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Cultivate Justice

Cultivate Justice


Isaiah 1:17

“Seek Justice.

Help the Oppressed.

Defend the cause of Orphans.

Fight for the rights of Widows.”


I read these verses, like many others and think to myself, “yes, I should do those things. Those things are important.” But in the comfort and convenience of my life, how important are they really? What is interesting about these verses is that earlier in the chapter, God is rebuking Israel because of their religious acts that are void of any real meaning. They are basically going through the motions and God is tired of it. They are doing and saying all of the right things, but those things are empty, easy and not at all what God really desires.

It doesn’t take long to realize that in many ways the American church of today resembles many of these same characteristics. We know how to put on a rockin’ concert, conference or worship service. We know how to use social media to promote the “next best thing” coming out in our Christian sub-culture. We know how to tweet verses and sermon highlights. Actually we KNOW a lot.


A few years ago, God started doing some unraveling in me and His question to me was simply this:
“Melody, what are YOU doing with what YOU know?”


I began a personally painful journey that revealed to me that I was basically a Consumer in the Kingdom of God but not much of a Contributor. Anyone could look at my life and conclude that I talked about Jesus a whole lot but most my life revealed that I didn’t care too much about the things nearest and dearest to His heart.

A closer look at the life and ministry of Jesus reveals a Man who spent his time with the marginalized, the least popular, the poorest and the most forgotten. Those were the people He saw, gravitated to, healed and spent time with. When it came to the religious leaders, the ones who should have been modeling what “true religion” looks like…well, he had words for them too but they weren’t very warm and fuzzy.

What I am convinced of is that to truly love Jesus is to love the things He loved and to do the things He did. This can be uncomfortable, inconvenient and messy. It means standing up for things, fighting for people, giving to organizations and being on the front lines of causes that REALLY matter. Because here is the deal: If we won’t then who will?

This is why I care about Dressember. This is why I believe in its mission – because as the Church awakens to the horrific truth of human trafficking and rises up to fight for the millions of women and children who are enslaved, WE become the voice, the hands and the feet of Jesus. We become His ambassadors.

Dressember for me is about coming together as a community of women around the world who are saying to our sisters in bondage: WE SEE YOU. WE ARE FIGHTING FOR YOU. With every dollar Dressember raises, another woman and child move towards freedom. Every day organizations like A21 and International Justice Mission are rescuing and rehabilitating our sisters AND prosecuting the ones who enslaved them. This is the work of redemption. This is the work of justice.


This is the work of Jesus.


And I am a Jesus follower so it must be my work as well.


-Melody Workman


Cultivate Justice


Do you remember the longest night you’ve ever had? A night when you are the only one awake and it seems like everyone in your home is having the sweetest of dreams while you’re tortured by your thoughts and restlessness. You look at the clock and the time is nowhere near day break. Its dark, its lonely, and it seems like the sun will never come up.

 I have those nights often. And often, God tells me to stay up and pray. On the nights that I actually obey God’s nudging, I will roll off my bed to my knees. As I pray, God shows me the faces of children sitting underground with their faces partially lit and partially shadowed as if they are underground, and there is a grate of metal bars placed above them like a lid and the light partly shines on them as they sit in darkness.

 There are millions of children, women, and even men too living in the dark places under the oppression of an abusive trafficker. Their nights are long and torturous in the worst possible way.  Their days are filled with work, fear and dehumanizing abuse. There is no going back to sleep after a nightmare. There is no light of day for them.

 It is paralyzing to think about what I can do to help them as I am only one seemingly powerless person, but I kneel before a power-full God… and pray! I pray, and I beg God to have mercy on His children. I pray for rescuing hands to save those souls from their oppressor. And, I pray that God continue to wake me up in the middle of the night to pray.

 I alone can’t do anything, but together, with other women, WE can bring the light of day to the oppressed children of God. Let’s pray fervently and let’s give sacrificially to those organizations involved in rescuing slaves. This is why I’m participating in Dressember and asking you to do so also… because the people in charge of Dressember are working directly with organizations like the A21 and the International Justice Mission who are on the ground, doing the work, knowledgeable in how to make the changes and bring the justice that helps free these children, women, and men out of the darkness. And in the meantime… we pray that the light of day, through Jesus Christ, might be theirs too.

