International Ministries

Divine Encounter Part I

September 5, 2009 Journal
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Dear friends,

Twice a week, the outreach team heads to the red-light area to meet what we call divine appointments. The following is Part I of an outreach journal. This has been posted on our new website blog at www.nightlightinternational.com as well as on NightLight Bangkok Facebook Notes. Thank you for your continual support and prayers.

Divine Encounter Part I

Last night's outreach started out on the wrong foot - literally. A team member tripped over a wire strung across the sidewalk and fell flat on her face. She was determined to continue but when she started feeling intense pain one of us took her back to her room. Heading to the red light area I began to cross the main street when a huge pink tour bus made a sudden illegal u-turn and came charging toward us barely missing the woman behind me. "Oh God, get us back in sync with your plans. I'm not sure what is going on here," I prayed.
 
We reached the main entertainment plaza and I heard my name. Turning around, I saw "Gomer." The white fluffy party dress and faux-pearls around her neck didn't hide her weariness. We hugged her as a mother does a child, drawing her into a safe space. She said she had been in the hospital for three days getting treatment for mental illness. She stopped talking and reached into her big pink handbag. I waited, expecting to see the doctor's report but instead she pulled out a mask and put it on her face. Assuring us it wasn't the H1N1 flu, she continued her story. She was sore from shots and her stomach was in pain. "You need to go home and rest," I told her. She said, "Oh, I won't have sex tonight. I can't. The doctor told me not to." She was hoping for customers who would pay her 500 baht ($15) just to be a companion and talk. She had no place to go. No room. She would sleep on the street but she needed money to get her social medical card renewed.
 
Sounds easy enough; take her in. Put her up in the shelter. But Gomer has been coming and going for three years. The last time we took her back she went out, got drunk and returned the next morning with the customer. When told the customer could not enter the shelter, she left with him. There is no full-time house mother and there are children in the shelter. Who would look after her? Emily tried calling the volunteers who help us to shelter victims. No answer. Gomer has been gang-raped before on the street and I didn't want her sleeping there in this condition. Finally Emily got through so we waited with her until she was safely picked up. A Thai vendor was watching curiously. She walked up to Gomer and asked her, "what's wrong?' Muffled by the face mask, Gomer answered, "Psychologically I'm not doing well." That convinced the Thai lady that she should warn us off of getting involved. As Gomer left with the volunteer we explained to the lady, "Yes we know she drinks alcohol; yes, we know she sleeps with men every night; yes, we know she has some psychological problems. We have known her for years. We love her very much. She is our sister - our daughter, and we will keep on loving her for as long as it takes." She nodded not quite sure what to think. Gomer was in good hands and safe for another night and our work was just beginning.

Stay tuned for Part 2 and a divine encounter with a ladyboy coming soon! We love being part of God's team on outreach nights and it is a joy to share it with you and know that we are being prayed for. Thank you!
 
Sincerely,
 
Annie Dieselberg
CEO NightLight