Sprinkled with Joy

I always feel compelled to share what God is doing in my heart towards the injustice of human trafficking during the month dedicated to bringing awareness to this heinous injustice.

Normally as I write I am surrounded by the comforts of home.  Sitting on my plush couch, sipping a cup of hot coffee, wrapped in a warm blanket.  This year as I write I am sitting far away from home in a different kind of home especially dedicated to the lives of sweet children impacted by the horrors of human trafficking.

The team I am with is working in a home filled with sweet ones who were rescued from the brothels where they were born and raised.  The brothels are not a place intended for children to be.  Some children do not make it out of these horrible places alive.  Children are robbed from their innocence and freedom while behind the walls of these brothels.  Their surroundings are far from comfortable.  Whether they are under the bed their mother uses for “clients” or hidden in a hole in the wall…this is no place for a child to grow up.

Fortunately the children I have been spending the last couple of weeks with were saved from the grasp of the enemy and brought into a safe place.

Sharing smiles, laughter, food, games, songs, and God’s word with these sweet children has been one of the hardest yet most joy-filled times of my life.

Each child has a story that cannot be told without tears falling from your eyes, but God reminded me He holds these tears.

During worship one night God spoke to my heart about this verse in Psalms that says He collects our tears in jars.  I was trying to find this verse in my Bible but instead I found another:

Psalm 126:5 Those who sow in tears will reap with songs of joy.

When my eyes met these words in my Bible I instantly thought of my time here with these children.  There have been many tears falling from my eyes.  There have been even more in my heart.  I think of what these children have been through, what they are still going through, and all they have to face ahead of them.  I think of the ones that have already been sold and are just being “held” in a safe place until they “mature” to the wee age of 9 to follow their mother’s footsteps in the brothels.  I think of the people tirelessly fighting for their freedom against corrupt justice systems.  I think of the stories that were never intended to be penned.  All I can do in response is cry and ask why. Why did this have to happen?  Why do these little innocent children have to be affected by someone else’s brokenness?

This verse gave me a surprising answer.  We are sowing in tears here, but reaping with joy is worth it all.  As I reflected on this verse and what it meant for our time together with these children, God showed me what He was doing with those tears in bottles up in Heaven.  He is cleansing out the pain and sorrow from those tears.  Those bottles are left filled with only the joy of the Lord.  I could picture our team dancing and singing with these sweet little ones while God sprinkled His joy over us.

Honestly, our team has felt these sprinkles of joy every time we share His love in this home.  When we first walked into the home we felt a sense of hopelessness.  God has washed that away with His joy.  He has transformed the hearts of women who dedicate their lives to these children.  He has transformed these children.  He has transformed our team as we witness a piece of God’s broken heart fighting for His precious ones here in this home and the ones still in the brothels.

Being here in this home has taken me far from my comforts but it has brought me close to God’s broken heart.  I am thankful to be in this uncomfortable place, near to God, because through the tears, I know His joy is coming.