporary issue that they can engage on. The church needs to own it's responsibilities in how it dispenses love. The trafficking is happening all the time and we have a role to play. It is NOT just once a month or in January. In this move of God, what threatens the enemy more than anything is unity in the body. We need to put our egos aside for the sake of the gospel. We need unity.
We have to be praying for ourselves to understand, for victims, for business that may be complicit, for traffickers, law enforcement, a mighty hand of God to be compelling a response in our country for this issue.Ask God to reveal to you who the victims are. There are needles in haystacks. They don't know that they're victims. They are living the life they have been indoctrinated to.