It’s been a crazy few weeks clumsily journeying through this new path God has placed before me. Many days there just aren’t words. I feel numb. And truthfully when words come they are few as the story of my life seems raw and sometimes this journey needs to remain censored for this time.
So thanks always for your patience, your encouragement and support as I awkwardly follow where God is leading.
Recently, I stood there quietly in a small room prepared to host those who would volunteer to reach those trapped in sexual exploitation on the streets. My heart was racing and my knees were knocking. This room had become a sanctuary of prayer the past few months as I wrestled through what God was calling us to.
But this night, there were to be five of us — two men, three women. We had trained and prayed for three months, and this evening was going to be different.
Training was done, now we were to do!
The emotion was quivering in my throat as we talked through our evening. We decided who had what responsibilities before we hit the streets to seek girls to shower them with a red rose, hand-made card, and a tube of lip stick. (all donated, see pic above)
After prayer, we left to the ministry site to let girls know they are not forgotten and they are loved despite their circumstances.
Stopping for others is scary.
A year ago I did a series “Stop for the One Tuesday,” where I challenged myself to stop and help someone weekly. That series (read here) wrecked my heart.
The challenge was difficult, but yet so fulfilling as I stepped over my fears weekly to love on someone.
After a year of stopping, you would think that this night would have been comfortable. But it was anything but. As we loaded in the vehicle, we began praying for the night, our safety, but mostly for the girls. We prayed God would lead us to the girls who needed encouragement that night.
After about 30 minutes out, we rounded a corner on our specified route and there were two girls. We stopped and as we approached them we were met with a wall of uncertainty on their part. While they didn’t trust us (as would be expected and common), they received their rose and goodies. The conversation was limited, but we had done what we were called to do — stop and love others and give them hope.
A red rose will bring all to tears.
I was so touched by the moment. I continued to pray for those two as we continued on along our route.
We soon approached a girl on the side of the street standing their alone. It was a stopping moment. A moment forever engraved in my memory.
As soon as our team of three women took one step towards her and she saw the rose she began to cry. Uncontrollably. We let her know we were there to offer her hope.
Her first words were, “I need a life change.” We all were in tears as we listened to this precious girl . . .
“I’m scared out here. Girls get killed. I don’t have enough to care for my son. He just had a birthday and I didn’t even have enough money to bake him a cake and that’s all he asked for. I’m addicted to street drugs. I just found out I’m pregnant and I’ve got to get clean. I’ve tried to detox myself, but I need help!”
How do you drive off after that?
We visited for quite awhile breaking all rules. These girls are working and we honor their time. But this moment was different. It was a God appointment.
After praying for this precious girl, we said our tearful good-bye’s and loaded up. Pulling away my mind was screaming, what are we doing leaving her there! No women should have to be out there scared to death of what was to come on the streets. This is nuts — we’re just leaving her there!
Tears flowed freely among the whole team. We sat in silence with a few prayers uttered aloud. Our hearts had been touched and we realized we’d never be the same.
Stuff like this will mess you up!
I still picture that beautiful women sobbing through tears because we showed up just at the right moment. And of course, I still pray I’ll encounter her again on the streets.
Stopping for others messes you up. I’m not sure I like this!
You see I like things that wrap up nicely. Kind of like a big package that you can put a pretty bow on top and know it’s going to bless someone. But here in the messy world — for the most part it just stays messy.
Oh friend, I tell you it’s much easier to lay your head down on your pillow at night when you have pretty images floating through your mind that help lure you to sleep.
But these images are messy — messy beautiful as they stir your soul to lay awake all night praying.
Have you been messed up lately? Oh how I’d love to hear your story.
You can learn more about this ministry, Beautiful Night, by clicking here.