I was honored to participate in a recently released documentary called Rape For Profit. It was released in the theaters in our area but is now available on iTunes. The filmmakers, two young men who graduated out of our ministry over 7 years ago, invited me to share about the power of encouraging girls to grasp their bigger part in the story. (Jada Pinkett Smith jumped on as one of the executive producers…so that is pretty cool!)
In the trailer, there is a powerful quote about prostitution not being the oldest occupation of women but rather the oldest oppression of women. Wow. That quote stopped me right in my tracks. Oppression.
In many aspects of a girl’s life she is told that she is weak. Not always on purpose but it can be heard in the underlining themes.
In church we talk a lot of about men protecting women. Yes. True. Good.
Can I tell you the best way to protect a woman?
I have met so many girls and women over the years who have been labeled as weak by others but when I sit with them and hear their stories and see what they have overcome…I am blown away by their strength.
The girl who lost a parent and was neglected by her remaining family but never lost sight of her potential. Even now as she works to attend university without the support of those around her.
The girl who rose out of poverty to attend a private university and find her way to the mission field.
The woman who lost her son and turned her grief into a ministry for caring for the brokenhearted.
Girls who would appear victims rising above the pain and the sadness of their lives to be world changers.
How? I think it started when someone told them they had a voice! That their story mattered. That they had purpose. And by doing so protected them from being vulnerable from those who target the broken and weak.
Protect a girl by empowering a girl.
There is a time to be the voice for girls. And there is a time to tell her that she has a voice and to give her a platform to speak.
There is a time to act on her behalf. And there is a time to tell her to act and to live fully in her calling.
Every Sunday or Wednesday you get to communicate a message to the girls in your ministry…you answer a question they are dying to understand. Am I weak? Do I matter? What can I do with my life?
Give them a voice.
Remind them of their potential and of their part in the story.
Provide avenues for them to find their giftedness.
Protect them by empowering them.