Last week at the REST house we got to celebrate. We are celebrating a survivor who has moved out of the REST home and graduated from the transitional living program. This young lady has left what is referred to as “the life” (Human trafficking) and has been clean and sober for one year now. She now has a part-time job, her own vehicle and is now connected to a local church. The Lord is working here in Seattle and we are so excited about it. Please continue to pray for her, she is clinging so tight to Christ, Although the transition has not been the easiest, she has thanked the REST team for teaching her how to pray – because that has been the sharpest and most effective tool that she has.
Each day, I am excited to see the hand of God on the life of each woman I see come in contact with REST. I am also devastated by the pain and hurt in each of their stories. It is no small thing the fight they are fighting to remain clean and sober, to regain custody of their children, to heal, to establish their relationship with God, and to pick up the pieces of their life. It is an honour to continue to watch them fight so hard for change in their lives.
It was encouraging this week to be able to see a survivor ask questions about God, and wonder if He could ever love her again. As a team, we got to share the greatest news, that He has never stopped loving her, and in this road to recovery and healing, He goes before her (Psalm 139:5). She was greatly encouraged and has decided to recommit her life to Christ. Please pray for her, she is excited, nervous and scared, but she is willing to learn more about this God who has never stopped loving her.
The Lord is so good and so faithful. He sent His son to die for us! It is tragic to hear day after day how the name of Jesus has been used as a weapon of destruction amongst so many. There came a swift and heavy realization in the last month, about the reality that so many people have not rejected Jesus, but have rejected a false gospel, a false god and a religion, people have attached to the name of Jesus. Many survivors were abused and mistreated by people who openly proclaimed Jesus as their Lord. One job along with many is sharing the explicit, true, authentic gospel. Not the lie that was fed to them, but the true Jesus Christ. Please pray with me, as the false teachings begin to crumble, and the true word begins to be planted and watered, we walk in faith that the Lord gives the growth (1 Corinthians 3:6).
A lot of people have reached out to me in some capacity to know how they can help combat human trafficking, not only in Seattle but locally in their community. The first thing would be to become aware. Human trafficking is not a small issue. There are many preconceived notions about trafficking and prostitution, especially the idea that they are one in the same. That is not true, human trafficking involves the coercion of a person to take part of the sex trade. Whether that be the threat of harm or through psychological and emotional manipulation. Needless to say, it is not easy to identify a person being commercially exploited. A lot of the time these women may look like they are “free” to leave or run away from their abuser but really they are bound in chains, both mental and spiritual.
There are many different stories, some like others, and others like none at all. There are women who have been raised in brokenness and women who got mixed with the wrong crowd at a tender age. The average woman recruited to work in CSE (Commercial Sexual Exploitation) ranges from ages 12 to 13 years old. A lot of these women are in fact runaways, but it is important to note, they are not running to the streets, they are running away from something. Running away from abuse, neglect, hurt, pain… brokenness. By God’s grace, many of them here in Seattle have come into contact with REST. Letting them know they are not alone in this fight. We as the church walk with them.
Please continue to pray for me:
1. Pray that the young lady who has decided to take her walk with Christ seriously becomes open to discipleship and learning God’s Word. Please pray that the Spirit continues to heal her from the inside out.
2. Please pray for the women who have graduated from the program. Who have been integrated back into society, please pray for their continued safety in their community, their supporters and their trust in the gospel and Jesus to transform their lives.
3. Please pray that I continue to walk in obedience while here in Seattle, and share the gospel unapologetically. That It is not I who speak but Christ who speaks through me.