Speak Eagle

Freedom for Sex Slaves

Today is Labor Day. The day we all celebrate our ability to work by taking a break.

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But a few keep right on working.

Like Autumn, my courageous friend who is working at a safe house right now in the Middle East, using dance therapy to help girls experience freedom who had been trafficked as sex slaves by terrorists.

She wrote an update recently about her work that gave me GOOSEBUMPS. With her permission, I wanted to share it with you here: 

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“Taught my first dance therapy class, and it was pretty much my favorite thing I’ve ever done. Somehow, it was even sweeter than every mountain I’ve climbed and waterfall I’ve jumped in… That’s saying a lot.

The girls LOVED it! I haven’t seen their faces so bright since they arrived. We’re in trauma counseling sessions with them multiple hours a day and have to work through so much heaviness, so you can imagine my joy at seeing them get to do something peaceful, therapeutic, and just plain fun. They’re still kids, but they haven’t gotten to have fun since they were kidnapped and their families were displaced by the terrorist group. I had the honor of coaching them through steps and movements that gave them an opportunity to express the unspeakable. Sometimes pain is so deep that there’s only so much talking you can do.

The girls did SO well. They are SO brave to do such a vulnerable thing after the shame that has been thrown on them. I had them mirror me just so I could watch their faces light up when I said, ‘You’re getting it! You’re a beautiful dancer!’

My words are SO simple. But these girls don’t hear things like that. They don’t have people come alongside them and ask them what their dreams are. In fact, most of them start out pretty uncomfortable when asked questions like this, and we have to coax it out of them before we can empower them in their abilities.

We tried a harder step towards the end of class, it took me 3 times to get them to understand through translation, and another 5 or 6 times to get them all in sync with the choreography. When they finally got it, I stopped doing it in front of them as an example and they slowed down while their faces flooded with terror. I yelled, ‘No keep going, I believe in you!’ and they stuck their chins up, and went through the step until every one of their little feet were perfectly in sync.

When I squealed and started clapping with excitement, they cheered and rushed me until all 11 of their faces were buried into a group hug around me. They were so proud of themselves and so empowered. They celebrated (this included a crowd surf- hilarious and ridiculously awesome).

BEST. DAY. EVER.

I have never been so humbled at the reality of how small my offering is, and how great the impact it can have when placed in the hands of our God.

When I say that a tiny offering of mine has been made great by a creative God, the same is true for you. Whatever the gifts He gave you- and yes, you have them- give them back to Him and He will show you how to give them away. It’s a simple act of bravery when you say ‘yes’ to following Him anywhere that will change the world by His glory. All of you have mighty gifts for changing the world with His good news.”

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On Labor Day or any other day, God doesn’t take a break from working. And today, at a little safe house in the Middle East, He is at work, laboring to use Autumn’s gift of dance to birth healing and freedom in a precious group of girls.

May we, too, have the courage to offer our gifts, however small we think they are, believing by faith that God will birth what is beautiful in His time, for His glory.