Prayer is a significant part of a faith based NGO's tool kit to fight trafficking. Here are some perspectives on that by our former intern, Eric Hall, who spent last fall working with us.
As followers of Jesus, Christians are called to help bring heaven where there is hell on this earth. Some of the ways that Christians are called to fight sex trafficking are the same ways that any other global citizens are called to fight sex trafficking (for example, being a part of an advocacy group). Faith-based NGOs like Oasis USA fight sex trafficking in some of the same ways that other NGOs do. But they also incorporate one additional aspect: prayer. It can sometimes feel like prayer will not make a difference, like God will not hear the cries but if Christians believe the Bible they will see that faith in prayer is everywhere. Richard Foster says, “The Bible pray-ers prayed as if their prayers could and would make an objective difference. The apostle Paul gladly announces that we are ‘co-laborers with God’; that is, we are working with God to determine the outcome of events (1Cor. 3:9)” (Foster 1998:35). Even in the midst of what looks like a losing battle with sex trafficking there is still hope that God can change things. Christians all over the world need to come together with one voice raised to God about sex trafficking. Now more than ever, as the world becomes more of one global community than it ever has been there is a perfect opportunity for Christians to be more unified in global prayer. They can share information and prayer requests through technology faster now than any other time in history. Diane Langberg when referring to what it would look like if Christians became unified in prayer against global sex trafficking says,
We would pray for the global church to hear the cries of the largest mission field in the world. We would pray for the girls and women in our pews and in our towns and cities who are crying for help. Every country represented at this Congress has trafficked females in it. Every congregation represented here has abused and violated females in its pews. We would pray for the churches worldwide that sit side by side with the trafficked. We would pray for the girls and women who are suffering and dying without hope. We would pray asking for discernment to know what to do for the widow and orphans, the vulnerable females of this world, of our communities (Logan 2007:76).
When God’s people pray, God listens. Sex trafficking is way too big of a problem for human beings to try and solve on their own. Help needs to come from something bigger than the problem. Christian organizations like The Salvation Army have used today’s technology like the Internet to help make other Christians around the world aware of what needs to be prayed for when it comes to sex trafficking (Thompson 2003:5-6). These organizations remind Christians when praying about sex trafficking that they need to pray about rescue and restoration, breakdown of the sex industry, reduction of demand, development in impoverished nations, world leaders to get involved in fighting human trafficking, and the church and its response to human trafficking (Thompson 2003:5-6).
Globally connected prayer is a must in the fight against sex trafficking. Ground level ways to fight sex trafficking like lobbying for better anti-sex trafficking laws are also a must in the fight against sex trafficking; but Christians also have the power of prayer. Now more than ever, a global prayer voice is needed to help fight global sex trafficking.
Foster, Richard J. 1988. Celebration of Discipline: The Path to Spiritual Growth. San Francisco: Harper & Row.
Logan, Samuel T. 2007. Confronting Kingdom Challenges: A Call to Global Christians to Carry the Burden Together. Wheaton, Ill: Crossway Books.
Thompson, Lisa. 2003. Prayer Guide: For the Victims of Sex Trafficking. Available here