Everyone Has Value and Purpose

Those who are fortunate enough to live a life in which all of our necessities are met may have difficulty comprehending having a life that doesn’t offer opportunities or choices. Yet, because our needs are met, we have time to ponder the meaning of life and our purpose in life.

A life of extreme poverty can crush hopes and dreams. Questions about life’s purpose are a luxury, only an option for people who don’t have to constantly worry about how to feed a family, find medical care for a loved one who’s ill, and find safe shelter. Living in abject poverty can also make people vulnerable targets to be trafficked into modern-day slavery.

Most of us only hear of human trafficking when news coverage features rescued victims, or arrests are made, but it’s a daily ongoing problem worldwide. It’s nearly impossible to accurately count the number of people hurt by trafficking because most of it is done in the shadows. Still, recent estimates place the number at more than 40 million.

A Higher Value and Purpose

Imagine, if you can, being cast aside by society simply because you’re poor. Being made to feel like you have nothing to offer the world, your life has no value. You’re imprisoned in a vicious cycle trying to earn money to keep your family from starving. You tirelessly try to find work, and when a person approaches you promising a job, you take it out of desperation, only to discover that it’s not a job. 

Instead, you’ve been forced into modern slavery—including everything from domestic servitude to sex work. You’re trapped, and the punishment for not following orders can be severe, such as starvation and physical beatings. In those circumstances, it’s understandable that a person would lose hope and be without self-esteem.

Victims of human trafficking are often made to feel that they have no value other than being a commodity. Yet, the profits gained from the immoral and unethical practice of human trafficking are very lucrative, estimated to be upwards of $150 billion annually. However, just as it’s difficult to know precisely how many people are trafficked, it’s also hard to pinpoint just how much money is made due to its criminal nature. 

However, just because victims don’t feel valued as individuals or feel they have a purpose in life other than making money for their perpetrators does not mean they don’t have a purpose. Every person has a purpose and should never think that they’re not important or needed in life. 

The scripture, Jeremiah 29:11, speaks to people dealing with hardship and suffering: 

For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.” God doesn’t promise an immediate escape from a difficult situation, but rather that He has a plan.

Together We Have Purpose and Power

Human trafficking is an enormous and complex issue. The root of the problem—lifting thousands of people out of poverty, so they’re less vulnerable—may be overwhelming. It may seem as though the human traffickers have all the power, but we each have power, too. Individually, we may not be able to stop human trafficking, but together, we can have a significant impact.

Maybe we can’t eliminate all the poverty in the world or ensure that everyone has food, water, healthcare, and education. But there are things we can do. So if you’ve wondered about your ability to change the world, this is an opportunity to do it. Your donation can change the world for at least one individual. 

Together we can deliver a better life for orphans who age out of the orphanage and are susceptible to exploitative situations, such as sex trafficking or forced marriage. We can shelter those who are homeless, fill bellies with food, and fill spirits with hope. Together, we can use our collective power to change lives. Together, we can create a supportive community to save people from becoming trafficking victims and help keep survivors free from further abuse. We know it’s possible.

Pure and undefiled religion before God and the Father is this: to visit orphans and widows in their trouble – James 1:27

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