Sometimes the written word just doesn’t cut it for me. Today I made a video. Please watch to the end. And regardless of how I feel about how I look or sound in this video, I care about the message and I want to get it out. So please share it if you are inclined to do so. (Transcript below.)
p.s. If you want to make a donation to our Dressember campaign this year, follow this link:
Transcript of the video: A Call to Dignity
This morning my 8-year-old daughter is playing with play dough and listening to Kids’ Bop music while 2 million girls as young as my daughter’s age…MY daughter’s age…wake up believing they have no choice but succumb to sexual exploitation to pay back a “debt” or earn their freedom or keep their families from being killed. Most of these girls are under the age of 12 and serve up to 1,500 clients a year.*
Sometimes hearing numbers makes me numb to the need. I get so overwhelmed with the horror that I turn and walk the other way because I can’t handle it.
Did I just say that?
I can’t handle it?!
And yet an 8 year old woke up today believing she is nothing other than an object to be intimately violated – and may not even realize that she has anything so sacred that could be violated.
While my daughter plays with play dough.
I don’t like to wear dresses because they make me feel vulnerable. I am stronger and more protected in pants. I don’t call attention to my own beauty in pants.
But every day in December I have slipped into vulnerability to declare its dignity. I have put on clothing that makes me feel weak and unprotected to begin to identify with women and children who feel helpless – who no one protects. I have “dressed up” and put effort into my appearance, proclaiming that beauty can be enjoyed without being objectified and exploited.
And my 8 year old wore dresses nearly every day this month in her own innocence – because she likes wearing dresses and wanted to identify with her Mommy.
Each one of us has the opportunity to fight for dignity and freedom and justice of all people. You don’t have to donate to International Justice Mission through our Dressember campaign to make a difference. There are LOTS of worthy organizations that live as bright beacons of light in the darkness of horror. There are LOTS of horrors in the world to fight – that we each unknowingly contribute to every day.
If you want to have a significant impact on every single one of them, you can…
BELIEVE in your OWN dignity and beauty.
BELIEVE that you have something sacred that can be violated.
BELIEVE that when you objectify another, you diminish your own humanity.
BELIEVE that when you put yourself down, you influence others to question their own value.
BELIEVE that you really do make a difference.
BELIEVE that you are Loved.
Because you are.
And in so doing, we will change the world.