One look at the International Justice Mission (IJM) web site reveals the story of 14 slaves held at a rock quarry in Bangledore, India. IJM helped gather local police and government support to raid the quarry and free those being held.
These kinds of stories are happening every day, though most don’t include a rescue.
Seeing the documentary Call + Response has caused me to think about what my response should be now that I’ve been somewhat educated regarding the problem of slavery. With an estimated 27 million people held in slavery around the world, what action could I take that could possibly be effective against a problem so large? What do modern abolitionists do?
First of all, we ask God, “Where would you have me join your work to end the injustice of human slavery in our world?” Then we listen for God’s voice as he leads us in taking steps. Not every person is called to fund, lead or participate in every mission. However, God is certainly calling all of us to unique participation in what he is doing in the world.
Second, we educate ourselves on the issue. We read the news, with a keen eye for stories about oppressed people. We sign up for e-newsletters at sources sensitive to human trafficking. Sources like International Justice Mission, Free the Slaves, Not For Sale and IRIN Humanitarian News are excellent (Thanks Krista).
Finally, we choose to be aware of the value of every decision. Every huge moral crisis can be thwarted by a million small steps by a million people. In fact, most of the moral dilemmas in our lives only involve small decisions and these small decisions make up the fabric of our existence.
I highly recommend the “33 Responses” list on the Call + Response web site. Krista and I have strengthened our resolve on some of the things we were already doing, while also commiting to some new steps that we had not considered before now.
Galatians 4:7 says that we are no longer slaves, but sons who have an inheritance. As former slaves, we have plenty of motivation to continue thinking of ways to participate in God’s freedom mission.