“People sitting out their lives in the dark saw a huge light; Sitting in that dark, dark country of death, they watched the sun come up.” (Matthew 4:16; Isaiah 9:1-2) MSG

~Noemi H-Alexander

Cultivate Justice


Initially when I was asked to be the lead for the Cultivate Dressember campaign I felt so honored. To say that I am passionate about this topic would be an understatement, but as I began digging into statistics, watching documentaries, listening to testimonies, and really immersing myself in all things human trafficking I could feel an internal friction take place. Suddenly that initial feeling of honor became entangled with odd familiarities and a strange resistance. Learning the truth about a lot of this is hard enough, but watching videos that trigger your own personal memories takes it to a whole other level. So, as I began preparing for the launch of the campaign, I personally had to sit with God for a while and ask what He wanted me to do with all of this.

I remember being 15 years old and being afraid of the dark, so afraid that I would climb into bed with my little sister at night… I felt safer there with her. I would put myself between her and the wall, and then I would pray for the morning to come. The night time had come to represent everything awful about my new reality. Dark car rides that made me want to die, dark parking lots that I’ll never forget, dark living rooms where I prayed to God to change my life and simultaneously felt like He had completely forgotten about me.

I am a survivor of sexual abuse.

When I sit here, with my story written all over my body,  and I read the accounts of these other women who are being trafficked, beaten, raped, imprisoned, and things that I just cannot comprehend, I find myself broken. You see…I know my own pain from the sexual abuse I’ve experienced. I know all of my stories. I live with my memories, and yet I have to say so much of what I have gone through feels tiny and small and almost unimportant in comparison to the research I was doing. This feels silly to me as I see myself writing it, but is such an accurate description of the wrestling my heart does over this subject. I find myself in this really odd place of feeling disabled to fight for them because my own junk is so heavy, and at the same time being fueled by my pain to never give up on them.

In various seasons in my life, and especially over the last few months, I feel the words of Isaiah 61:1 carved into the cracks of my heart:

“The Spirit of the Sovereign LORD is on me, because the LORD has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners”

I am a woman who has lived in bondage and slavery to the lies that have been spoken over me and the abuse that has been done to me. This is true, this is my story on many levels, but it’s not my whole story… and it will not be the END of my story. I am a daughter of the King, first and foremost, who has been rescued by redemption and grace. I am a woman who, in my darkest seasons~ in my most painful and unflattering moments, has been blessed by the will of those who intentionally choose to fight for ME. My life has been forever changed by the handful of people who entered into my brokenness with me, fought for the freedom of my soul when I was too weak to fight, and advocated for the truth of my worth when I had lost hope. The course of my life is completely altered and forever different than it would have been because of those who were willing to get uncomfortable and messy for the sake of rescuing and redeeming all that was stolen from me.

This verse in Isaiah tells me that, my own abuse aside, as a child of God I am specifically called to not ignore the injustice and slavery that surrounds me. As I think of all the people who have been uncomfortable for my redemption’s sake, I must ask myself “how are those in captivity not worth the same level of discomfort and risk that I received? Are their lives not as important as mine?” Yes, I have had awful things happen to me, but I have also seen God use others as His hands and feet in my life to breathe a new song into me. And what an absolute honor it is to now be in a position where all of my messy can be used by God to breathe hope into other women who are running out of air. Friends, our hearts SHOULD be broken over this, our souls SHOULD be called to action.  Doing nothing is no longer acceptable.

Wearing a dress every day hardly feels like anything unbearable, I get that. Initially I questioned how this would even serve it’s purpose. “Participate? Sure, I’ll participate”, but (to be real) inside a part of me thought “how will this make a difference?” Yes, I understand spreading awareness. Yes, I want to boldly fight for those in slavery, but the dress… what’s with the dress? It felt silly to me. BUT It only took wearing a dress for 3 days until I found myself totally inconvenienced by the fact that my jeans and flannel were off limits, and there it was. “Oh… this is an inconvenience for you? Have you already forgotten?”

We live in a culture that tells us to live for ourselves, to take care of us and our people first, that we “deserve” a comfortable life. But, do you know that the Bible teaches the exact opposite? Comfortable living is not a part of the gospel, nothing about “picking up your cross and dying to yourself” is comfortable; and I personally have found that my most tangible experiences with God have taken place in my greatest moments of discomfort.

