photo 1 (20)It’s Front Line Friday and it is my privilege to introduce you to Diane Drake. Diane is a wife, mother and an active member of Lost Mountain Baptist Church in Powder Springs, Georgia. She is a lot like many of you. I’ve chosen to feature her on Front Line Fridays because I want readers to understand that you don’t have to be the founder of an organization to have an impact on the fight against sex trafficking, although she’s about to launch one. There is a place in this fight for all of us. I hope Diane’s message will resonate with you and encourage you to find your place in the fight.

When and where did you first hear about the issue of sex trafficking?

It was several years ago. I heard my two older sons talking about this issue. I’d never heard about such a thing. They educated me which only caused me to investigate more.

What books did you read to learn more about the issue? Who did you walk with? What conferences did you attend?

Honestly, I did my research online. I just did a Google search on the issue and read everything I could find. Then when I met you, I read Rescuing Hope. It helps me understand a lot of what I was reading in the articles on a more personal level.

How did you first get involved in the fight?

I hosted an awareness event at my church in 2012. I brought you in to address the issue domestically and Rhonda Wilson spoke about the issue abroad. I didn’t know hardly anything about the issue, but I figured if I didn’t know about it more than likely my friends and sphere of influence didn’t either.

Over the past two years we’ve had four events at our church, just making more people aware, going deeper in our education, trying to find out what our response would be as individuals and a church to this issue.

At one of those events, I met Bethany of Solomon House, a safe home for survivors in Georgia. I learned they have needs from time to time, so that was our first tangible way of stepping into the fight. Whatever they needed, she would let me know and I would spread the word and find it for her.

We might never see the face of a survivor, but this was one way we could step into the fight. It was how we could partner with Jesus to become part of the solution.

What organization are you with?

Until recently, I’ve just been educating myself and hosting awareness events. I heard about an organization out of North Carolina called Change Purse. They take new or gently used purses and sell them to raise funds for front line organizations. We’re going to start a chapter of Change Purse at Lost Mountain Church to raise financial support for Solomon House.

What is the hardest part of what you do?

That you have to tell the story over and over before people seem to “get it” and step into the fight. It’s such an unbelievable story to tell, and to think it’s here, can be overwhelming. You have to educate people before you can activate them.

What’s the greatest blessings you’ve experienced in this work?

I had the chance to drop off welcome baskets we collected at the Night of Hope at the Atlanta Dream Center. They were for the women of Solomon House. The graciousness and gratitude was overwhelming.

What has had the greatest impact on you in this fight?

1 Thessalonians 2:7-8, which says,

“but we were gentle among you, like a mother caring for her little children. We loved you so much that we were delighted to share with you not only the gospel of God but our lives as well, because you had become so dear to us.”

I don’t want this to become just a project that we do or an assignment, but I want us to love these women and let them know they are so dear to us. We may never see them face to face but we can still love them well in providing for their needs. We can share the Gospel with them by providing Recovery Bibles for them.

If you had the opportunity to speak to the youth of today about this issue, what would you say?

The thief comes to steal, kill and destroy. When we learn of this issue we can’t turn away. We have to do something. We’re accountable for what we know.

I may never meet a survivor, but that doesn’t mean that I’m excused from being part of the solution. I am called to participate with Jesus in their healing and restoration.

It has been a pleasure to get to know Diane and hear her journey into the fight against sex trafficking. I hope it has been an encouragement to you. Some are called to start organizations. Others will write books or donate large sums of money to organizations. We all will not do the same thing, but we can all do something. What will you do?