Dressember /\/\ Dressing up to address Human Trafficking /\/\

So over the past couple months I’ve been using clothes from my capsule wardrobe. It was ok. I liked the minimal selection, but then I found myself wanting what I put away. I did pair things that I hadn’t before, so that was a bonus. My capsule ends on December 1st, so I’ve been finding myself wondering what I’m going to do next.

A couple weeks ago my dear friend Hannah sent me a text with a link attached and asked if I had ever heard of “Dressember”. Being a dress lover, I was highly intrigued and headed over to see what it was all about. I was overjoyed when I read about their mission (from the Dressember “About” page…because they word it so well, you might as well just read their words, not mine!): “Dressember is a collaborative movement leveraging fashion and creativity to restore dignity to all women. Dressember uses fashion to advocate for women who’ve been exploited for their femininity. As women take on the creative challenge of wearing a dress for the 31 days of December, they are advocating for the inherent dignity of all women.” I.love.this. It shows we can all do something to shed light on the global issue of human trafficking. I love wearing dresses, this is something I can do. This is something you can do…we can give a voice to the voiceless. Goodbye capsule wardrobe…hello Dressember!!

dressember4While human trafficking has been a widely discussed issue for a few years now, I still find I run into people occasionally who just don’t have any idea about how far reaching the problem has become. They think prostitutes choose that kind of lifestyle. They believe slavery was a problem during the civil war, but not anymore. They believe it only happens in developing countries and only the “really bad guys” pay to have sexual contact with children. They think there is nothing they can do short of moving overseas to work with those who have been sexually exploited. If you find yourself nodding in agreement with those beliefs, I strongly encourage you to do some research…I’ll even help you. Here are some links to trusted sources with information about human trafficking, why there is a demand for sexually exploiting women & children, and where it’s happening:

International Justice Mission

Agape International Missions

Shared Hope International

LOVE146

REST (I also recommend reading this post about Porn)

SOLD: The Human-Trafficking Experience
I also created a Pinterest board with various links, infographics, etc about Human Trafficking. Read, discuss, tweet, share posts about human trafficking.

dressember3Back to the dresses and why I’m doing this. Because I’m a list lover, here’s 5 reasons why I’m participating in Dressember:

1. Because Jesus tells me to. He rescued me from sin and the penalty of eternal separation from Him when He died on the cross. I claim Him as my Lord and Savior. He is my hope and my salvation. He hung out with the poor, the disadvantaged, the prostitutes, the sinners. Because I have decided to follow Him, He tells me to join Him in caring for “the least of these” (Matthew 25:31-46). And when we who love Jesus cares for, rescue, give a voice to those who are poor & hurting, we are really serving Jesus. What an honor to serve Him and see hearts won over to His love and grace.

2. I can do something. I’m a 29 year old SAHM. Often I don’t feel like I can physically get down in the trenches of the human trafficking issue and do face to face battle with it. But I have dresses. I have social media accounts. I have a blog. Those may be small things, but they are things I feel the Lord wants me to use to be a voice for the vulnerable and disadvantaged. One day I may be able to look into the faces of those affected by this evil and pray with them, help them…physically be there. But for now, I can do this.

3. To raise awareness. Like I said before, I still run into people who just don’t know how far reaching human trafficking has become. Being a “church girl” all my life, I know that when sin stays in the dark secret places, it seems to grow and have more power. God created sex, and it is good! But the enemy twists His perfect creation into something deplorable. God created work, and it is good! But the enemy twists work into something we don’t find fulfilling, find too fulfilling, or worse…causes greed for more and those in charge then exploit people in need for cheap labor and often abuse their workers. I believe that if those facts stay in the dark and we turn a blind eye, it will grow and grow. If we shed light on the issues, talk about it, pray about it, and address the problems head on, it loses power. When someone compliements my dress during Dressember, I want to respond with “Thank you! I’m wearing a dress everyday this month as a way to advocate for the dignity of women all over the world who are being exploited.” I’m thinking that response will perk up some ears and hopefully cause some discussion! I know Dressember raises money for IJM, and that is great. But I have to admit, raising money for them is kind of a side-note for me. If I don’t meet my goal of $100 but if I get someone to pray, think, discuss, and DO something…I call that a success.

4. To connect with others. There is a vast network on the internet and social media of like-minded women (and men!) who want to end human trafficking. I want to link arms with them, brainstorm with them, pray with them, do ministry with them and ultimately do battle against evil with them. I am praying for God’s Kingdom come on this earth. I know there are many out there who pray that prayer with me…I want to meet you! Find me on Twitter, IG, Facebook, Pinterest, comment on this blog…whatever!! Let’s connect!

5. Because I love dresses. Always have. Always will. This is a challenge I can get behind. I do need to stock up on some fleece leggings however…brrrr!!!

dressember2If you would like to donate to my goal please visit my Dressember page here. If you can’t donate, no pressure whatsoever. But please please please share something in regards to bringing awareness to human trafficking. And pray. Pray for those needing rescue. Pray for those in the trenches ministering to the victims, pimps, and johns. Pray for His leading on what your part should be.

I will be doing occasional posts about my outfits throughout December…oops Dressember, so please follow along! And if you are participating in the challenge yourself, please let me know so I can follow you too!

Join us, and dress up to address human trafficking.

Press on!

Jaimi S.

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