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Monday, November 24, 2008

The Truth Of the Matter

If you speak to any insecure woman long enough then you are bound to get to the root of the cause and likely, it isn't a pleasant situation. You see, lurking in the fast paced, get-it-done, information superhighway known as the internet is a not so hidden evil: pornography.

Unfortunately, I have gone to generic websites only to see a flashing image in the sidebar that screams for attention. For some, the attention can turn into sin. It did for me.

Having never even clicked on the image to see what it was about I did several things that caused me to sin:
  1. I judged the woman who's face I saw.
  2. I became unsatisfied with my own self and the way God created me because I did not compare in physical appearance to the woman who's image I'd seen.
  3. I became enraged at her and other girls like her and the men who continued to obsessively keep them in business.
It put me in bondage. God had to set me free.
For where you have envy and selfish ambition, there you find disorder and every evil practice.
James 3:16
I had become envious of what I believed I did not have: my husband's sole desire; a body like I had when I was 20; and answers as to why these girls do what they do. Then God spoke to my heart...

In the midst of angry thoughts towards these women God put images into my head, new ones. I saw an older man and He spoke directly to me. He said, "She is my daughter. I was never there for her. I worked long hours and weekends believing that was what she needed to have a good life. I wasn't there to love her but others were. What have I done?"

Then I saw a woman about my age. She was crying and through her tears she mumbled, "She is my little sister. She was date raped when she was 16. She planned on saving herself for marriage. That all changed after that night. She was never the same again."

I tried to shrug off the things going through my mind at that point but God persisted. A little girl showed up next. She was making cereal for her little brother. After she poured the milk she explained that her daddy left and her mom couldn't pay the bills. They had already lived in their car and they didn't have enough money to get to her grandma's house. One day a nice guy offered her mommy a job taking pictures. Mommy promised she would only take a few and that once she had enough money to get to grandmas then she would stop but after a while that nice man wouldn't let her stop. He would come to get her mom if she tried to stay home. He hit her a lot too. She put the milk back in the refrigerator and my thoughts drifted to another scene.

I saw a casket. A woman and a man knelt beside it. Her screams penetrated every fiber of my being. She cried and wailed. I saw a picture of a beautiful young girl on a table near the head of the box that would forever be her resting place. The father picked up the photo and held it to his close to his heart. Through his tears he said, "My daughter was kidnapped when she was 13 years old. Within days she was sold into sex trafficking and even though we got close to finding her many times they always managed to keep her just out of reach. They eventually killed her for trying to escape but not before they had uploaded her photos to the internet for all the world to see. They left her in a ditch like she was nobody. The papers read, 'Local Prostitute Found Dead.' She isn't a prostitute! She is my little girl!" Tears overcame him as he rejoined his wife.

By this time I was crying too and I knew exactly what God was trying to tell me. I'd never seen these women as real people before. I just always saw them as my enemy. God wanted me to see them through His eyes. They all have a story just like I do. They have reasons for their actions just like I do. God loves them as much as He loves me and He wants them to spend all of eternity in heaven with Him too.

I have a new perspective on this. Though there are some who may not have ever experienced anything like this and still have chosen to live this life, we have to remember they are still God's children. We must pray for them. We must treat them with dignity and respect and we must not judge them.

Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails.
1 Corinthians 13:4-8

If we want to see this foul practice come to an end then we need to intercede on behalf of all of those involved. We must ask God to break the strongholds and we must seek to find security in God and not in what we perceive to be desirable beauty. If we each only focus in prayer for one person then we could most certainly change the world. Won't you join me?

Two great ministries to get information on this subject matter is: Cyrus International and A21.



I'd love for you to visit me at my personal blog: In Pursuit of Proverbs 31

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17 Comments:

Blogger Denise said...

Bless you dear for having such a lovely heart. I will gladly join you.

November 24, 2008 at 2:57 AM  
Blogger Homesteader in Training said...

That was incredible. A bright perspective on a dark world. I will never see those involved in that lifestyle the same again. Prayers will be sent instead of judgement. Thank you for your thoughts on this and for speaking to us what God had revealed to you!
Hugs.
Kim

November 24, 2008 at 5:46 AM  
Blogger Tami Boesiger said...

A beautiful piece of writing, Amy. I appreciate the reminder to look past the sin to the person. Amen.

November 24, 2008 at 7:21 AM  
Blogger Jennifer Dukes Lee said...

Amy, I've seen lots of posts about men's perspectives on fighting against pornography. But I really appreciate your willingness to be vulnerable here and show how this problem has affected you. God bless you. I'm sure others will be blessed as well!

November 24, 2008 at 8:27 AM  
Blogger Woman on a Mission said...

This is one of the most powerful posts I've read in a long time. I'm an advocate against Human Trafficking. There is a great amount of information out there that people need to know. Children are being killed in snuff films. Woman are being trafficked and are told their families will be killed or trafficked if they try to leave.

A great movie by Lifetime that is a pretty accurate must see is Human Trafficking. There is a documentary that was just released and seen on Dr. Phil, called Call & Response. Check these out or go to the Call and Response website for more info.

