Monday, August 25, 2008

Taking Strategic Risks for God's Kingdom


How tolerant of risk are you? Everyone has a different tolerance and this is key to your success in innovation. Innovators learn to tolerate risk if they believe the reward is great enough. Think about some of the great missions innovators and how risky their lives seem today.


The thing that helps us take risk is the great reward that we strive for. We are working for something much larger than money or fame. Our innovations are designed to have eternal impact for God's Kingdom. Within that context, God challenges us to take greater risk and to trust in Him.


I would like to introduce you to an innovator and risk taker in our facebook group - Dawn Herzog Jewell. Dawn works for MAI and has just written a book called Escaping the Devil's Bedroom. This book is a daring look at the realities of the sex trade world wide and what Christians are doing to reach out to people caught in this reality.


Dawn doesn't have any experience in this area, but she felt that God wanted her to write about something that wasn't getting much ink - and through prayer - God led her to this topic. As a new author, imagine the intimidation of tackling a topic like this? Would you have done it?


But Dawn found a prayer partner to walk alongside her and she began tackling the subject. After much travel, research and interaction with those who work in this area of ministry - the book is finally out.


As I read the first chapter, what I found so amazing is that Dawn helped me to see those people caught in the sex trade as individuals in desperate need of love. It was so easy before for me to see them as objects, but Dawn introduces me to people who were broken and have now been made whole in Christ.
One of the innovative elements is how Dawn carries the theme of lost and found people throughout the book. So many books focus on the sin and forget the person. Dawn turned that equation around and made it about those people who are caught in the middle of their sin and their circumstances. Even when the people in the book are hard to love, Dawn challenges the reader to see them as Jesus does.


Dawn has tackled a subject that few would cover. She has dealt with the topic in a straightforward way that shows the sin but then focuses on the solution. In all that she had friends and co-workers praying for her and her work.


I believe that Dawn's risk is going to pay off in exciting ways as people around the world get to know what ministry is going on to free people from the sex trade and how they can get involved.


What risks is God asking you to take today? Will you be courageous enough to engage in God's agenda?


Make sure to visit the blog: http://www.escapingthedevilsbedroom.com/

Also, make sure to join the facebook group for the book: http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=26436580582

2 comments:

Ty Stakes said...

Wow...

I am challenged by her desire to say, "God, what do you want me to do?" and then boldly forging ahead after receiving the answer. And an unexpected, difficult but thrilling answer at that!

God is asking me, "How much of your efforts are spent without asking for My direction or listening for answers? Answers that are way outside the proverbial box; answers that come from My heart?"

Wow...

Erik said...

I have not yet read Dawn's book, but hope to soon. I appreciate her work on the subject though as most people in our society--as well as most ministries I believe look the other way when any issues of sex come up, let alone matters of prostitution and the sex industry.

To tackle such a raw, painful and prevalent epidemic is very courageous and I applaud Dawn's efforts in bringing not only the trade out into the light but the fact that these are all God's children, many who are trapped in the cycle. What I am equally interested in, and which may also be covered in the book, is an honest look at the demand-side of the equation which fuels the sex trade industry, namely sex and love addiction.

There have been some attempts to accurately portray many who elicit sex (be it through prostitution or pornography) as being afflicted with sex addiction, but I think far too often its done with a nudge and a wink, or with a loathing disgust for anyone who would be involved in the demand-side rather than treating them with the love and compassion that so many of us preach but do not practice in real-world issues.

The vastness of the problem and the pain and hopelessness that many of these people deal with is largely misunderstood. Its a very real and vicious cycle that affects every demographic of man, woman and child in the world (in and out of the church), and one which needs to be addressed openly, honestly and with love and compassion.