Imagine being one of the young girls sold into prostitution.
Or a young boy made to be a child war soldier.
Or, a part of an Indian family whose relative sells you so they can pay their daughter's dowery.
Would you be asking the question, "Do I matter? Do I matter to God? Do I matter to my family? Do I matter to the world?"
In the darkest of circumstances, it's easy to believe that we don't matter. The world tells us that is our truth. As horrific mistreatments occur, the mind goes blank and the emotions go numb. Life is something to be endured rather than lived.
But, I have to believe that even in the darkest of situations that Jesus is present giving hope. I have to believe that as the lost and defenseless of our world suffer, that Jesus is present suffering alongside. The Bible tells us that he came to earth so we would know that he identifies with our sufferings.
So, what is our part? Do we decide that the lost and the defenseless will be okay since Jesus is present with them? No!
We have been given invitation to partner with Jesus in bringing light and hope to the world.
As we partner with Jesus in prayer, we see strongholds broken down.
One exciting example of this in human trafficking happened at Seattle Pacific University. Students committed themselves to fast and pray for one month for God to move to bring freedom to those who are enslaved.
The fast ended on a Sunday. Everyone was curious to see what would happen. They didn't have to wait long. That very next day, Monday, the front page of the Seattle Times was about a sting operation that had been in investigation for many years that took place: they shut down a series of massage parlors and strip clubs, and arrested the owners!
This is Jesus saying, "I hear your prayers and I move in the midst of them."
Prayer. It's our opportunity to partner with Jesus and see the world become brighter with his light. It's our opportunity to help enslaved women, children, men and teens across the world know in action that they matter.