Recently I have had the privilege of being part of training key individuals in the local community in regard the prevention of the Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Minors. It has been a joy to see the understanding of the realities of what is happening in our urban and suburban communities come to be a understanding to these individuals, much like you who are on the front lines working and interacting with youth on a daily basis.
During the trainings we often share part of our own experiences and past and during that time is when you can really see the hardness in people fall away. They can not deny your own story. You see our story matters, yours, mine and the person we meet on the street. We all have a story and we all matter – our lives affect the way we live and interact with one another. Let’s take time to look at one another, to listen and to make a difference.
During these trainings I saw something amazing, I saw hearts change and minds transform. It was like a dream come true. One women stated, ‘It could have been me- if not for the grace of God’; and another stated ‘We have to train teachers and others in the community; I’ve been teaching for 15 years and I never knew’.
I have a deep desire to do just this and will be developing a training for teachers and community leaders to equip them.
Each of us must listen to each others stories and we all make a difference in each others lives. You matter and together we can fight injustice together and bring the Kingdom of God to our communities.
“But you, God, see the trouble of the afflicted;
you consider their grief and take it in hand.
The victims commit themselves to you;
you are the helper of the fatherless.” Psalm 10:14