Tonight at Liberty Center, a couple Romanian anti-trafficking groups joined together to rent the theater and show the documentary Nefarious I: Merchant of Souls. I found out about it just this afternoon and had a bunch of things to do–I had a bunch of posters to put up and am in the middle of packing for my move tomorrow–but this is one movie I knew I had to see. (When I first heard about it two or three years ago, I knew I had to see it. But by the time it finally came near me, I had moved to Romania.)
My initial response was feeling overwhelmed, disgusted, hopeful, angry, helpless, hurt, guilty… all at the same time. It was a wild ride of emotions for sure as the documentary went all across the globe talking with all sorts of people, from former victims and traffickers to government officials and “johns.” The stories were heart-wrenching.
Humans are created as royalty, children of the greatest King, but look at what we do to each other….
Posted in Bucharest
Tagged film, human trafficking, justice, masturbation, merchant of souls, nefarious, pornography, reckless, safety, sex, sex industry, sex trafficking, sexual exploitation, video, wisdom
Jake and I joined Alex on Tuesday at Piata Obor to pass out gospel tracts near the subway station. I love the work Alex is doing, and his zeal for sharing the gospel (driven by his own experience of radical transformation when he discovered the message of the cross) is infectious and challenging.
Alex is a guy who really doesn’t care what he looks like out there sharing the gospel, knowing it’s by nature foolishness (1 Corinthians 1:18-31). It’s an unnerving and challenging but also inspiring characteristic. I’ve been in the subway with Alex when he’s started a conversation with me loud enough to be called open-air preaching, and the results were similar. My first time joining Alex for evangelism, he convinced me to grab his bullhorn and start preaching… in English… with no interpreter. I’m still not sure how he convinced me that was a good idea. Other times, he’s stopped young women on the street and asked them, as a grandfather might, “Why are you dressed like this? Don’t you know you’re causing guys to stumble? Don’t you care about their souls?” Hanging out with him can be, well, embarrassing.
The bottom line, though, is this: if hell is real, and if sin destroys men here and for eternity, and if Jesus really rescues men, then the gospel is worth your and my embarrassment.
Posted in Bucharest
Tagged addiction, alex grigorescu, alexandru grigorescu, ashamed, bucharest, embarrassing, embarrassment, evangelism, foolish, foolishness, gospel, pornography, shame, tracts
Our meeting with Andreea was very different from our meeting with Ryan and Andrea. Andreea is a recent college graduate and has a deeply passionate heart for seeing victims of human trafficking brought the freedom and justice they were made for. She studied law in college (her thesis was all about ending human trafficking) and spent some time working with IJM. She has traveled Romania learning the stories of those trafficked and trying to understand how to end this horrible crime.
Hearing Andreea tell the story of her mother’s friend who became a victim of trafficking put a very personal touch on things. Now, it wasn’t just ideas we were talking about but real people, people who knew someone I was talking with.
I just finished a tract that tells all about how I came to find Jesus. Since not all of you know who I am and where I come from, I figured I’d post it here for you to enjoy. My story is below:
I always kind of believed in God—I was baptized as a baby, I grew up going to church, my family even prayed before meals—but I lived my life as if God was no more real than a fairy tale. Over time, I began to call myself an atheist.
I was 12 when I first found porn online, but things really went bad when I was 15. That was when I decided to stop feeling guilty about porn, to stop calling it sin, and to simply accept it as human nature. That was one of the dumbest decisions I ever made.
While struggling with a growing porn addiction, I also began to experience heavy depression. I remember lying awake many nights seeing no hope for the future and wishing I would die. I saw no reason to go on living.