Do Justice

Micah 6:8

“He has told you, O man, what is good;
And what does the LORD require of you
But to do justice, to love kindness,
And to walk humbly with your God?

I have always tried to support Tiny Hands International.  I have prayed for them, especially when they send out reminder e-mails.  I have bought their merchandise for gifts.  I even wear my “One Girl”* bracelet … sometimes.  But I have to admit that I felt a bit detached from their work.  Even though I do feel that their work in Nepal and surrounding countries is so full of positive impact, that was half a world away – a long ways from Lincoln.  Until now.

While the issue of child exploitation may be more pronounced in other countries, this IS something that occurs in Nebraska as well.  So much so that the legislature thankfully felt the need to pass LB1145 which puts stricter penalties in place for those who are found guilty in human trafficking.  This is happening in our neighborhoods otherwise no laws would need to be passed.

So, what is a mom to do with this heavy issue?  Sometimes I feel at a loss to do more when I cannot even handle what is already expected of me.    The first thing (and really the most important thing!) is to pray.  Pray that the children caught in these situations will have the courage to seek help.  Pray that those teenagers who are thinking of running away will recognize that they will be running into even more trouble.  Pray that if God sends someone my way that needs help, that I will recognize what I can do.

Recently I had an older teenage girl knock on my door asking to mow our lawn because she said she needed work.  I had 3 children close by that were interrupting me and plus had also been feeling money strain, so my immediate response was no.  This was legitimate on the mowing anyway (we have a rider mower that I am even scared to operate because it so technical).  But  her face has haunted me ever since – what if I would have simply asked a few questions and listened to reasons behind her need.  Would I have been able to help her to get out of a desperate situation?  Now all I can do is pray that God will send her back my way if I was supposed to have helped her.  A missed opportunity.

That leads me to the second thing that I can do.  I can be more aware to meet the needs that I can meet.  First to my own children, then to others around me.  Jesus did not heal every person that He came in contact with – instead He fulfilled His mission from God.  He did the will of His Father, which was exactly enough.  While I cannot rescue every child, I can provide a safe place for neighborhood children to feel the love of Christ.

The third thing that I can do is be informed.  An easy place to start is to simply visit some of the websites (that are at the bottom of the page) to learn more about the trafficking industry and especially what others are doing to fight against it.  But, there are also two upcoming events where you can get more information as to what is happening in the area, as well as around the world.

One week from tonight at 7:00 p.m. at Lincoln Berean Church, you can go to hear a presentation from “I’ve Got a Name” (a local nonprofit under Tiny Hands that works in this area).  The young lady who is speaking is a former run away who ended up doing unspeakable things to survive.  This does happen in the Lincoln area, and I know that I personally need to stop pretending that the children that I see all have happy homes and are well cared for.  A caution: we do NOT need to turn into abuse inspectors!  At the same time, we need to be open to careful investigation and even involving the authorities when a situation does not seem right.  To take that step, I would encourage a lot of prayer, discernment and wise counsel.  For someone to have to get out of the storm of unjust allegations would be an unfair nightmare!  (I have a prior commitment next Tuesday, so I am not going to be able to attend the “I’ve Got a Name” event, so if any of you do attend and learn more that we can do, please let me know, and I will pass that information on!)

Another event is taking place in a few weeks.

Nefarious Documentary tour information.  This is a free event.  Due to the nature of the film it’s recommended for adults and teens only, depending on parent discretion. 
Nefarious- Merchant of Souls tour ” Behind the veil of the sex industry” –
May 20th at 7:00pm
Lincoln City Church  5001 South 1st St.
sponsored by Tiny Hands International & Nebraska Family Council

Doing justice is a lifelong quest – a task that seems monumental!  I am so thankful that if I walk humbly with my God, He will be the one to guide me as to what showing kindness and doing justice looks like.  I do know that we are to be the hands and feet of Jesus – I do so want to represent Him well!  As I was running Monday morning, this Jeremy Camp song I heard challenged me to action.

Every thing’s so surreal
But this urgency I feel
We should be reaching out to
All these desperate pleas
Oh, the need is real, can’t you feel
Let’s call it revolution
My beating heart is breaking for them
That’s why I’m speaking now
That’s why I’m speaking now
We are, we are in desperation
We need to reach this generation
We are speaking louder than before
We are the hope that’s been forgotten
We are the love that will be brought and
We are speaking louder than before

Note:  *for more information on the “One Girl” bracelet and other work that Tiny Hands is doing, please visit  http://www.tinyhandsinternational.org/  You can also visit http://www.ivegotaname.com, but there was not a lot of information on that website.

There are two wonderful organizations on Lincoln that can help us to learn more about issues impacting the family.

Nebraska Family Council http://nebfc.org/

Family First http://www.familyfirst.org/ (The Nebraska affiliate for “Focus on the Family”)

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