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Lantern Rescue - How God Moves

Lantern Rescue / Lantern Rescue
The Truth Network Radio
October 3, 2020 10:00 am

Lantern Rescue - How God Moves

Lantern Rescue / Lantern Rescue

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October 3, 2020 10:00 am

The Lantern Team comes to listeners from out-of-country, sharing how the rest of their mission on Caribbean "Island A" panned out ... training, a third-world traffic jam, rising tensions, the nightclub environment, rescues, building relationships, prayer, and how they saw God moving through it all.

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This is Rodney from the Masculine Journey Podcast, where we explored manhood within Jesus Christ. Your chosen Truth Network Podcast is starting in just a few seconds. Sit back, enjoy it, share it, but most of all, thank you for listening and choosing the Truth Podcast Network.

This is the Truth Network. Previously on Lantern Rescue… When you're in that mode, you're kind of just looking, I need to get out of here and move on. I happened to look to my left and I saw the girl that was brought in right behind us. We were able to extract her out and get her out of that club and take her back to the barracks where she could be evaluated and stuff. But our street team, which Mark was leading that night, he had saw this all transpire with the team going in and the girl being drug in there by her after we had entered.

He was like, Oh my, I hope they get that girl. Sure enough, that was the one that God wanted us to get that night. That was the one victim that God wanted us to pull out for all those efforts we put in.

And really that made it worth it for all of us to realize that God had a specific person that He wanted us to rescue that day. Welcome to Lantern Rescue, a ministry program dedicated to bringing light into the darkness of human trafficking. It's time to light the way to freedom. This is Lantern Rescue. We tell the stories, we talk about rescues, and we empower you to do something about it.

William Wilberforce once said, let it not be said I was silent when they needed me. This is Lantern Rescue. Today on Lantern Rescue, I am so excited personally to find out as we continue to sort of unpack what happened on this latest mission. And we were talking about is in this, we're calling it Island A in the Caribbean and this latest operation that has been going on there. We talked a great deal about what happened on the first day, but now we're going to kind of pick up the story, right, Mark?

Yes, sir. You know, I wish our listeners could step in and see exactly how God's worked. And so we're going to try to describe that for everyone. We're so thankful. The second night required that we regroup. And as we mentioned in the last episode, you know, we wanted to humble ourselves, we wanted to maintain this relationship with these guys.

We know that fear is part of the primary problem that's driving some of the dysfunction and the team why we weren't able to go into that gang area the first night. And obviously, God worked it out that we went to another area and were able to rescue nine miners, but we still had that operation in front of us. We still wanted to go into that area. And so, Alan, you can kind of share with listeners what happened and conspired that changed everything.

Sure. Like I mentioned before, that first operation, we all realized that things have been compromised and for whatever reasons, I'm sure there was many of them why it was compromised, but we were pretty disheartened by that two steps forward and three steps back. But the following day, one of our teammates actually has been in and out of that country for close to 11 years. He had some contacts there. We wound up calling one of these contacts who happens to be a general, we won't put out his name, but he was basically second in command of all the police forces over there. So our teammates friends with this guy and he arranges this guy to meet with us the next day after that kind of went south. So the general said he would come to the police precinct with us that night and basically reassure the unit we were with that they could count on us and they could have confidence in us to ensure not only our own safety, but their safety and the effectiveness of the operation, how we could steer them in the right direction. So when we arrived at the barracks that night, the general showed up and nobody from the police precinct knew he was coming, but they all know him because he's again like the second in command of all the law enforcement agencies in that area. So he came to us first and gave us a hug and shook our hands. Then the commander of the unit that we're operating with, he saw that and was like, oh my. So then him and the general and the commander kind of went off to the side and they had a little heart-to-heart, I guess, and he gave him some courage and in our abilities.

The briefing went exactly how we wanted it to go from that point on. The operation went from being a, in lack of a better terms, a cluster to smooth flow. With that said though, there were still obstacles that God put in the way and the first one we encountered was a traffic jam caused by an abundance of water, rainfall, and all that Mark trying to describe how that kind of delayed us a little bit in the operation. Yeah, I mean, in describing this traffic jam, if you've been on I-95 going into let's say, you know, Washington, D.C., that's child's play.

That's just little traffic compared to a traffic jam in a third world country where the only road that runs from the Capitol to the rest of the country is, it's just one road. And so everybody is on that road and, you know, things have went so well. The briefing has gone excellent.

The team is in play. They have got courage underneath them. They've got a general who's, you know, present who's like, God, this can be done.

You can do it. You know, we head out. The convoy goes out and sure enough, 30 minutes later, we're in a deadlocked traffic jam of almost six lanes. And the traffic jams, they are notorious, meaning they're not going to be an hour or two.

