Expanding on a recent sermon titled, "A Window of Ultimate Reality," we are having conversations that grow our imaginations for ultimate reality—for Christ and the world he makes new. Enjoy a conversation with City Church deacon Regan Huey as we grow our imaginations for the ultimate reality of freedom. Join us this week as we continue our series, A World with Windows, and mark Freedom Sunday in partnership with International Justice Mission, a City Church mission partner dedicated to ending slavery.
Despite growing up in a loving home, I have struggled with feeling the reality that I am loved by God.
Shortly after moving to Houston, I attended a City Church event focused on ending human trafficking and prostitution. I was shocked to find that this is so prevalent in the world, and in my new city no less. Over 25 percent of trafficked people in the U.S. are in Texas and another 22 percent of victims travel through Texas. I immediately thought of the women involved and wondered how they must feel about themselves.
It's easy for me to think that I'm not like women in the sex industry. I've never received money for sex, so I'm different, right? But if you have ever looked to men to validate your worth, through physical interaction or not, you can relate. If you've ever used power in a relationship to get something, you can relate. If you've ever been taken advantage of, you can relate.
I signed up to be a mentor in an organization that seeks to empower the exploited. I had no idea what I was getting myself into, and I quickly learned of the darkness that exists. My first mentee described herself to me as disgusting. I remembered when I felt worthless and realized that though our background was very different, we shared a common trait—not feeling God's love for us and not knowing our value.
I used to enter into ministry expecting to see a happy ending. While there have been moments of joy, I've learned these stories don't always end tied with a pretty bow. The devastation runs deep and it takes years to unravel, but God's love extends into the darkest places, the places where you feel disgusting and the places where you don't think anyone can love you. It's a love that expects nothing in return, and quite literally changes lives.
It wasn't until I fully grasped God's love that I began to understand my value. I learned my worth is determined by the one who created me. God loves me so much that he sent his son to die for me. Working with these women gave me the chance to remind them of their worth. They are worth dying for. These women have the opportunity to break away from physical slavery, and when we all understand how loved we are, we all have a chance to really be free.