From tragedy to triumph: Shelter opens for survivors of human trafficking

Nashville, Tennessee

On her knees in a living room in Mt. Juliet, Tennessee, surrounded by a family devastated by tragedy, Rondy Smith heard what she described as a heavenly voice in her spirit.

Rondy and the family had been praying together for God’s direction on how He wanted to bring beauty from the ashes of the family’s violent loss.

“Whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will hear a voice behind you, saying, ‘This is the way; walk in it,’” Smith says. “It was a ‘holy ground’ moment and all present felt as if they should remove their shoes.”

That moment in May 2014 led to the surprising answer to Smith’s longtime prayers that God would provide a peaceful, safe and beautiful place of refuge in Nashville for women and girls who have been rescued from human trafficking.

It had been a long journey to this confirmation of God’s plan.  God had laid a burden on Smith’s heart back in 2011 to establish a shelter for survivors of human trafficking. During the following three years, along with many volunteers and supporters from her congregation at Hermitage Church of the Nazarene, Smith laid well thought-out plans for such a venture. Rest Stop, standing for “Restore Survivors, Stop Oppression” was born. 

For the rest of the story, see Engage magazine.

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