Posted by: Omar C. Garcia | September 18, 2010

Champions for Justice

Runners at the starting line.

A few months ago, Kingsland’s Justice Ministry Team discussed ways to raise awareness about human trafficking in our own community and beyond. We currently support justice initiatives on three continents and have started addressing trafficking issues in our own community. When we learned that September 18 was the start of Human Trafficking Awareness Week in Houston, we prayed about how we might help educate our own community about this issue. Kelly Isenberger, one of the runners on our team, suggested hosting a community run and family walk. The rest is history. Kelly coordinated and mobilized dozens of volunteers to make our Just Run for a Just Cause a reality. Starting at 5:00 AM today, our volunteers met at the church to prepare for our race and walk. Today, months of careful planning came together as we welcomed more than four-hundred runners and walkers to our campus.

In the previous weeks, hundreds of people who received information about the race and walk visited our justice blog to learn more about human trafficking. And, both the Houston Chronicle and Katy Times newspapers featured articles about our Just Run for a Just Cause. Discovering that victims of human trafficking work in spas and cantinas not far from our own comfortable neighborhoods and crepe-myrtle-lined boulevards was a shocking revelation to many. Many people have asked what they can do to help. After I recently spoke to a group of women about human trafficking, one sweet lady wrote…

Pastor, I’ve got to be honest here. I am not sufficiently fearless in the Lord to venture into those dark places run by Satan’s foot soldiers yet. I wish I were. I’m just not. But I have come to the conclusion that I must do all that I’m able, and I am capable of praying for the teams and these captive women. I can help fill gift bags for these women, and I can certainly write encouraging notes to them.  Do you still need that done?
I love it when people are willing to take ownership of an issue and do something to help. This lady has committed to pray for our teams that connect with women in prostitution. Her involvement matters and will make a difference. Today, four-hundred-plus people from throughout the Katy community got involved in our 5k run and 1 mile family walk to benefit local justice initiatives. And, each of these individuals and those in their respective spheres of influence learned about a terrible injustice that takes place in our own community to the red light districts of South Asia. In the coming week we will complete the refurbishing and furnishing of a local safe house for girls rescued from prostitution — just in time to provide a secure place for a young lady who left that dark world this past week. Others will follow in the coming weeks. We are able to do this because people who care are willing to pray, give, and to get involved in the things that break God’s heart.

I am grateful for Kelly and each of our Justice Ministry Team members who worked so hard to make today’s Just Run for a Just Cause a success. And I am thankful for each runner and walker and for the representatives of local justice organizations who were in attendance today. It will be exciting to see how God may lead many of these folks to get involved and make a difference in the coming months. Those who traffic young ladies to our community are in for a fight. We will continue to raise awareness, to act on behalf of the oppressed, to speak for those who have no voice, and to raise more champions for justice.

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