Tag Archives: United States

Support USA Survivors of Human Trafficking

Did you know that human trafficking is prevalent in the United States? Yes–you read that right! Human trafficking is an atrocity that happens everywhere, and even in developed countries like the USA.

  • Experts indicated in 2010 that there were currently at least 100,000 child victims of sex trafficking in the United States while upwards of 325,000 remain at risk.
  • In 2016, Human trafficking in the United States rose 35.7 percent from the previous year, according to data from the National Human Trafficking Hotline.

Clearly, this is a huge problem! The good news: you can help! I’m partnering with my friend Hannah and Trades of Hope this month. Your purchase will go toward helping women rescued out of human trafficking in the USA. Bonus: in February, proceeds will also go toward helping families in India have clean water!

Trades of Hope works with two American co-ops: one based in Los Angeles helping women leave industries of sexual exploitation and sex trafficking, another based in Tennessee that offers sustainable jobs to women who have survived lives of violence, prostitution and addiction. These groups provide different forms of housing, food, dental, medical, therapy, education and job training so these women can build a brighter future for themselves. When women come into this group, they are offered the resources needed to go through recovery, heal from childhood wounds, and get physically healthy. Creating products is a beautiful part of that process that helps them also make an income while they heal. The co-ops create jewelry and body products.

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Shana (middle) is one of the women who escaped a life of trafficking and now works for the Tennessee co-op as a sales rep for the body product line. Courtesy of Trades of Hope.

Here are a few of the products available, created with love and hope by the women employed in the USA co-ops:

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Love Heals set, created by women in the Tennessee co-op//Courtesy of Trades of Hope

 

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New Leaf earrings//Courtesy of Trades of Hope

 

Are you interested in helping not only the women rescued from human trafficking in the USA, but also helping families in India have clean water? Head on over to Trades of Hope! 

Previous: I blogged about the work of Trades of Hope in Uganda!

Next: I will be blogging about the work of Trades of Hope in Jordan!

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Happy Birthday, Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr!

Today in the USA, we celebrate the birthday of Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. He was a great man who trumpeted equality in a time when blatant and unashamed inequality reigned. Ultimately, he paid the price for fighting with his life. Still today, his legacy echoes on and encourages us, as we continue to press for true equality for all races. There is still a long, long way to go. Thanks to Martin Luther King Jr.’s example, we can be strong and continue dreaming and working for equality and peace between all races and people.

Check out my thoughts from last year on MLK Jr. and how the way he lived his life can relate to our lives.

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Photo by Jerónimo Bernot on Unsplash

Live Courageously.

The United States of America is entering a new chapter. For actually a few years, I have had the sense that the United States was going to enter a time of difficulty. I believe that the time of difficulty has now begun. Recent events have thrown my workplace into upheaval. Really, the entire country and, to some extent, the world, are in a place of uncertainty. There is a culture of animosity right now in the United States. At certain points, all of these events have been a lot to take in emotionally. I’ve been surrounded by them from morning to evening. I felt so weak and drained. Then, I felt the Lord telling me to live courageously. He confirmed this as every song that came on the radio seemed to echo the theme of courage and bravery! No matter where you are, YOU are being called to live courageously.

What does it mean to live courageously?

Living courageously means keeping your center on JESUS even when the world has gone crazy.

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(photo courtesy of unsplash.com)

 

Living courageously means being PEACE in a world where anger and negativity is rampant.

Living courageously means walking HUMBLY with God even when you are surrounded by darkness and ego on every side.

Living courageously means casting out fear and replacing it with LOVE.

Living courageously means speaking up for JUSTICE for those who are voiceless.

Living courageously means RELIANCE on Jehovah-Jireh (God the Provider) when you don’t have a paycheck and wonder how you will pay the bills, or when you don’t know if you will soon have a paycheck.

Living courageously means being a sign of HOPE to others even when you feel weighed down by the burdens of your life and the world.

Living courageously means being a person of PRAISE as the storm rages all around you.

Living courageously means TRUSTING in God when all stability is pulled out from under you.

Living courageously means picking up your shield of FAITH and the sword of the Spirit, the WORD OF GOD and knowing they are your weapons.

Living courageously means staying in a place of PRAYER in a world that distracts and fills us with noise.

Living courageously means knowing that God’s POWER is made perfect in your WEAKNESS. (2 Cor. 12:9)

Are you ready to live courageously? It will not be easy, friends. Thankfully we have our perfect Heavenly Father to fight for us, His Son who endured every temptation that we do (without giving in), and the Holy Spirit who permeates every darkness and every fiber of our being. Let’s go!

