Most of us think slavery is over. It’s not. In fact, today there are an estimated 27 million enslaved people- that’s the entire state of Texas plus another four million. The slavery of our day comes predominantly in the form of human trafficking and bonded labor. Both prey on the poorest and most vulnerable of our world. Deceptive brothel owners promise families money if they give their young daughter to them and, with the fear of starvation on their minds, they agree. These girls, some as young as six, are then sent on an international sex trade circuit. They end up in India, Malaysia, Cambodia, even the United States, to work as prostitutes. They were told their jobs would be in restaurants or hotels, but instead they are put out on the street for sex. And because their “owner” has “rescued” them from a life of poverty in their homeland, they are forced to pay him an insurmountable amount of money in return. What money they do earn in the sex trade he controls, so these young girls have literally no chance of ever repaying him. The same process is true of bonded labor, wherein poor families are promised jobs and financial freedom, and instead are forced to work 18 hours a day in brick kilns or factories to “repay” the person who owns them.
This blog’s theme is eikon, the Greek word for ‘image reflectors’ of God. We are called to reflect back to God the image of Him stamped on each of our souls. As I read about the injustices of our day, I can’t help but think… there’s nothing as contrary to God’s plan for humanity as this. The worst of humanity is revealed here.
And the heart of God is roused by this tragedy. His plan- to rouse our hearts. Proverbs 24:11-12 says:
“Rescue those being led away to death; hold back those staggering toward slaughter. If you say, “But we knew nothing of this,” does not he who weighs the heart perceive it? Does not he who guards your life know it? Will he not repay each person according to what he has done?”
We know about this. Now let’s act. Here are some things you can do to be educated and then mobilized as a modern-day abolitionist fighting what is unquestionably the greatest atrocity of our generation.
>> Consider giving financially. It takes money to prosecute the offenders and rehabilitate the victims.
>> Pick up a copy of this book: Not For Sale: The Return of the Global Slave Trade by David Batstone. You will read about these terrible situations but also about people who are fighting against it today.
>> Tell as many people as you can. We will not be moved into action if we remain ignorant.
If you want, post a comment to let me know you are moved by this tragedy. Or if you want more help in learning how you can get involved, just let me know.