Is the actual action of wearing a dress going to be what saves these women and children? No, It’s not… but it’s not meant to. The truth is, at the end of the day,  the only thing that will save these women and children is God. Our wearing a dress is just a small piece of the puzzle. It’s a jagged piece of a picture that’s connected to other irregular pieces building and revealing a much bigger picture as all the pieces start coming together. Wearing the dress is our opportunity to be the hands and feet of Jesus in the lives of these women and children who are suffering in a way that most of us will never understand. It’s our opportunity to speak truth to the lie that God has forgotten them, but rather stand as examples of His unfailing love for them. We aren’t being asked to have it all figured out, and at no point are we expected to solve these awful issues all on our own. All we’re asked to do is be willing… willing to be minimally uncomfortable in an effort to help rescue other women and children from a life of bondage.

Maybe you are like me and you find yourself struggling to sort through your own messy stuff and getting close to a topic like this triggers and hurts, or maybe you find yourself feeling so far from this topic that you question whether you have a right or are intimidated by the thought of getting involved. I hear you, I hear your heart and I want to encourage you to not accept any of those thoughts as truth. All of our stories, no matter how tragic they are or how plain they might seem, serve a mighty purpose in Jesus name. My prayer is that throughout this month we can all gain personal wisdom while spreading awareness, that God would use all of our little bits to bring BIG justice for those enslaved, and that overall His name would be glorified as His daughters stand boldly for those in suffering. Never once did God forsake me, I relish in that truth for myself, and I take action so that it may be the truth of those enslaved. 


Cultivate Dressember campaign Lead

“None of you should be looking out for your own interests, but for the interest of others.”  1 Corinthians 10:24


Cultivate Justice


Dressember. What’s Dressember?

This is what I thought 2 years ago as I was scrolling through my Instagram feed each morning and saw one of the young women in our church posting pictures of her in a dress day after day. FINALLY, after a few days I’m embarrassed to admit (and you know you do it too 😉 ~ like pictures without reading the captions… lol), I took the time to actually read what she was writing. She was talking about this thing she was doing called Dressember. It’s similar to Movember for men which brings awareness and raises money to help prostate cancer. She went on to explain how each day in the month of December she would be wearing a dress to raise awareness about what’s happening in the world in regards to sex trafficking, as well as how people can be a part of helping to eradicate it.  I don’t know about you but for me when it comes to BIG issues like… homelessness, poverty, orphans, and trafficking I feel so small. I feel like ‘what can I do?’. I can’t end it, I can’t even make a dent in it.  I don’t know what I’m doing. I don’t even know where to start. I’m a girl and a wife and a mom just barely making it through the day~  let alone eradicating sex trafficking from the planet. And so…. I do nothing.

I think this is why Dressember stood out to me because here was this ordinary girl like me~ and she WAS doing something about it. She was making it known. She was educating people on the issues. She was informing people on the reality of what was going on. She was a small part of something BIG that was making a difference.  I thought to myself… I can do this!

Fast forward to December 1st 2015… I woke up that morning all butterfly’ee excited to start. I put on my dress, headed to work, had a friend snap my pic, and posted it. I was feeling pretty good (about myself). Day 2, same thing…. Day 3 repeat, Day 4…. UGH~ It’s cold and I hate wearing dresses. Everyone who know’s me knows I’m a holy jeans wearing kind of girl. Like… I wear jeans EVERY DAY. I basically consider myself to be a jeans model. I can make them sporty rolled up with Converse, cutesy paired with cute strappy sandals, hipster’ish in a 42 year old kind of way with ankle boots and a cardigan, and then evening wear with heels and a blousy top. I mean seriously, do we even need anything else in the closet outside of jeans?! I say NO.

I tell you this for two reasons…

  1. Because people were used to seeing me in jeans.
  2. Because NOT wearing jeans actually turned out to be quite difficult for me

As I said… people were used to seeing me in jeans, and sooooo when they’d see me in a dress the first assumption was that something REALLY special must be going on, a wedding, party, funeral maybe. And everyone asked,,, Why the dress? Where are you headed? This surprised me.  I wasn’t prepared for just how often I would have the opportunity to share WHY I was wearing a dress.  I soon realized how little I actually knew about WHY I was wearing a dress. I knew I was going to post super cute pictures of me in a dress each day (insert sarcastic/winky eyed emogi here)… but I wasn’t prepared (aka educated) on exactly WHAT the statistics for trafficking were.  About a week in I found that I needed to really start researching so that I’d actually have something to say to people about why I cared about trafficking when I was trying to tell them about how THEY should care about it. As I did this… the reading and researching and getting educated I found that it was actually ME that I was reaching through being an advocate for Dressember. 2 things that stood out to me the most (not that they are the most important 2 things… just 2 that surprised me and stuck with me) were 1. That girls around the age of 12 were the most highly sought after for trafficking and 2. How ginormous of an issue trafficking is right here in the United States.  Up till then when I thought of trafficking I thought of women in far away third world countries not girls right here in my own backyard.  Literally, Riverside County is considered to be a ‘hot bed’ for trafficking~ even finding the 10 fwy interchange a few minutes away from my church mentioned. This shocked me, until…

