God’s Relentless Love Can’t Be Rebranded
Today there are several banners waving prominently on the justice landscape. Among the leading contenders is “human trafficking.” I guess you could say that I am one of the many individuals waving the anti-human trafficking banner. We sometimes find our identity as “new abolitionists.” I recently had the privilege to hear one of the most prominent “new abolitionists”, Rachel Lloyd, author of Girls Like Us and founder of the New York based Girls Education and Mentoring Services (GEMS, http://www.gems-girls.org/). In her compelling presentation she reminded the group of aftercare service providers that we had about 2-3 years to ride the high of the current social tidal wave of new abolitionists, before there came a new social issue in vogue.
I have come to realize that human trafficking is not a new issue to society, but one that has been rebranded. In the US and internationally we used to call it “prostitution.” I once heard a police officer even state they used to call these minors “baby prostitutes.” At one gathering of Christian women in leadership, I explained to a woman my work and she said, “you mean prostitutes? We’ve been helping these prostitutes in our church for years.” Thankfully we are slowly reframing how we think about women and men, girls and boys who find themselves in forced sexual exploitation. They are a product of an unjust society. They are strong and resilient; yet looking for the love, security and meaning that is an intrinsic part of being human.
While issues may come and go, non-profit organizations may start and fail, one thing I know to be true is that no matter what the fashionable justice-issue-of-the-day might be, God’s love for his fallen creation remains the same. Because He relentlessly pursues me, I will relentlessly pursue justice for individuals fighting for the chance to be who they were created to be.
Contributed by Cara Copeland, Newberg Friends