It started as a simple question: “What are people your age passionate about?”
I paused. It was a good question, but one that I didn’t have an answer for.
“Football?” I joked.
As football season is in full swing, some 20 million people are glued to the TV watching their favorite teams on any given week. The yelling, the screaming, the happiness, and the celebration of our favorite teams can all be described in one word: passion.
When I think about the passions of people around me, I think of sports. I think of pursuing the American dream. I think of holiday shopping, wedding planning, online dating. I think of things, not people.
Passion isn’t just something you feel. Your passions are part of you and the things you care about. Few would answer the question, “what are you passionate about?” with “football.” We all want to have a deeper meaning to our lives. We want to have a purpose to our passions. But would others recognize what you are passionate about? What things or people are worthy of passion? What does passion mean anyway? Let’s go way back to the twelfth century, where the word passion was birthed.
The word passion holds a deep meaning and one that I think we’ve lost connection to. Upon doing a quick Google search of the word, you’ll find the word passion was first used to describe “the suffering, the hurt, and the enduring pain” people experienced when they died for a cause they believed in. Few things in life are more powerful than loss of life. We know the sting of death and loss all too well. The word passion was created to describe “our strongest emotions and desires.”
While we can relate to the disappointment and celebration of sports, I’d like to challenge us. I’d like our passions to go deeper. You may choose to be passionate about football, Starbucks, your latest shopping spree, etc.… But I know few people who would suffer, hurt, or endure pain for anything on that list.
What if, at the end of the day, we were only passionate about people? What if we endured suffering and hurt with others? What if we reserved our strongest emotions and desires for people, not things?
Football is a great pastime, a great sport, but it’s not worthy of our strongest passion.
What if we weren’t just aware of child trafficking and exploitation? What if we were passionate about ending it?
What does it look like to endure and walk alongside the suffering of children who’ve been sexually abused?
It looks a lot like Love146.
Love146 works internationally in Asia, Europe, and North America to not only care for survivors of child trafficking but also to prevent trafficking from even occurring in the first place.
Our passion can be found in the schools of Houston equipping youth to recognize recruitment tactics, understand vulnerabilities, and develop skills to safely navigate potential and existing exploitative situations.
Our passion can be seen in the U.K. as we train foster families to care and house trafficked youth and provide resources to youth who need a safe place to stay.
Our passion is evident in the way we care for boys and girls who have been trafficked in the Philippines as we partner with them for the long-haul, love them with an everlasting love and provide a safe place where children can be children.
Love146 endures, suffers, and hurts alongside the kids we work with. We never “close a case.” We never say, “your suffering is too much.” We lean in; we seek those who are in need; we love, passionately.
Passion isn’t easy. We cry, we sweat, we endure, we hope, we overcome, but at the end of the day, we love–it’s in our name.
Love146 is passionate about ending child trafficking and exploitation, and we hope you are too.
We are all capable of finding a purpose for our passion. Now it’s time to find yours.