Until I met someone who I now consider one of my best friends. A friend who I hang out with on a regular basis.  A friend who stays with my children when Matt & I go out of town. A friend who looks like me, went to a private school growing up like me, named her daughter the same name as I named mine. We are samesies in so many ways. Except… what our days looked like when we each came home from our private schools looked very different. You see my friend was trafficked beginning at the age of 12 right here in the US of A.  I was shocked by this. Shocked and convicted and broken hearted and compelled to care! Care  in a new way because now trafficking wasn’t far away~ it was one of my most favorite people’s real story.  And I realized that everyone trafficked is someone’s real people too. Someone’s sister, daughter, mother, friend. Everyone trafficked is loved deeply and matters to someone somewhere who probably feels helpless like I did. And I wanted to be able to help those people now too. Help them rescue their favorite people.

I’m not kidding you when I tell you that I had multiple opportunities a day to share about Dressember. LIKE multiple. I couldn’t believe that wearing a dress could get this much attention.  It works. This wearing a dress every day is a real thing. As the month went on, the pictures were posted, people were inspired, awareness was spread, and funds were raised… I was feeling pretty good. Except secretly I hated wearing a dress. I had a serious attitude problem. The closet…  it was in my closet that this part of me could be on display.  Out there… it was all smiles and cute posted pictures and I was all in.  But in the closet~ I was grumpy and bitter about wearing a stupid dress.  I’d gripe about it to my husband and kids. I loved talking and sharing about trafficking and Dressember, it was just the wearing the actual dresses that I hated.

But then… one morning, about half way through the month, I felt the Lord speak to my heart. He said…

Wearing this dress is not to bring awareness to everyone else, it’s for YOU. It’s a reminder for you, an alarm clock of sorts, to remember right here quietly in your closet each morning where you’ve been your grumbly worst and no one see’s you~ but I see you . A reminder each morning to remember. Remember them by wearing a dress.  A dress on a day even if it’s cold or windy…it’s still your choice. A dress that maybe you’ve already worn already because you don’t have 31 different dresses… wear it again. A dress that’s meant for summer but it’s winter and it’s the only clean dress you have and there’s worse things going on than having to wear a summery hibiscus flower hawaiian dress in winter. A dress on a day where maybe it’s inconvenient or you’re just not ‘feeling it’. These little things… they’re all luxury frustrations you get to afford.  These girls, the one’s you feel so ‘good’ about advocating for… these would be their dream frustrations.  They don’t get to worry about such things so trivial as this. Their worries look much differently. And isn’t this the whole reason you decided to do this? Wasn’t it  to help them? Wouldn’t it be so wonderful if they could have these issues? If these were their daily struggles?  Instead, they are dealing with much bigger issues. Ones they don’t get to decide for themselves. Ones they have no control over. At least you get to pick the dress. At least you get to decide everyday to keep doing this or not. If only they had the freedom to make that same choice.  Let’s remember this!

This is what Dressember became for ME. A reality check. I became aware. This changed me.  Each morning after that little message from the Lord putting on the dress was MY reminder. Reminder to pray.  My prayers began looking something like this…

Lord, I don’t know these women and children but you do. On my own I can’t make a difference, I can’t change things… but you can. You see them and love them and have just as much of a plan and purpose for their life as you do mine or my own children,  I believe this. Today let me live in a way that shines light into this dark place. You don’t need my (our) money to change things, but as you already know~ our hearts are often so tied to our money, let my money and the money of the people who see why I’m doing Dressember reflect our hearts. Fish and loaves… I ask that you take whatever money is donated and multiply it to begin eradicating the sex trafficking that’s big and scary and almost defeating… almost. BUT thank you for what you’ve already been doing through the organizations already on the ground~ specifically the International Justice Mission and the A21 campaign. Thank you that they are not scared or overwhelmed by the gravity of it all.  Thank you Blyth HIll, the founder of Dressember, and her mustard seed faith that she could make a difference… and now mountains are being moved.  Thank you for making a way for me to actually have a way and an opportunity to make a difference in something that we know is so close to your heart. Today let me be bold in spreading awareness and unafraid to ask people to join by giving. I’ll wear the dress on behalf of all of us. I’ll wear it on cold and windy days. I’ll wear it when I’m not ‘feeling it’. I’ll wear the same dress over and over if I have to. Let me know forget that it’s not about the dress.