It’s time to live courageously.

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Choose Life.

“I call heaven and earth to witness against you today, that I have set before you life and death, the blessing and the curse. So choose life in order that you may live, you and your descendants.”~Deuteronomy 30:19

Today marks 44 years since abortion was legalized in the United States. It is a solemn day to think about. It is estimated that close to 59,000,000 abortions have been performed in the United States of America since that time.

Death begets death. Abortion not only takes the life of a child, but brings other

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courtesy of unsplash.com

deaths as well. The women who have been left depressed and feeling lifeless. The mothers who now have difficulty parenting and attaching to their children, due to previous abortions. Mothers who lost their life due to a botched abortion. Women who have taken their own lives because they simply couldn’t deal with the pain.

The fathers who grieve for their child aborted against their will, and the fathers who will never know they had a child. The fathers who pressured a woman into abortion and abdicated the authority they were to have in the relationship. The fathers who now realize their sin and find it difficult to live with themselves. Siblings feeling an emptiness in their life and not knowing why. Grandparents with empty arms. The list goes on.

Despite the many problems with the new United States presidential administration, I believe that God will bless their decision for this nation to choose life. A nation that chooses death cannot live, in the physical or spiritual sense. This nation sets the precedent for other nations in many regards. The world looks to America for example. We praise God that it appears life will be chosen and promises will be kept good on.

Check out this prayer for all children. Please also pray for the women who grieve after an abortion or abortions. (Are you grieving after an abortion? Has your life never been the same? Find help! There is healing, forgiveness, and new life in Jesus Christ.)

Today, we look to the Author of Life for help in respecting and defending all life. We pray to be a people that is truly pro-life and for all life–beginning with the tiniest life, at conception.

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unsplash.com

A World Used To “The Way It Is.”

Have you ever noticed that we live in a world that doesn’t like change to the way things are?

Today we celebrate Martin Luther King Jr‘s birthday. Martin Luther King Jr. died for theMartin Luther King.png cause of equality for all the races in the United States. There were many people opposed to his message. They wanted things to stay the way they were. In the end, the opposition killed him. This year will mark 49 years since his life was taken too soon. His legacy lives on. Many freedoms have been secured for equality between races. Now, segregation is illegal. Black children and white children attend school together. People of every color can drink from the same water fountain, and decide where they would like to sit on a public bus. Citizens of every race can cast their vote in elections.Though the laws have changed, many realities have not. So we press on. MLK teaches us to fight for justice and what is right in a world that doesn’t want things to change.

When you are living a life different than what the world says you should, you will encounter opposition. 

When you go deeper in a relationship with God and abandon your life to live totally for HIM, there will be resistance.

When you seek justice for the oppressed, you will battle opposition.

When you do things in a way that is outside the status quo, there will be resistance.

When you make decisions that don’t follow the normal, there will be opposition.

When you wait on the Lord for HIS choice of spouse, people will think you are picky and unreasonable.

If you are seeking to live an authentic Christian life, the world will try to silence you.

Step outside the status quo. Forget what the world says. Take a leap of faith in the walk that God has given you, and the strength that you have been given to walk it out.

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courtesy of unsplash.com

 

Pope Francis Is Coming to the United States!

It’s an exciting time for the United States! Pope Francis will set foot on U.S. soil in mere days!

The general schedule for his visit can be found here.  One reason for Pope Francis’ visit will be to celebrate the World Meeting of Families. That brings me to the an important prayer intention: pray for families, that they may be united in love, and for the strengthening of the family unit. Marriage is meant to be a reflection of Christ’s love for the Church–is it any surprise, then, that the enemy wants to destroy marriage and intact families?

Importantly, of course, pray for the safety of Papa Francis, and for stamina for him. He’s no spring chicken, though you wouldn’t know it!

And a very big intention: the Pope will be speaking to Congress! This is the first time in history this has happened. In fact, Pope Francis was invited to address Congress! Let us pray that the leaders who make decisions for the United States may open their hearts to hear and listen to what is said. May the Holy Spirit guide Pope Francis as to what to say and how to say it. This nation has strayed very far from the laws of God. Perhaps the Holy Spirit will touch some hardened hearts as they listen to a spiritual leader.

Pray for the pilgrims. People will be traveling from near and very far. Pray for safety and that they may find spiritual refreshment. Also pray that all the cities and people will be renewed in faith and peace.

We can’t wait to welcome you to the country, Pope Francis!

courtesy of ABC News
(photo courtesy of ABC News)