I’m glad to have Sara Pomeroy sharing with us on the blog today. Sara is the Founder and Executive Director of the Richmond Justice Initiative. Here post is such an appropriate follow-up to yesterday’s post discussing discipleship and justice. It all starts here:
I was on my way to this speaking engagement dragging my feet a bit (not gonna lie) as I was not sure of the turn out and, as I suspected, there was a small group of 6 people. Given the crowd I decided to gather in a group together and share from my heart, but I wanted to hear their stories first of how they initially heard about the issue of Modern Day Slavery.
My message that evening was my personal story of going from worship leader to freedom fighter, the walk of faith it has been, and then informing them of how they can join the battle against injustice.
“When it comes to the work of justice, prayer is where we begin, prayers is how the battle is fought and prayer is how the battle against injustice is won.”
That was the point I wanted to drive home, then end in a time of prayer for the movement and give everyone a chance to pray out loud for various needs like prayer for the victims, perpetrators, law enforcement, non-government organizations and the Church.
That was the moment when I found out that someone in the group had never prayed before. She asked, “So, when you say pray…what do you mean exactly?” We explained that it was just a conversation with God and that you can just tell Him what is on your heart then ask for His help.
Surprisingly, she was willing to give it a try.
“This morning I was asking myself what can I possibly do to help these victims that I am both horrified and heart broken over and I had no idea where to even start. Then I found this group tonight. This group gives me much hope. The message tonight answered the question I was asking this morning, and now I understand where I need to start. I understand now that the answer to ending this injustice is prayer. So here I am God. I am asking you to please help.”
I wish I could have recorded her prayer. Not only was it one of the most honest, real and desperate prayers I have ever heard, but it was also the first prayer she ever prayed.
I was blown away by her willingness to go to a God that she did not know to ask Him for His help, that she was SO desperately wanting to know what the answer to injustice was, and that when she found out, she just went for it!
But the amazing God news does not end there!
After our meeting concluded, I asked her how she heard of this meeting, and I found out that she was not even a student at the university I was speaking at, but she had been following a twitter account that happened to retweet about this event tonight, and JUST that morning she experienced her point of desperation. She knew she was looking for answers and others that were also in this fight, so she drove to the campus just for this event.
She is a full-time mom and works full time as well, so she knew that she could not do something that required a lot of her time. She found great relief and comfort in tonight’s message, and she stated, “Now, I know what I can do; I can definitely pray!”
I was blown away. I am still blown away. God never fails to amaze me. He never stops showing his goodness, and that night was no exception.
That evening (after I repented for having a bad attitude about the evening), I was in tears, rejoicing over His faithfulness and humbled by His greatness.
My commitment and belief in the absolute importance of leading the justice movement with prayer was renewed. But He also revealed yet another result of what can happen when prayer and going to the God of Justice is proclaimed as the solution to injustice. That is that people like this woman who was so desperately seeking an answer to a horrific injustice that she was willing to pray to the God of Justice if it means that it will make a difference for these victims of oppression and violence.
Fellow believers, the issue of human trafficking has never reached more peoples’ eyes and ears than at the present time. People of all faiths (or no faith at all) are all equally horrified at this injustice and are ALL searching for answers, and we have a unique opportunity to show them the God of Justice, who is the ultimate Good News.
Sara has had the privilege of mobilizing and educating the Commonwealth’s community on the issue of modern day slavery in Virginia. She has spoken at universities, colleges, hospitals, pregnancy clinics, churches, forums, and symposiums on the issue. Sara is also the Virginia State Justice Advocate for International Justice Mission. IJM is a human rights agency that secures justice for victims of slavery, sexual exploitation and other forms of violent oppression.