There was nearly a physical confrontation as three young men tried to enter the church. They raised their voices in anger and disappointment. They made threats and a scene. Their names were not on the list and they were denied admittance. At the time it was unclear as to their intention. They were not family. They were not friends. They were not permitted. It turns out they were potential clients. They came to preview the young girl who was promised to them. They were told she was a prostitute in the waiting. Young. Innocent. Pure. 13.
They had been invited by the brother, mother, and grandmother of one of our girls. It was family visit time in the city, at a host church. You sign up, you come, you see your child, you leave. It’s organized, it’s protective, it’s safe. But this particular family saw it as an opportunity. Not an opportunity to see their beloved little girl. Instead, an opportunity to show her off. To market her age, her beauty, her body. Because some day she would return to them. And when she did, she was to join the family business.
Just like mom and grandma, this girl is to become a prostitute. In their eyes she already is. They are waiting for her return, because she will be able to bring in a good price. She was raised in it before and will return to it again. It’s the family business and she is family. During their visits, they are more concerned with how she looks than how she is. They are more concerned about her gaining weight than gaining an education. They are more concerned about her complexion than her protection. Her figure more than her future.
She knows this is their intention and she knows it’s not up to her. If she should return to them, she knows how her life will be. Unfortunately, someday she may actually be ordered to return to them. The family has tried to fool the judge, but yet to no avail. Someday they may actually succeed. Our prayer is they won’t.
Please pray with us that she is never put in this situation. That the judge will see the truth and that she will see her worth in God’s eyes. Pray that her time here at Shadow continues to be one of spiritual growth and maturity. Pray that she believes in Christ more and more, and in the lie less and less. When and if she leaves is out of our hands, but not out of God’s. He desires more for her life than that of a prostitute. And she does too.