Sitting here in a cozy cafe on this cloudy Amsterdam morning, feeling so thankful. As I continue to wade through all that I have learned in these last six weeks, I thought I would simply share a few quotes that stood out to me personally. If you’re interested, take a look! In my next post, I’ll be highlighting more of what we’ve been up to for the past week as well.
Week One: Justice From a Biblical Perspective
“Heros are those who do what needs to be done, even though it’s inconvenient, uncomfortable, or nobody else is doing it.”
“Injustice is not a wrong against us. Ultimately, it is a wrong against God.”
“Hope is anchored in the character of God.”
“Do not be afraid of places of death. They are opportunities for resurrection and life.”
Week Two: Justice, The Sex Trade, and More…
“[What we need] is systematic, quiet, culture-based change. Long term comittment…and relationships are key.”
“Human trafficking is, at its roots, the exploitation of vulnerability.”
“Prostitution is the only legal job [in some countries] with non-profits created to help you get out…In the name of freedom, people are enslaved.”
Week Three: The Father Heart of God, Sexual Abuse, Addictions and the Brain
“The Gospel invites us into the depths, not into escape. We need to engage brokenness.”
“The core issue with our trauma is that it distorts our view of God, [and then our view of others and ourselves as well.]”
“The cross of Christ is so central to healing. To recieve life we must be willing to walk through death. Through the cross we can walk through pain and come out victorious.”
“Ultimately, what gives value to our work is the fact that it’s an expression of our love. We’re just giving back to God what He gave to us.”
“The biggest thing we have to offer people: the permanent goodness of God.”
Week Four: Perspectives–Networks, Politics, Law Enforcement, and Trauma
“Human Trafficking is an evil that will not leave quietly. It is an attack against the very image of God.”
“The biggest barrier to anti-trafficking work: lack of collaboration.”
“Coming together is a beginning.
Keeping together is progress.
Working together is success.”
“To defeat a networked enemy, we had to become a network ourselves.”
Week Five: Mental Health, Media, and Survivor Stories
“Legalization commodifies a person. They not only become the provider of the good, but the good themselves…it creates a culture that grows abusers. The environment itself encourages it.”
“It’s not a coincidence that prositution draws on the most vulnerable population of a community.”
“How can you use the strengths of your culture to overcome its weaknesses?”
Week Six: Pioneering a New Ministry and Collaboration
“Always be sure to examine unintended consequences. Well-intentioned but uniformed work can be very damaging.”
In regards to directing hatred towards buyers and traffickers: “We can’t have selective compassion.”
“Are we seeking to create safer communities so that these things happen less?”
If you’re interested in hearing any more about what I’ve learned on these specific topics, I’d love to chat with you! It’s so hard to convey all that has changed in my heart and mind as a result of these sessions. My biggest prayer in these next five weeks will probably be, “God, now that I have learned and seen this, what would you like me to do with it?”
Wherever these next six weeks and beyond take me, I know one thing, however: I will enter them with a much larger perspective towards all sides of the issue, and a deeper heart to work with excellence and discernment.