They are potentially going to be eight, nine hours long that you're going to sit there. And so, you know, it's 10, 11 o'clock at night. Our operations occur in the night. And I'm now thinking, well, we've made progress, but now we're taking those two steps back, you know, as we discussed, three steps forward, two steps back because we're stopped. We're not going anywhere.

And what are we going to do? This is a description of the general and why he's the general. I'm sitting in this vehicle and I see this man go by in his body armor and looking like he is in complete command. And it was the general. He was going to fix his country's traffic jam.

This is why this guy is where he's at. And behind him were part of my team and then part of the local team. And probably, I don't know if we can fully describe it, TC, you guys went forward. We had comms, so we were able to work together. You can, in humor and in thank goodness to God that's happened, you can kind of describe what happened.

Absolutely. We saw the general walk by and we're like, that's it, we're out of here. So Alan and I popped up and started heading into the traffic jam. And as Marcus said, it was at least six lanes wide. And one of the cool things about this country is there are no traffic rules.

So if you want to turn left in front of three lanes of traffic, go ahead. And that's about what happened. Between those rules and the water, there was no progress being made. We actually ended up sitting, it was just prior to 2300 hours local time that we were actually in front of one of our targets for the evening. So it wasn't a great area. And we had also, we have made fun of ourselves for our, you know, the comms sometimes.

We know they're there somewhere, but we don't always use them. Well, in this particular case, between the general and several of the other team members, we got one lane of traffic moving, but it was on the opposite side of where the convoy was. So with comms and a lot of arm waving and things like that, we were able to get one lane of traffic moving. Mark was able to get four lanes of traffic stopped to get the convoy to cross all of the traffic to get them into that lane. And we were able to eventually get to our rally point to start to work. It was a great team effort and it was kind of funny and it was effective. Yeah, I'm picturing General Patton in the movie.

That's exactly what Mark thought he was, General Patton. Yeah, I agree. That's a good picture. So what, where'd you go from there? Well, I tell you, to think this is not going to be possible and then it becomes possible. And the whole team, the local team, our team, the general, we all work to make this happen because honestly, when they went forward, they went about almost a click ahead of me, a mile ahead of me. Then TC came over and said, Hey, you've got to move all the way to the right. And I look over it.

I've got two there. And they're actually the females of the team that help, you know, take the girls and identify, and then you kind of work with them. I thought, Oh no, I don't know if we can actually stop all this traffic, but you know what? We were able to, and we got all the way across and boy, when we finally got to that, that far right lane in the convoy is now moving. I always think, you know, look, the devil throws things our way to see if we'll just stop and turn around and, and, and not do the job. But then we always push forward. We always have success and we're a team that definitely always pushes forward.

Like we just, until the last minute, the last breath, I think we're always going to keep trying to do what we're called to do. And in this particular situation, we were able to pick up the judge. We're able to meet at the vehicle rally point that in the briefing Allen had placed for us, which was critical because of the traffic, because of the environment, we needed that rally point where we could all come together. And from there, we moved to the first club that was identified and made a great exit from the vehicles.

Like Allen said, I was running the street team there. So part of our job is the street team is quickly identify minors that are at the door on the street. They're about to be taken in. And then if there's none present, then we basically secure the door.

There were none present on the street at that club. So our job became to secure the door area. And, you know, when Allen and TCU lead the alpha and Bravo team, when they make entry, something funny happens, Robbie, uh, when they see a giant white guy, the door, as soon as everybody can, they try to get out that door, you know, you know, so what I saw in the, I want them to describe more of what they saw interior wise of these particular clubs.

And then even about the rescue of the girl. So, uh, you know, what I see are people going, Oh my goodness, and trying to exit the facility as fast as they can. So we clear rooms quite, quite efficiently.

So TC, what did you see? Well, in this particular club, in one of the other clubs, as, as Ren has alluded to, there are minors in these places and there are, there are sex rooms. There's no other way to say it. There's sex rooms in the back. There's no other way to sex rooms in the back.

And so we have as a technique, as a training point, we have tried to get the alpha and Bravo teams to the back of the building as soon as possible so that we can stop any victimization that might be taken place. Um, so this first club, I don't recall it to this first club and Alan can correct me on this. I don't remember the rooms in this particular one. I know in the, uh, in the third club, that was definitely the case. So what do you think?

Do you remember the layout of this particular stuff? Um, they all kind of blur together. I'm going to be honest with you.

I will say this. All the clubs are extremely loud, extremely crowded. Most of them have multiple floors and then they all have some type of back area. Uh, and the one club that we made entry into, like Margaret said, the victims in this second night, there wasn't many because there was only one to be perfectly honest, but that was probably because they were still on alert from the night previously, knowing that we're going to be there.

