Tattoo Removals and Cover-Ups for Jesus

Chris Baker, the ministry director of Ink180, has dedicated his life to rescuing and restoring sex trafficking victims to health and wholeness in Chicago—for free

If you would have told me two years ago I'd be doing tattoos for Jesus, I would have laughed at you, but the fact of the matter is, that's exactly what I do every day, and I love it. I got laid off from my full-time job at a technology business about five years ago and was doing tattooing part-time to make money. When my family moved to Chicago from L. A., one day I went out to the woods to spend some quality time with God, and a very clear message I got was, "What do you enjoy doing more than anything else?" and then, "Would you do it for free?"

Besides hanging out with my wife and kids, I realized I loved tattooing, but I thought there was no way it was God's work. Most people were cool with my tattoos at church, but others would say things like, "Tattoos aren't biblical." As I went back and forth praying to God, I started having little clips of my life replay in front of me. I grew up in L. A., and it's no fun out there. I saw far too many friends die, and far too many of my friends were put in prison. It's just depressing. As I remembered the gang funerals I'd been to, and several of my friends who had told me, "Man, I'm out of a job because I've got these gang tattoos . . . I just can't seem to move past this life," those memories made me realize—this is it.

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