This coming Sunday Rob Morris (president and co-founder) of Love146 will be preaching at our church about the love and justice of God in a world where human trafficking is an evil reality.
Children and women sold a dozen times a day for sex.
This will be the third time Rob has flown in from their world headquarters in Connecticut to preach at our church. As I anticipate this Sunday, I went on a trip down memory lane to the first time Rob preached at The Eastside Vineyard Church (January 2012).
A few hours after the service ended that day, Melissa Weckler (our phenomenal Vineyard Kids director) wrote an e-mail reflecting on what happened at church that day in our Vineyard Kids program. Here is an excerpt of what she wrote:
At one point in the morning, I walked past the sanctuary with a group of kids itching to run down the long stretch of hallway to the bathroom. There was a little girl in a tutu, another in pink skinny jeans, a third in tights and shiny shoes, and a boy with a faux-hawk. They were stifling giggles, eyes wide with excitement about the adventure of sneaking past 200 adults and possibly snatching a glimpse of their parent through an open door. In the bathroom, Rob’s powerful voice and call to action were washing over us — me and these beautiful children — and it struck me that in their innocence, they had no idea at all what he was talking about. His words didn’t spark the slightest bit of concern or even recognition in them. And then, one child started singing the ABCs and the others joined. A chorus of children’s voices drowned out Rob’s voice and I didn’t have the heart to shush them. What an absolutely amazing contrast!
What an absolute amazing contrast indeed. You see, what our kids were experiencing in church on Sunday is what kids around the world *should* be experiencing every day of their lives — joy… giggles… dressing in fun ways and not caring what people think… safety… innocence… love.
And yet, as our Vineyard Kids were walking down the hallway that day, in the adjoining room Rob was sharing horrific stories where countless children are experiencing a nightmare they can’t wake up from.
One of the reasons Kellie and I and our church are so proud to partner with Love146 is they are making a significant dent in the dark world of child sex slavery. May the kids they have helped rescue experience the joy that life should bring. May their childhood be redeemed by the grace of God. May they learn to trust again. To dream again.
May they shout the ABCs at the top of their lungs and may more and more kids be rescued and join them in their song.
To learn more about Love 146, go to love146.org and please join us (and invite your friends!) to come this Sunday October 13th at The Eastside Vineyard Church. Rob is an amazing preacher and he is going to bring it! 🙂 Our service is at 10:30am and we gather inside Shelby Jr. High School (51700 Van Dyke, 2 blocks north of 23 Mile). More info at tevchurch.org