Human trafficking and why continued efforts to stop it matter

By December 19, 2019

International (MNN) – It is the age of the #metoo movement, the Jeffrey Epstein scandal, and Dressember. The Freedom Challenge, an organization under Operation Mobilization, focuses efforts on rescuing victims of human trafficking and raising awareness.

The Fight Against Human Trafficking

(Photo courtesy of Freedom Challenge)

On the cusp of a new decade, is work to end human trafficking still vital? When it seems as if there is little to no way to counter human trafficking and stories of individuals in places of power who are exploiting the vulnerable come to light, is the fight against human trafficking still worth it? The Freedom Challenge’s Directory Tracy Daugherty explains why the answer is yes.

“This is nothing new. I just think that we’re more aware of it because of our communication tools available. I can know [about] all of this exploitation, and it’s a bit overwhelming. But if you look back from the very beginning, this idea of slavery was birthed, or exploitation or power over [others] was birthed in the heart of the enemy to try to mar the image of God’s creation,” Daugherty says.

Exploitation of Power

In 2019, Freedom Challenge started a domestic partnership with the like-minded Logos Wilderness Therapy.

Chelsea Van Essen, who is a licensed social worker and therapist, is the co-founder and clinical director of Logos Wilderness Therapy. Van Essen focuses on trauma and complex trauma and works with trafficking survivors.

(Photo courtesy of Freedom Challenge)

Van Essen explains human trafficking centers around power and control, along with the exploitation of both.

“Whenever there’s a power system in place, whether that’s individuals or organizations, we ought to be asking the question of how are they holding their power and also who is vulnerable around them,” Van Essen says.

These questions are applicable in churches, places of business, governments, and many more. Even if a specific power system seems like an unlikely place for exploitation, it does not mean it is immune to the exploitation of power and control.

Do Not Grow Weary

For Christians, awareness of human trafficking and exploitation, or any misuse of power, should be concerning.

“I think God cares a lot about power. I think there’s a lot of things that we see in scripture and biblically that speak to that and how we protect and uplift and empower the vulnerable,” Van Essen says.

(Photo Courtesy Freedom Challenge via Facebook)

In a way, whether human trafficking ends tomorrow, or continues for ages, it is the responsibility of Christians to protect, advocate, and fight for the vulnerable.

Galatians 6:9 tells us not to grow weary in doing good. Let’s not grow wearing in freeing and empowering those who are exploited and abused.

“God is good at His job. And His eye is on all of this. We get to just be salt and light. We get to preserve; we get to flavor; we get to light up dark places. And that is our commissioning as the Church,” Daugherty says.

Today, pray for freedom and healing for both human trafficking victims and human trafficking survivors. Pray for God’s peace to enter their lives and for the restoration of Christ. Pray for justice for those exploited.

Join us again tomorrow as we dig deeper into this topic.

To learn more about The Freedom Challenge, click here.

To learn more about Logos Wilderness Therapy, click here.

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