I was talking with Sam this week about the prostitutes in our city, when one of my boys overheard me.
"what is prostitution, mama?" he asked
and I told him just a bit - - a cleaned-up, over simplified bit of the horrible truth:
"Prostitution, sweet boy, is when a man doesn't treat a woman like she is created in God's image; and he treats her immodestly"
I paused again,
and my heart groaned
because I realized that, if I had been asked the same question 10 years ago, my cleaned-up, oversimplified version might have been something more like this:
"Prostitution, sweet boy, is when a woman treats a man immodestly"
I didn't know!
I didn't know about how so very often these girls are first abused in their homes - by family members. I didn't know about the pimps who weave elaborate plans to convince young girls that they are loved - only to take them to the city and force them to turn 30-40 tricks a night. I didn't know that food and water and even light are often withheld from girls as they are taught to comply with a pimp's demands. I didn't know that no one gives these girls a way out, until they are 25 and their bodies are falling apart and no one wants them anymore . . . and they don't know where to go, or what else to do . . .
I didn't know!
The issue of human slavery is complex. It is woven through with lies and blame and shades of guilt on every level. I don't pretend to give you a complete synopsis or to offer the solution in this blog post.
But I am committed to knowing.
I am committed to being part of the solution;
I will teach my children day in and day out about the incredible value that God has planted deep into the body and soul of EVERY individual on this earth. I will talk openly with friends and family and neighbors about the manipulation and abuse that happens within prostitution. I will engage in meaningful conversation with churches and organizations about how to love mercy, do justice, and walk humbly with God. I will pray passionately for my teammates who are giving their lives to care for girls in safe houses throughout the City.
I will be part of the Solution
because it matters to my God.
Rescue those who are being taken away to death;
hold back those who are stumbling to the slaughter.
If you say, "Behold, we did not know this,"
does not He who weighs the heart perceive it?
Does not He who keeps watch over your soul know it,
and will He not repay man according to his work?