"'I mean that most people who follow God, most Christians, don't understand the meaning of the word redemption. ... Iskuplenye, redemption, means vosstanovlenye i obnovlenye togo, chto bilo pokhisheno, to restore and renew what has been stolen. Most people squeeze their eyes shut and pretend the Devil doesn't exist. ... They live their lives as if there were no problems in the world, no hunger, no orphans, no child sex slaves. They don't do what God calls every single one of us to do, to redeem mankind. ... [This is] about you establishing the kingdom of God in a significant way by finding freedom for the captives. All of this is the beginning of a new life for you.'"
- Priceless, Tom Davis, Chapter 36This was a very good read. [Plus, it was free - yay for free ebooks! ;)]
So, it's becoming a well-known stat - there are 27 million slaves in the world.
Priceless takes us on an educational, spiritual, emotional and page-turning journey through that sickening reality.
In Priceless, we journey with Stuart, a photojournalist, who's in Russia to document the rise of HIV/AIDS in the nation. However, through an old friend, he soon finds himself in the middle of an operation working to free trafficked sex slaves.
Throughout the [fictional] story, readers learn about the grim reality of human trafficking and the sex trade. Yeah, you might have heard a bunch of stats before, but this book pulls you right into the brothels, streets and sickening circumstances. [For this reason, I'll say now that this book is definitely PG13 - there are a few gruesome/graphic scenes.]
I also learned a lot about how people are pulling these girls out of captivity and into freedom. While readers learn of the deep darkness of sex slavery, we also learn of heroes who are trailblazers for freedom. Tom Davis does a fantastic job of educating readers on many of the aspects of rescuing sex slaves, without getting too boring or technical.
Priceless recognizes that we are fighting for hearts and we're fighting against a real live evil. An evil that grips lives and causes hearts to turn to evil things. An evil that reigns all too often.
Priceless reminds us that "'it's God who will ensure [our] success in this matter.'" [Chapter 37]
And what must we do? "'We give ourselves, in spite of what we might prefer and in spite of fear. ... None of us is good, but God's salvation is perfect. He can do good through people who allow for it.'" [Chapter 36]
As we journey with Stuart, we are also pulled into the gripping story of Marina, a girl who is chained into sex slavery, as well as the stories of countless girls much like her.
Their stories pull you into feeling just a tiny sliver of what a sex slave might feel on a daily basis.
The torture. The darkness, the evil. The utter hopelessness.
Their stories rip your heart out. Because it's not fair. None of it is fair.
"'Why does God allow it?' I say this almost under my breath. It's my greatest struggle." [Chapter 36]Yes. Why? How? Yet there's this -
"I cannot trust life, but I can trust the One who created it." [Chapter 39]Yes. That. He has overcome the world.
I'd recommend Priceless 100 times over. You learn. You cry. And you cling to the only hope - Jesus.
Last thing - this book will disturb you. You'll be angered. Discomforted. Wrecked. Fair warning, ok? ;)
Grab Priceless here [US] or here [Canada].
Would you fight for freedom? Check out International Justice Mission.