Edge of Faith March 2017 - Page 57

I am glad to hear that too. So you know, Michelle, I just finished reading Forgotten Girls and, I guess, it was originally published in 2009, and then republished as an expanded version - by IVP in 2014. What I would like to do is read you a couple of stats out of the book really quick. There are these bullet points that just dumbfounded me; 80% of the world’s — and these stats are in reference to women and children, so they are the ones that make up all of these stats, women and children — 80% of the world’s refugees, 70% of the poorest of the poor, two thirds of the world’s illiterate, four million annual victims of human trafficking. Four million. 80% of those, who have never heard about Jesus Christ. Those are very sad stats, but I was also curious, is that still the stat today? Or is it better or worse?

Michelle: Well, actually, most of them are updated statistics. That is one reason why we wanted to republish the book, was to add and make sure we had the most up-to-date research and statistics throughout. And then to add those discussion questions and prayer points so that people could really grab hold of ways, as Kay was saying, how important it is for people to hear this kind of information and then be able to take some action. So, the one stat that, if I were redoing that section that you just read from today, would be the human trafficking statistics. Thankfully, every year there is deeper research out of the International Labor Organization and the global slavery index that has come out. It shows that there are now 30 million plus slaves in the world today, up to 17 thousand are trafficked into the United States from other countries. Which is a very important point, I think. If we are only focused on our own shores we miss that countries are interrelated. These are international criminal cartels that traffic in human beings. So, what happens in other countries is very important as they're exporting victims here. It is now globally, a 150 billion dollar criminal industry. Just last year, I was quoting 32 billion dollar a year criminal industry, from previous research, but as the research goes deeper, from really reputable sources, those are the ones that would really need to be updated. Of course, about 70% of all traffic victims are women and children, unless you narrow the focus to sex slavery, which is 98% female. That will really give you pause, when we think about the horrors of that criminal industry.

Yeah, it is very depressing, really. Well Kay, ... like I said, I just finished reading Forgotten Girls, and personally, I thought it really draws you in. I mean, every story read gets more heart-wrenching than the next one did, but yet I can’t seem to stop, because I want to know what all of these atrocities are and what is happening in the world. Some of them have a happy, or happier, ending and some just end up sad, or unknown, which we will talk about. But, I found that I had to jump to the next story, because, you know, I wanted to know what happened to all of these children and young girls, and about the kind of lives, painful lives, really, that they have had to endure and how they fight evil. I know one of the hard things for me is I have with some of the other interviews I have had on this topic and some other ones with children is, when Christians witness to them, they have to start with just kind of showing what love is because it is hard for these children to grasp, when you say “Jesus is love” and they’re like, “what is love?”