Throughout the month many women would tell me they wished they’d done it, OR that they wanted to do it with me if I did it again this year… so here we are! It’s my prayer that everyone who was inspired will join me, and that they’ll inspire a whole new group of people to join. For more information on the Cultivate Women team you can visit our Dressember page on our website, but here’s a quick snapshot of it..

  • Got to
    • Choose ‘join a team’
    • Search ‘Cultivate Women’
    • Create your personal profile page
  • Link your personal profile page in all your social media accounts.
  • Get started…
    • Start wearing a dress
    • Take pics and share to spread awareness and raise funds
    • Tell everyone who asks you ‘what you’re dressed up for?’ WHY you are wearing a dress
  • Pray. Pray everyday for those currently being trafficked
  • Follow along with us.
    • Follow @cultivatewomen on social media for daily updates
    • Read the weekly blog posts
    • Tag us in your posts

I’m so excited about the dozens of women who’ve already joined our team~ and if you haven’t joined yet but want to… it’s not too late. I’m hoping all of the women of Cultivate will participate in one way or another as an act of exceptional kindness AND an opportunity to be about something so much bigger than ourselves.  WHY? because we can, and there’s a lot of us, and our women are truly amazing and generous, and we each have such a unique sphere of influence, and because all of our little bits add up to A LOT.  If you want to be a part and don’t want to wear the dress… I’ll wear it for you! I’m committed to wearing a dress (again;) all 31 days during the month of December. I’ll wear the dress… you can donate. We’ll be a team like that! Together we can be a part of cultivating dignity & justice for all women.

~ Tammy

PS… In the few short years Dressember has been a thing it has raised over a million dollars to help fight human trafficking. This has been done by a bunch of ordinary women just like me!  Each of on our own couldn’t make a dent, but together… together a huge impact is being made! To learn more about Dressember visit,  and I highly recommend watching the founder Blyth Hill’s Tedx Talk.

PSS… Also~ I’ve also personally officially declared January “Jeans January” for all who want to join! 😉

Cultivate Justice


Growing up, unknowingly…  I always waited for someone to save me…No one did.

From the very beginning, my idea of  “normal” was certainly skewed.

My mom was 15 years old when I was born, and I was her second child. There isn’t a lot that I remember from when I was younger, but when I was 5 years old my mom left my brother, my 2 younger sisters, and me with a friend of hers for the weekend and she didn’t come back. Each of us had different fathers and so there was a lot of confusion for us for a long time. We waited and hoped that our mom would come back, but weeks turned into months… that turned into almost 6 years.  Life without my mom was my new normal.

I was 11 years old when my mom returned and my new new normal was about to unfold. I turned 12 shortly after my mom’s return, and on a day that should have been filled with my friends, games, and cake and ice cream ended up being a party filled with alcohol and all of my mom’s friends. That evening while “my” birthday party was still in full swing I ended up going to my room.  My mom came up to let me know that some of her guy friends downstairs thought I was cute and that she was going to send them up. I had know idea what that meant or what was about to take place, but what I did know was that I needed to keep doing whatever my mom wanted me to so she wouldn’t leave again. That night six different men came into my room and had sex with me. I was filled with so much fear and confusion, but this was quickly drowned out by complete numbness.

At 13 I met the guy that was soon to become my boyfriend and my daughter’s father. My mom introduced us at one of her parties and in my young teenage mind there was a connection between us. Little did I know that this relationship would turn out to be a continuation of the abuse, only this time HE was getting paid for the services that I was performing. By the time he took over, the sex was a daily occurrence.  I had my daughter at 16…  but that didn’t stop the constant flow of men every night.  Each day I would get up and go to school like every other teenage girl my age, only to come home and be this other person I had grown accustomed to being.  Most of the time my days didn’t end until 2…sometimes 3 in the morning~ just to wake up a couple of hours later to do it all again. Perhaps the most surprising thing about my life was that to an outsider looking in you would never know that there was anything different or wrong going on in my family. We had nice things, nice clothes, nice vehicles. We lived in a nice house in a nice neighborhood, we even had a maid. I went to a nice private school, and I was even on the varsity softball team.


