I always welcome the sacredness of Holy Week with its invitation to pause and reflect on the generosity of Christ’s compassionate and sacrificial love for the world.
We know that the horrors of working in a warzone are many. Still I have seen time and time again how God’s miraculous power brings forth beautiful transformations, breathing new life and hope into what were thought to be impossible situations.
An alumnus of LUV’s trafficking prevention programs at New Life Ministry (NLM), our partners along the border of Darfur, recently shared how he experienced this transformation in his own life:
To be honest, NLM has been a blessing to me… When we started our first classes under the trees in 2004/2005, it was thick bushes. I still remember that there were some human skulls around the school compound. It was so scary and hopeless. It looked like the valley of dry bones mentioned in the Bible in the book of Ezekiel 37.
In the Ezekiel passage, God invites the prophet through a powerful vision to witness and participate in restoring life into a desolate valley where only the dry bones of the community remained. Growing up in a village that had experienced both genocide and mass human trafficking after militia raids, Jake* was one of the first recipients of life-restoring care that your generosity continues to make possible today. He continues:
When God sent James Lual Atak, the founder of NLM, just like He sent Ezekiel to go and prophesy to the dry bones. Now, as we speak, the dry bones are alive; they know how to read and write, they have a great future, and one day we shall see the products of NLM leading by example.
I am one of the dry bones of NLM and a true witness of the great transformation of NLM. From thick bushes and a valley of dry bones to the best school in the country with amazing dormitories where we have electricity and water. We have primary school and high school with a computer lab. We have a clinic, church, football pitch, volleyball pitch and many others
In a book I once read, the author shared, “When a person desires something, the whole universe will conspire in helping to achieve his or her dream.” Frankly speaking, the whole universe did conspire on our behalf – the vulnerable remnants of a long civil war in Sudan; by giving us this precious opportunity to find safety and study in NLM. I am thankful to God for these amazing things. Words cannot express how grateful I am.
Jake was protected and educated through our anti-trafficking network and became one of the first to graduate from high school in 2016. After being recognized for his academic excellence, he was recruited to attend a prestigious university in Morocco. Today, he is in the third year of his Bachelor’s program and has just begun a radiology internship. He adds, “I am super excited, and I can’t wait to apply the clinical knowledge and skills acquired in the field of radiology.”
Like Jake, the children and women in our programs know the mystery of resurrection to be true in their very bones.
Because you care, hundreds of kids in war-torn homes and communities are being protected from human trafficking.
From the ashes of despair, your partnership and prayers make new life possible in some of the hardest-to-reach places in our world today.
To make an Easter donation in honor of Jake and support our economic development initiatives that include continuing education scholarships for future changemakers, please click here.
May the Easter hope that overflows in Jake’s life also abound in yours!