But, uh, we were clearing the club and it wound up that alpha team and Bravo team, my team and TC's team wound up linking up towards the back of this one club. And we're making entries into these bedrooms that for lack of a better term, most of them were empty until we got to the last one. And then there was a guy and a girl in that one and just, they're not normal rooms. So when you push in on a door to make entry, sometimes that door only opens six to eight inches because there's something blocking it, whether it's the bed or whatever. And in this case, CC was in front of me and I was his number two coming in behind him and the door only opened about eight, 10 inches. And there was a gentleman and he was obviously a older gentleman, not old, old, but probably 25 to 30 in that area. But we could not see the individual he was with who happened to be on that bed. So we actually had to wind up taking about a half a step back and let one of the local team members try to get into that area.

And then we were able to identify the individuals, both individuals, and they were actually both of age. So then we backed out of that area and came out. And I'm not a hundred percent sure, but that may have been the club that we're clearing back out. That was when we identified that one victim that was brought in behind the teams by our team.

Is that the right club there, Mark? Well, I hate to jump in here, but we've got to go to a break and you can tell we've got a lot more action to cover on this particular operation in country. Then we'll be right back with so much more, Lantern Rescue. Lantern Rescue is a USA based organization that conducts international rescue operations for people suffering from human trafficking. Lantern specializes in sending former US special operation, law enforcement and intelligence personnel to partner with host nations and assist them in creating specialized units to combat ongoing security problems, such as genocide, terrorism, and human trafficking.

As a nonprofit charity, they offer services free of charge to their host nations. Human trafficking has grown into the second largest criminal activity in the world, reaching an estimated $150 billion in annual activity. Lantern Rescue has developed rapidly to combat trafficking. Lantern operates through a trained international network in order to rescue women and children from sex and labor slavery, and facilitates holistic aftercare services. They're gearing up for operations right now and you can go to lanternrescue.org to see how you can support them financially. Welcome back to Lantern Rescue today.

We are in country and hearing what God did. These rescues that were taking place in this Caribbean country, we call it Island A. And you guys were in this club, but Mark getting out isn't always as easy as getting in. Yeah, that's true. With cost protection, we don't take it for granted because what happens while we raid a facility, sometimes the attitude of the buyers and the customers there, it escalates. And we also have to maintain protection. And so we have to often frisk and check people for weapons who are pushing themselves into the facility when we're trying to restrict the doorway from people entering and exiting, unless it's a team member. And then what happens is you get people piled up on the street and they just don't want, young girls is the business, and so they don't want them taken away.

I don't know how else to explain it except they do not want us to remove the victims and they would not be there except for these victims and these young girls that they want to abuse and misuse. And so thankfully that night, the night that we're describing, thankfully we did rescue one girl. Thankfully we did and were able to move her out. We had to move her past someone.

We were actually, I was actually watching the video this morning, we actually had to move her past someone that had a weapon that we were apprehending and holding back so that the team could move her out. And we moved to the vehicles and thankfully we were able to make our way back. But again, like we said, there's always steps forward and steps back in these countries and the way that we have to work.

That night, I feel like after the rescue, everything went well and the briefing went well, we had the traffic problem, but the rescues and the raids and operations went really well and we were able to take this girl back to safety. However, that doesn't mean the trip that we didn't continue to have some issues and maybe TC or Alan have one in mind that they can speak on. I think many times, even for the folks back in the U.S., Christ is listening, I think many times we make plans, we do all these things, we put in the effort, we put in finances and we know what we want to do, we think we know the way forward. And so then we assume that our plans are God's plans. And so when things don't go right, even in our own Christian walk, God's not really doing what we think He ought to be doing, we're a little taken aback or even offended and frustrated. But I think this is a very important point.

There are no accidents in our lives. There are no things happening that God is not going to control, that is not directing, that He's not doing a better way forward. I think for the key to all of this, one of the things that we realized was that what happened, the difficulties, as Alan has alluded to, are absolutely necessary for our walk and for the growth of this mission and for the good of that country. In that we look for a better way forward, God's way forward. We pray more, and God is included in that. And I think there are other stories to come, but I think it's hugely important to know that Mark has alluded to this constantly, that this is God's—God cares about this justice and His way forward. It may include some of our plans and it may be completely different, but I think the team has, in this particular case, has humbled themselves to go with God.

Yeah, that's absolutely beautiful. In so many different ways, we're seeing that lived out, that God will make a way where there seems to be no way. So moving on into day three, Mark, what happened? Day three, we were excited about because we felt like we had operationally overcome some of the fears and reluctantly that one individual had. We felt like we had in place a good layout mission for that evening. We initially, coming into the country, had only planned to do two nights, and obviously the third night was an add-on. And it really became a necessity because we knew a judge in a particular area of that country, and he had communicated to me—we had worked with him about eight or nine months ago—and he communicated to me, hey, please come back.

