I started crying while sitting at a traffic light the other day. The tears came out of nowhere and caught me off guard; but the truth is, I knew exactly where the tears came from.
Five days earlier, I was in Spain with our local partner in Madrid. I visited survivors in our safe home there and spent time on the streets with a team reaching out to women in need of rescue. The time was characterized by a potent combination of darkness and hope, tragedy and redemption.
I hate sexual slavery with a fiery passion. I hate everything about it. Theinjustice, the violence, the dehumanization, the helplessness, the hopelessness. The way it preys on society’s most vulnerable children and the way it permeates every culture by riding in on the coattails of apathy and indifference. But the hate is not what motivates me. In fact, when I think too much about how much I hate slavery, I feel overwhelmed, angry, and discouraged. Hate may be one kind of motivation, but it’s heavy, fleeting, and tainted by despair. What really motivates me—what sustains me—is that lives are being transformed. Good is overcoming evil. Hope is proving itself more powerful than despair. We are motivated by what we love, not by what we hate.
I love freedom and human flourishing. I love when people are treated with dignity and value. I love when men and women feel confident, strong, independent, and beautiful. I love when people dream big. I love when others know that they are loved unconditionally and when they feel like they belong. And I especially love that all those things are possible no matter what someone has been through. I love that there is always—yes, always—hope.
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