Deciding to get involved in fighting human trafficking and exploitation was quite a journey for me. My natural first response to disaster is usually not action but thinking. I wanted to understand what’s happening, how people get trapped into exploitation, what makes them vulnerable, how culture contributes to their vulnerability and what is done already to change the situation. So I started reading blogs and books and talked to activists who took the time to listen to me and answer my questions. But there was something deeper: “What about God? What’s his take on the issue?” Around that time a good friend and I started reading through the Minor Prophets together. Here’s what I wrote in my journal after one of our meetings:
“Reading the prophets makes me realize that I need to feel God. I need to know how angry and passionate he really is. We read Hosea and I felt God’s anger. It was overwhelming – and THEN to hear him say that he’s NOT going to act upon his anger – even though it is so strong and powerful and scary is mind-blowing! His will to save is even stronger. That generates hope in me! And that’s even more overwhelming. I have no concept for this kind of love. It’s above and beyond everything that I can even begin to understand. But that’s what makes me want to step out. God is angry about what’s going. He’s not apathetic. He has the power to do something about it and chooses to do it in ‘weakness’, not overpowering us but sending us out – us… these weak and little people. To change the world. In his Spirit. To love people even if it kills us like it killed him (I don’t think I really know what I’m writing here…). We might be crushed but in the end love will prevail. If that wasn’t the truth I wouldn’t do a single thing. I would just look for a hammock in the Caribbean and wait for death in the most comfortable and relaxing way possible.
God, it’s not enough to know what my passion is. I need to know yours! You are God and I am not. Because you are the one sending us out, I’m not only interested in what I have to do, but in you, the one I’m partnering with in this. Because if you are who you say you are, if your heart is anything like what I’ve discovered so far, I’m in! You have me and I want to be yours! Your heart is very much for the poor, the exploited, the broken-hearted. I want to be with you in this.“
Jürgen Moltmann sums up well when he says, “We show our hope for the life that defeats death in our protest against the manifold forms of death in the midst of life. It is only in the passion for life and our giving of ourselves for its liberation that we entrust ourselves to the God who raises the dead.”