This is great work. Please come back into my area and help us. We need this help. There are several, you know, we know the clubs, we know the Intel too there, as far as where to go, and he had some he wanted to also share with us. And so I spoke with our team, you know, the American team, and we were all for it, but with the foreign team, and they said, yeah, we'd like to do it. Their commissioner and their chief was on board and said, you know, you guys are vital and helpful to our country.

We wouldn't do this without you right now in this environment, so please let's do it. So we got together that evening, and again, Allen can jump in because that's where he began. I think he can share how the brief went that night as well and our plan of action.

Sure. We developed a quick briefing because it was a short notice, and basically all we were doing is going from south to north in a kind of a straight line, as much as it can be over there, and from, I believe it was east to west, everything was leading back to the barracks. So you just kind of want to stay on one path and not circle back. I circled back, but this judge is a unique judge that we were working with. He is a very detail-oriented judge, and sometimes that's great, and sometimes that can be a hindrance, and I got to be honest, he kind of wears me out sometimes. Our primary mission is to go in there and get the children out of these clubs and facilitate their rescues. This judge, he wants to look for other things, such as violations of other criminal codes over there. So we may clear a whole club and have probably five, ten girls or whatever the case might be already extracted out of it, but then he wants to wait there and go through various areas that, in this case it was lockers. He wanted to check these lockers to see if there's any drugs or weapons or anything like that, but he does that at every club. Like I said, it's not a bad thing until the crowd on the street starts getting more volatile, and this night at this particular club the convoy pulled into a dead-end alley and was facing the wrong way.

In part it was their fault, and in part it was our fault because we didn't identify that, but we really didn't know it was a dead end. So we extracted out of the vehicles, went into this club, and it happened to be a partial pool party. We wound up getting like four or five people out of this club, and the judge on the way out, he went to start checking things. Well, as Mark had mentioned before, the crowds outside of the club, the longer they're waiting, the more aggravated they get. So I'll let Mark pick up on that when he was out there, and we also had a, one of the victims of a rescuing was a female, and she was right around 16 or 17 years old, and she didn't necessarily want to leave, so she became combative. So we were dealing with her in the street as well as Mark dealing with the crowd.

So I'll let Mark pick that up from there. Yeah, and speaking before I talk about the crowd, that girl particularly, it's not uncommon for a girl to try to show that she doesn't want to leave because if she has a pimp or an owner or manager there who owns and controls her, knows her or even holds possession of a child maybe she's had or just controls that girl, if she goes willingly, that's going to cause, in her mind, she thinks that's not the thing to do, so she'll try to combat. And that particular girl, I believe, was probably the case because she was in such a poverty low level. She was very different than many of the other girls. Clearly a girl who had been held and sold in sex trafficking for probably several years, and so her combativeness was fear, it was control from an owner. So yeah, we have comms, referring to the street, we do have comms, and Wren would be our best absolutely comms person, and she tries to teach us, not that we all haven't used comms over our lives, but in those wild environments, it is so hard to hear, and I don't know, I'm deaf in one ear, TC, you got one probably on the low side, and Alan, I think, how are your ears?

Yeah, they're useless in those environments. So we work with comms and we plan on them, but they really don't get used until we have an emergency, and in that particular time, I do recall, never have to do that before, that I had to call for everybody, just whatever you're into, just leave the building, come on out, and come help and provide assistance, because the men were getting violent, there was a lot of shoving, pushing. Had I not worked in this island before, I probably would have been using more force to bring the crowd back, but I know these people and I know how they get, and they like to get robbed locally, and it can be pretty harmless, though, physically, in most cases, and so we're just riding that out, keeping them at bay, pushing back the crowd, very much like a small riot, and handling that. I was so thankful when the team entered the street, we were able to always collect ourselves, last man out, and we know who's loading up, and then able, in that particular situation, because it was a dead end, we had to give protection to the vehicles, and one by one, back out and back up to move the area. I just remember getting in the car and just thanking the Lord, saying, Lord, thank you for the calmness you gave my team, thank you for the courage you gave the team, and thank you that we're all okay, that nobody got stabbed or shot, or no problems arose there. Wow, I hate we're out of time again, I'm sure all the listeners are too, but you can tell how this team needs our prayers, Ren, TC, Allen, and Mark. Mark, as the last note, I'm just curious, and I know the listeners are too, you know, how many girls did you actually, were you able to rescue that night, the third night? Yeah, so the total, if I could, actually, Rob, if I could give you the total, for three nights, there was 22 raids, 15 girls, nine boys, and that's a total of 24, and 18 of them were minors, and a lot of good things happened from that, a lot of reunification with family, and some evaluations, so that night was a good night, and we're so thankful for that, for our team, for that singing in favor. God is good. Thank you for listening. Thank you, guys.
Whisper: medium.en / 2024-02-24 19:30:30 / 2024-02-24 19:41:13 / 11

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