Skip to main content

Highway to Hell







Highway to Hell: The Road Where Childhoods are Stolen by Matt Roper

Injustice, human trafficking, sex slaves, all these words have a ring to our ears that is neither pleasant nor helpful in human flourishing.  Traveling down Brazil’s highway, BR-116, journalist Matt Roper and singer Dean Brody didn’t expect they’d find miles and miles of roads filled with men seeking sex from young girls who are trapped in prostitution.  Not only is the is the situation bleak but many times the very family members who are supposed to protect and provide for their young girls push them out in the streets to make money by selling their bodies.  Sickening, this drama plays out each day and each night on the long stretch of road winding through Brazil.  This book, Highway to Hell, is Matt and Brody’s experience first-hand with the ravages of prostitution along BR-116 and the hope that they might be a part of a change for the better, for these girls and for their families. 

Take Josilene, for instance, a fifteen year old girl who loves to hang out with her friends.  Yet, her friends offer her no hope for her life.  “The girls would stop by late at night, take Josilene out of her bed, and go off to thumb for lifts on the motorway.  Sometimes she would be gone for days, ending up hundreds of miles away.  Josilene’s “friends”, it appeared, would make her pay for the journey with her own body.” (153)  Here Mom continually has tried to push her away from these friends but the pull to fit into a group and be part of something is so great.  As the news came that her Dad, whom she’d never met was possibly in another town, Matt and Dean agreed to pick up Josilene in the morning for the trip.  Come morning time, Josilene was nowhere to be seen but with her friends in town down the road.  It is the life of those caught in the midst of slavery that breaks our hearts, yet freeing them takes a huge amount of people.

Matt and Dean could not go back to their respective homes without telling the world of this horrific world of enslavement and sex trading that was going on in Brazil.  Matt taught a number of YWAM groups about the situation on BR-116 and interest was soon sparked enough to have groups committed to helping these towns along the highway.  Yet, the distressing thing was getting people to see that child prostitution needs to be stopped.  One lady named Rita comments in the book that, “Child prostitution’s just part of life here,” Rita told us.  People who have grown up here don’t see it like you and I do, even the Christians.  Most people have stopped seeing it at all.” (168)  Failing to see the gross injustice and degradation of human life is not something we should stop seeing as Christians.  Yet, this is the kind of view that people take when they are comfortable in their own skin, not looking after others.


Thanks to Monarch Books and Kregel Publications for the copy of this in exchange for an honest review.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Black Earth: The Holocaust as History and Warning

Black Earth: The Holocaust as History and Warning by Timothy Snyder
Misperceptions, misconnections, and missed observations are just some of the issues that Timothy Snyder raises in his book, Black Earth, concerning the Holocaust.  Snyder, no stranger to the frontlines of scholarship on the Holocaust, with his previous book Bloodlands, that concerns the land from Hitler to Stalin, takes a look at the Holocaust from new sources and new avenues of thought.  How did some nation-states survive relatively unscathed from Nazi persecution while others, notably Jewish populations, succumb to a wave of killings?  Also, what was the role of the Soviet Union in the war and how did Stalin effect changes in the Final Solution?  These questions are only two of the many that Snyder answers in his detailed account of the Holocaust.
One of the best chapters was entitled The Auschwitz Paradox.  Generally when the public thinks about the Holocaust, we think of Auschwitz first or at the top of our mental m…

the great spiritual migration

The Great Spiritual Migration by Brian D McLaren

Brian McLaren and his own pithy way brings to the foreground and emphasis on a new kind of Christianity. The kind of faith that Brian envisions is a kind of migration not been set in the bedrock of beliefs that is unmoving but rather shifting with both culture and with faith. His new book the great spiritual migration is exactly that, a pointed work that encapsulates a vision towards the future where Christianity is changing and its peoples lives are changed as well.

Brian states in the introduction, "but we also know that for a lot of people Christianity is malfunctioning, seriously so, and it's not pretty. This kind of frustration with conventional Christianity is what McLaren gets gets to at the heart of this message is concerned with a number of different clusters unbelief. One, namely that Christianity has been stuck in a set of propositions or beliefs that has controlled churches in the faith, rather then a spirit of love t…

NKJV Study Bible by Thomas Nelson

NKJV Study Bible by Thomas Nelson Publishers
Growing up with the NIV, the NKJV was not a bible I was familiar with.  This new NKJV Study Bible takes all of the features of the Thomas Nelson Study Bible and makes them better.  Right out of the box I noticed that the Bible was considerably lighter than most study bibles I have read.  Further, the text font was much larger than most study editions, although I’m not quite sure of the size. The aquamarine color was a great touch and the Bible was finely put together, enduring the wear of many coming years of use.
Why is this Bible worth the purchase?  First, the study notes were great for extra handling of particular confusing and messy areas of Scriptures, both Old and New Testaments.  Yet, the study notes aren’t an obstruction to the reading of the biblical text.  Clearly, the editors have taken great care in making the text stand out and the notes illuminate certain themes and areas of Scripture.  Second, the NKJV takes into account all t…