Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Voiceless Wednesdays--Child Prostitution

For the next 30 or so weeks, I'll be giving some brief facts and highlighting an issue of suffering or social injustice against women in the world on Wednesdays. I will warn you that the information may be challenging and disturbing. Please feel free to skip these posts. If you do read them, plan to be changed. Plan to be pulled from your own sense of security and planted right in the midst of another person's nightmare.

I am following the outline of A Voice for the Voiceless: 30 Days of Prayer for the Voiceless. To order your own copy of this fantastic book, complete with beautiful photographs from around the world, visit: Scroll down for ordering information.

Child Prostitution
Because of the oppression of the weak and the groaning of the needy, God will now arise. Psalm 12:5
Definition: the sexual exploitation of a child for remuneration in cash or kind, usually but not always organized by an intermediary (parent, family member, procurer, or teacher).
*10 million children worldwide are engaged in some facet of the sex industry. Each year, at least one million children, mostly girls, become prostitutes
*In Thailand, 10-12 year old girls service men in the sex industry. They typically have sex with men 10-15 times per day and sometimes as many as 20-30.
*In South Africa, there are 40,000 child prostitutes.
*Children are more susceptible to HIV and other STDs.

How this impacts me personally...
If I had been born in any of many other parts of the world, with the birthmark I have, one of three fates would have most decidedly been mine:
*I would have been literally tossed into the street with garbage or for animals to feed on.
*Immediately after birth, I would have been taken to another room and killed.
*I would have been sold to individuals who breed young girls for the sex trade, removing their ovaries at a particular age, keeping their appearance more youthful and preventing pregnancy.

Father, I'm overwhelmed. I don't even know where to begin to pray, except to first thank You for Your grace which has placed me on soil of safety. For allowing me to be born into the family I was. For sparing me a life of injustice. I pray for the souls of all the young girls caught in child prostitution. Rise to their defense, Lord. Make Yourself known to them. Send laborers, missionaries with hearts for the abused, to share the gospel of hope, the gospel of Jesus Christ with them. Shine Your light into their hearts and revive the Holy Spirit in their communities.
Forgive me for being blind and ignorant of my world-wide sisters. Thank You for showing me suffering and showing me the need to cultivate a heart of compassion. Stir my heart, Lord. In Jesus' Name, Amen.