Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Passport Through Darness by Kimberly L. Smith REVIEW

Passport through Darkness: A True Story of Danger and Second Chances
We are here to stand for the one no one else will stand for.
Kimberly Smith was an average American churchgoer, wife and mother- until she dared to ask God His dreams for her life. Traveling around the world and deep into the darkness of her own heart, Kimberly's worst fears collided with her faith as she and her family discovered the atrocities of human trafficking. But it was in that broken place that a self-centered life was transformed into an international effort to save thousands from modern-day slavery, persecution, disease and genocide. 
Through painful trials, serious errors, and gut-wrenching fear, Kimberly reminds us of what God will do when one person puts her life on the line for His purpose. Along the way, she inspires you to discover your own story-to live your purpose and feel God's pleasure. Here you will find courage to live the life God dreamed of when He dreamed of you. 

From beginning to end, this book was full with stories that pull at your heartstrings; it brings tears, laughter, anger and compassion. The injustice and brutality that Kimberly saw first-hand through out the book which was inflicted upon others and on her will make you want to jump right into the pages of the book like a time machine to change   the sever cruelty. Taking you back to what was happening and stop the evil that was   perpetrated to the innocent. 
When I started reading this book, the first story that Kimberly told from Sudan had me feeling angry, offended and shocked. I was angry with the people who were doing the depraved acts of murder and rape. I was also stunned in unbelief at the mother who the story relay because to me, she just laid in the tall grass watching her daughter go through this torture of being raped and beaten continuously until she was carried away and never seen again. As a mother myself, I could not watch that. I could not let that happen to my own son or daughter.
I had to remind myself, it is a different culture. Their ways of living, their beliefs, traditions are completely different from my own. This mother was doing what she thought she had to in order to save herself and her newborn baby that she had strapped to her back. Unbeknown to her, her newborn was already killed by a bullet. This left her grieving for her three children.
After reading this first story, I needed to take a break from reading the book, because the first story itself had such an impact on me. I wasn’t sure if I could continue reading the book.  But after about a week, I picked the book back up…and could not put it down.
There are so many stories like the one above that will make your heart break; such as Kimberly and her partner over in Sudan, Lual Atak had to turn children away from their makeshift orphanage because they didn’t have enough space or supplies for them and were already tight on space and supplies. It was heartbreaking for them to turn these kids way because they knew they may not see them again with the wild animals out there that could very possibly attack them and turn fatal. There were other stories that are sweet and selfless like When Luak Atak had an opportunity to come to America, he chose to stay in Sudan and help the orphans.
I am so glad I didn’t give up on this book, this story, this journey Kimberly and her husband Milton experienced, is so powerful. But if they hadn’t gone through this journey, their organization Make Way Partners wouldn’t have been born, the help from Kimberly and Milton may not have happened.
 It started when they moved to Spain as missionaries. They had been in Spain a little over a year when they were told about a British couple who had a home for African immigrant children. Kimberly and Milton saw the bad conditions these kids lived in but that was only the beginning. By chance, they found out about the human trafficking going on in this home. One day while the couple was visiting the home to help, one of the little boys came up to Kimberly asking for Vaseline. That day, Kimberly and Milton found out about the sexual slavery going on in the home. After all their fighting and trying to stop this, the kids were placed elsewhere and they weren’t told where and couldn’t find out. Kimberly and her husband returned to the states and educated themselves about human trafficking and slavery. This led Kimberly going to Sudan. But because of her husband’s health and fight against diabetes, he was forced to stay home.
I could go on and on about this book. In the beginning I was hesitant, but after taking a short break from it, I could not put it down and was sad when I finished it because even though it was full of sad stories that people Kimberly and her husband met and helped and they themselves went through, it was so nice to hear what was being done to change and stop these sad things. But it was also full of great stories of how great God is and how having faith in Him and believing He is in control and letting Him be in control instead of trying to do everything yourself is so much better and always works out much better.
I would say this book is a must read. There are parts in this book that are not easy to read besides what I have mentioned and you may need a tissue or two. But I would put this on your must-read list. I would recommend this book most definitely.

To find out more about Kimberly and Milton’s Organization Make Way Partners:

Other great organizations:

Bethany Kids:

The Voice of the Martyrs:

African Inland Mission:

African Leadership:

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