I am not a fan of winter – never have been, and likely never will be. The cold of our southern Ontario winters has me longing for milder spring and (better yet) warm summer.
This past weekend, we had above seasonal temperatures. It was glorious. Most winters, I find that I have to make extra effort to look after my mental health; something about winters just puts me in a funk. But this past weekend – as I spent time outdoors basking in the sun and milder temperature, thinking about my spring garden and summer barbeques – a word kept popping into my mind: hope. We all know that winter will not last forever, it is a fleeting season that comes and passes. And as spring draws nearer, we are blessed with a smattering of days with above seasonal temperatures that help sustain us as we make it through the rest of the season. The light at the end of my cold, wintery tunnel is knowing that a more joyful season (at least for me – apologies to those who may love winter but despise the heat of summer!) is waiting for me a couple of weeks down the road.
And while I was thinking of this hope, I couldn’t help but wonder “what glimmers of hope do victims of commercial sexual exploitation see to help them get through their season of suffering? What is their light at the end of the tunnel?”
We know that in Canada, services and supports specific to the unique needs of the commercially sexually exploited are few and far between. Don’t get me wrong, there are many wonderful people and organizations doing incredible work across this country to serve those who are commercially sexually exploited! But we also know that the need far outweighs what is currently available in our country.
We at Restorations want to be a glimmer of hope. We want to be a light at the end of their tunnel, a place for them to heal after their season of despair as they enter into a new season of joy, peace, love and hope.
Beyond being a physical place of hope, we at Restorations bask in the truth that Christ is our ultimate hope. Regardless of the season of suffering we are enduring – illness, economic difficulties, depression, exploitation, sadness, loneliness, etc. – we take comfort in the fact that Christ is our help, our shield, our refuge.
We wait in hope for the LORD; he is our help and our shield. ~ Psalm 33:20 (NIV)
You are my refuge and shield; I have put my hope in your word. ~ Psalm 119:114 (NIV)
You will be secure, because there is hope; you will look about you and take your rest in safety. ~ Job 11:18 (NIV)
Author: Jennifer Lucking