Because of our generosity to Accelerate, Immanuel is able to partner with God in the work of transforming lives! Here’s one way we’re coming alongside God in His mission!
by Lili Raven, Immanuel Attendee
Have you ever read something and felt as though you’d been hit with a two by four? I don’t mean literally. I refer to that feeling one can get when reading something and sense the Holy Spirit yelling “Pay Attention!” This happened to me more than a year ago, and it is something I have been praying a lot about. I was reading:
He has shown you, O mortal, what is good.
And what does the Lord require of you?
To act justly and to love mercy
And to walk humbly with your God. -Micah 6:8
The Lord has taught me a lot about mercy, both showing it to others and accepting it myself. He has loved me enough to help me walk humbly with Him (sometimes a painful process, but I’m usually grateful on the other side). So what is my prayer? How do I act justly? What does it mean to seek justice in our modern world?
When I am confused about something in the Bible I usually read before and after the verse to gain some context. I backed up and read Micah 6:4 and out came the two by four again. It says:
I brought you up out of Egypt
And redeemed you from the land of slavery.
Slavery? I kept thinking “we don’t have slaves in the United States,” but I couldn’t get it out of my head. I kept praying and started hearing more and more about human trafficking. Trafficking is the selling of people for labor, domestic service and prostitution.
I have to confess I was really judgmental about persons in prostitution. The more I prayed, the more the Lord softened my heart. It occurred to me that no child dreams of selling themselves into slavery when they are older. Anyone who is not allowed to leave is a slave and a victim. Children should be protected but often aren’t. The majority of persons in prostitution started when they were underage. These poor people have been exploited and are broken to a degree I can’t even imagine. God has shown me they deserve my compassion not my judgment.
So what can I do? First is to pray. Pray for the victims, for healing, for hope and freedom. Pray for those who exploit others — for softened hearts and for them to also be healed (Remember Mercy? Hurting people hurt people. Healthy people do not do this!). I’m praying for repentance, for awareness, for forgiveness and for guidance. I’m educating myself about trafficking and what would help. Right now I have a lot of questions and very few answers.
It is very easy to feel hopeless or helpless. I have to remind myself that the problem is not bigger than my God. He has brought this to my attention for a purpose, and it is not beyond His abilities to accomplish what He wills. My job is to stay close to Him, to listen and obey and to hold on tight. Jesus is driving, and I have no idea where we are headed. I only know I am with Him and that has to be enough. It feels a bit scary, but I am working on trust. I had asked God to show me what child like faith looks like sometime in the past year.
Don’t you love it when God answers our prayers?
Lili Ravn is a Christian, wife, mother, friend and someday when God finishes with her, she hopes to also be His obedient servant.
Lili is working together with an ICU team at Immanuel to help combat human trafficking on a local level here in Lake County. For more information contact team leader, Kate Brask, firstname.lastname@example.org.