This was my life for the next 15+ years!  This lifestyle followed me from middle school into high school, throughout having babies, and even during my time in the military. I’d become accustomed to living the life of a modern day slave quite perfectly.  And when I didn’t get it perfect, I was corrected in a manner that taught me that I never wanted to make whatever same mistake again. I became afraid, afraid of everything! Afraid of making the wrong decision, afraid of looking people in the eye, afraid of failing, afraid of people walking away, afraid of life in general.  However, this was my life.  Even after my “boyfriend” went to prison for his actions, and my mom was now out of the picture due to her suicide, this lifestyle continued on.  You see, I’d gotten to the point where the sex with men for money was a game to me now, a payback of sorts. Even after the people who’d forced this lifestyle onto me were out of the picture it was still very much a part of who I was, it was all I knew… it was normal to me.

In 2007ish, about a year before my mom’s death, I was watching a program on MSNBC that was highlighting a ministry for women in the sex industry.  When I saw this show I thought these girls might be able to help my mom. At the time I honestly believed that SHE was the one that needed the helping, the saving. And so…I reached out to the network and they connected me with the women running this ministry. They were from a church I’d never heard of called Sandals, in a town over a thousand miles away on the other side of the country. Through a crazy series of events that happened after that connection~ God allowed my path to collide with the person who He would, unbeknownst to me, use as the person who would step in and start His process of saving ME. Her name was Lori Albee.  We kept in touch long distance, and she began the process of walking through life with me. After my mom’s death, as well as a few other life happenings, I felt like I was losing my mind. I knew now that MY life needed a drastic change, but I had no idea where to begin. I was exhausted physically and emotionally. Lori began researching places for me to go and get the help that I needed~ only to come up empty handed with every search.  There was nothing out there for girls in my situation. Yes, there were organizations that raised awareness, but that’s where it ended. After countless searches and  phone calls coming up empty every time, Lori and her husband Matt, after much prayer and guidance, invited me to leave everything that my life consisted of and move out to California to live with them and their family and start over.

In 2012 I moved out to California with only the possessions that would fit in my car. It’s been  an eye-opening experience to say the least, and if I’m being honest~ I wanted to give up a countless number of times, especially in the beginning.  It’s been overwhelming to realize that my normal wasn’t “normal” at all, and that I honestly didn’t know what a healthy “normal”  lifestyle looked like~ let alone how to live one. I’ve  had to learn things that many people take for granted on a daily basis. Things like doing laundry, and cooking (seriously boiling a pot of water was nerve wracking for me). I even had to learn how to ride a bike. These things were challenging, but I think one of the most challenging parts has been to learn that when people hug me or tell me they love me it’s because they genuinely care about me.  THIS was not normal for me.  Also, crying! I’m learning that crying isn’t a bad thing or a sign of weakness.  In this area of me so many of my walls are still up… But I’m happy to be able to share that they are slowly coming down. I’m also learning about grieving. Grieving the childhood and family I didn’t have, and grieving for the one that I did.  And when the time comes when I am totally able to grieve my situation I am starting to believe what everyone around me has been telling me… and that’s that the tears won’t last forever.

Over the past couple of years there have been many things that I have been unsure of, but the one thing that I have learned that I can absolutely be sure of is that I can  hold onto the promise that God will never leave me or forsake me. At times I may be barely hanging on, but I know that I have made it to far to let go now. The mask is off.  The secrets are out. And I am learning to step into the light,  and as the dark shadows of the past disappear… I am finding that the little girl I thought no one loved has been loved after all. I am starting to believe that my worth is not determined by or based on my past. God cherished me from the start and He continues to do so now…. even after and despite all that I’ve done and been through. I am beginning to realize that there’s nothing I have done or could ever do to make God love me anymore or any less. To be loved is the greatest feeling one could ever feel.

The Dressember movement with Cultivate is something I am passionate about being a part of because we are taking a stance on the injustice that is happening all over the world.  Injustice not just happening far away in third world countries, but right here in our own backyards.  I am proof of this. We must go from apathy to action. This is what Lori did for me. We have to fight for those who are unable to fight for themselves.  We have to be a voice for those who haven’t found theirs yet. We have to be the ones to move for those paralyzed by fear. We need to let the young girls and women in situations similar to mine know that we see them, that they are loved, that they are not forgotten, and that their worth is so much greater than the label they have been given. We can no longer stay silent with the information we have acquired.  We need to shine light into this dark place of human trafficking.