The problem, is that ~ There are more slaves today than ever before in human history. ~ In 2007, Slave Traders made more money than Google, Nike and Starbucks combined and the biggest demand is in the U.S

If we can stop the demand, there will no longer be a supply and our country has a lot of blame on her shoulders. The more we know about this, the more we can do to combat it. Pornography doesn't just destroy teenager, families, marriages and self-esteem...it kills innocent woman.

Thank you for bringing up this issue.

November 24, 2008 at 8:35 AM  
Blogger Lori@EnjoyThe Process said...

That was an amazing post Amy. God truly has spoken through you on this matter. Thank you for the reminder of how to pray for these innocent ones. Blessings to you!

November 24, 2008 at 9:07 AM  
Blogger karin said...

Thanks for sharing your compassionate insight into other people's lives. Each one of us has a story to tell. Let's listen to people's stories without judgment and let's love them with the heart of the Lord. Beautifully written!

November 24, 2008 at 9:40 AM  
Blogger Pttyann said...

That was truly one of the most captivating post I've read yet,to feel God touching you and walking you through the lives of others while at the same time changing your views of others,and then changing my mind also!!! God is so wonderful and His Great love for us All still amazes me.Thanks for Sharing with us Amy.

Love in Christ

November 24, 2008 at 10:58 AM  
Blogger Blessed Mama of 4 said...

I am moved at the thoughts of what brought these women to this place, and then God inserted this thought...regardless of how or why they are there now, doing what they are doing, there is hope for what they can become in Him.


... and there is hope for us who judge them. God, I pray that you give us your eyes and your heart, that our sinful ways would be transformed for your Glory.

November 24, 2008 at 11:26 AM  
Blogger Praise and Coffee said...

Beautiful post Amy. It is so easy to pass judgment and compare, but God's Word compels us to see people as He does.

One time while teaching on this very subject I compared that lost person to someone lying bloody in the street...sometimes we need to see people for the pain that is going on inside them.

We know that that indeustry does not treat them well...it preys on the lost and hurting...then the church condemns them.
Heartbreaking.

Thanks for bringing the subject into the light in such an eloquent way.

Sue

November 24, 2008 at 3:06 PM  
Blogger Julie said...

This was a powerful, powerful post, Amy..... It spoke volumes.....

Julie

November 24, 2008 at 7:03 PM  
Blogger a woman found said...

Amy I'm so glad you wrote on this topic. It's one I've prayed about writing/sharing about, from my own personal experience, but I just haven't yet known how to do so. I am one of "those" women, or I was rather. I became enslaved to pornography in my marriage and was delivered from it's poisonous bonds as I looked to Jesus. He's purified what was once perverted and now when I see "those" women or see men callously using their lives for their own pleasures my heart breaks! God has given me a tender-pure heart towards those in the bonds of sexual sin and pornography because He's given me His eyes. He sees them/me/us as little children, worth His very life! I really believe it takes that pure love of Christ in us that, "despises even the garment defiled by the flesh" (Jude 1:22-23), but loves the soul so much that we say, "We don't condemn you, Christ doesn't condemn you... He died for you... go and sin no more." (John 8:10-12) I pray we would see ourselves as not being without sin so as to not cast the first stone. I pray the Lord would send us to them. I pray that the work we cannot do would be done in the Spirit and that we would just be willing to touch and reach past those defiled garments with compassion and love pointing to the cross of Christ.

Bless you!
Sheila

November 25, 2008 at 7:28 AM  
Blogger LauraLee Shaw said...

Incredible post, Amy. I do believe that we will be reading a good number of books on this subject very soon, FOR WOMEN. In the area I live, I can't tell you the number of women I know who watch pornography with their husbands (they're not Christians, but still). One of these women told me that she was never open to it before Oprah mentioned it on one of her shows.

Some have even become enslaved to it by living out their fantasies through another woman on the screen. In a world where sitcoms joke about threesomes, celebrities of the same gender kiss in front of the masses and reality shows have taken over the mainstream, this is a HUGE issue of concern and prayer for me.

I'm glad you hit it out loud. We must not bury our heads in the sand...this is a bigger problem in our society than anyone knows.

ON another note, we had a missionary speak at our church about human sex trafficking. Many of these young girls are forced to do what they're doing on the screen. Breaks my heart into a million pieces.

November 25, 2008 at 1:42 PM  
Blogger Joanne Sher said...

What an amazing post! I'm just like you - I didn't think of "those women" as people. Thank you for reminding me to change my perspective. Excellent.

November 25, 2008 at 2:01 PM  
Blogger LilBear said...

Wow. This really made me see all the other sides to these girls and women. It breaks my heart but opens my eyes. Thank you, Amy.

November 25, 2008 at 8:51 PM  
Blogger Laurie Ann said...

Amy, this was a beautiful piece that gives me a totally new perspective on this horrible industry...thank you for writing it, and God forgive my judgemental heart.

November 26, 2008 at 7:31 AM  
Blogger Buffy said...

A timely reminder to judge only the sin and look upon the sinner with compassion.

November 30, 2008 at 6:02 AM  

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