Worship with us this ‘Annual Day of Prayer for Victims of Human Trafficking’
Join with The Salvation Army this Sept. 26 for the Annual Day of Prayer for Victims of Human Trafficking.
“The Salvation Army is deeply committed to fighting and responding to human trafficking,” said Territorial Social Justice Ministries Director Jacqui Larsson. “We believe that prayer is a powerful tool to fight for freedom and work toward a world free from exploitation, and we invite you to join Salvationists around the world to corporately cry out for justice and freedom. Whether you decide to lead a prayer walk in your community, teach a Bible study or pray on this topic at your corps, we hope you will join us to pray specifically for the survivors, the perpetrators and those on the frontlines.”
Today, more than 40 million men, women and children worldwide are impacted by human trafficking. Among these, more than 15 million are in forced marriages, more than 24 million are in forced labor situations and about 30 percent of those exploited are children. As followers of Jesus, God has called us to speak out against injustice and work toward justice for those experiencing oppression. The prayers and cries of individuals who are oppressed and exploited are heartfelt, and God hears them. God cares about those who are oppressed and exploited, and we should too.
Join with us in crying out for justice and freedom this Annual Day of Prayer for Victims of Human Trafficking, starting with reflecting on the words of this newly released music video, “Do I Matter?”
Read the Parable of the Good Samaritan in Luke 10:25-37.
See the parable depicted in cartoon. Watch this video story of the Good Samaritan with your family.
Talk about the message
When asked what the most important commandment was, Jesus said that the greatest commandment is to “Love the Lord your God with all of your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind” and the second to “Love your neighbor as yourself” (Luke 10:27). Jesus was then immediately asked who counts as a neighbor and he responded with a parable. The person who posed the challenge was a lawyer who specialized in understanding and interpreting the Law of Moses, the accepted foundation of social and economic life.
Being a neighbor for him meant belonging to one’s tribe and one’s race with a responsibility to look after them. Jesus’ story takes place on the road between Jerusalem in the mountains and the city of Jericho, about 18 miles away. The ground between the cities was rough, with few inhabitants. It was frequented by thieves. Different people are mentioned in the story. The person who is mugged would be understood to be a Jew. The priest and the Levite are Jewish religious leaders who have a good knowledge of God’s laws. The final person in the story is a Samaritan, a person from the province of Samaria.
The relationship between the Jews and Samaritans was marked by strong cultural prejudice, but the Samaritans’ actions inspired us to care for those in need, whoever they might be. He offered practical help which involved accepting responsibility that the person was provided with the care and the resources to put him on his feet again; personal help, encouragement, friendship, and dare we say it, love. We, the church of Jesus Christ, are to be a light shining in the darkness of this world. We are to show forth the excellencies of God. We are to declare the love of God. We are to show the transforming power of God. A person does not need to live controlled by the powers of darkness. There is deliverance and help from God.
Reflect and discuss
- In the command “love your neighbor as yourself,” where do you draw the line? Who am I meant to love?
- Can you think of people in your country and community who are considered “outsiders?”
- How would you describe the care that the Samaritan gave the injured man? Do you think it was adequate?
- What does this passage teach us about the care you should give to others today?
- The relevance of the parable today is evident. As you encounter people who have been robbed and battered, potential victims of human trafficking, what can you do?
Sing a prayer
Find a version of one of these songs to sing along to or simply sing acapella praying the words of the song as you do.
- “My Chains are Gone” (I’ve been set free. My God, my Savior has ransomed me)
- “Here I am to Worship” (Light of the world you stepped down into darkness)
- “Light into Darkness” (Be a light in the darkness, be a heart to the heartless)
- “Way Maker” (Light in the darkness, my God that is who you are)
- “In Christ Alone” (There in the ground his body lay, light of the world by darkness slain; Then bursting forth in glorious day, up from the grave he rose again!)
- “Amazing Grace” (I once was lost, but now am found, was blind, but now I see)
- “Be Thou My Vision” (High King of heaven, my victory won. May I reach heaven’s joys, O bright heaven’s sun)
- “They need you, They need me, They need Christ” (There are people hurting in the world out there)
- “People need the Lord” (We are called to take his light to a world where wrong seems right)
Close in prayer
Dear God, we pray for victims of human trafficking …for those who have been dehumanized and held captive by the greed and violence of a broken world. For girls and boys, women, and men who are bought and sold and abused by those who have forgotten the eternal value of a human soul. May they rediscover their worth in you. And may we affirm their worth as individuals who are made in your image. Lord, reveal the way our choices may play a part in keeping others captive by creating demand for more slaves and give us courage to make different choices. Give us eyes to see injustice and exploitation and give us the courage to speak out against evil. Use us to bring light into the darkened corners of this world, that they may not remain dark forever. May your light expose the evil deeds of the captors, and may your love create a change of heart within those who are perpetrators of human trafficking. Use us to loosen the chains of injustice and let the oppressed go free. We pray for an end to the evil that is human trafficking, and we pray that the victims of trafficking may find restoration and healing in you. Amen.
- How do we treat everyone with love and kindness, as if they were our neighbor? Get the Do Good Family Roadmap and take a 4-week journey for families in how to be a good neighbor. Follow the guide to see what the Bible says about the art of neighboring and take tangible steps together on your printable roadmap to be a caring, helpful, welcoming and supportive neighbor right where you are.
- If you think someone is a victim of human trafficking, please call the National Human Trafficking Hotline at 1-888-3737-888 or text 233733.
- For more information and resources on The SA Justice Department, visit SAJustice.US.