At Rahab some exciting things are happening as always. Its one place where God is continuously surprising me and reminding me of his power and grace. As draining as it can be at times it is also the encouragement I sometimes need. Last week, a 22-year-old girl came to us at Rahab. We had spoken to her the same night that two women had come out of Super Queen. She was the third girl but that night had not responded. She came in this week after having found out that she is HIV positive. She was scared, depressed and out of hope. She didn't know where to go or what to do. She said if Pu (my co-worker) had not reached out to her that night a few weeks ago she did not know what she would have done. When I came in to Rahab Tuesday night, she was watching the Jesus movie. When it ended my two co-workers announced that they were going to the bars and leaving me to keep her company.
What do you say to someone who has just found out at 22 they have AIDS? We talked some and I held her in my arms while she sobbed out her grief. Then we talked about the Jesus movie. She said it must be true - there must be a God! As we talked I realized that she already believed and was probably ready to accept Christ. I have never led anyone to Christ in Thai. None of the Thai staff were around to do it for me—but she seemed so ready. So I ventured - "Do you feel you are ready to accept Christ in your heart as your Lord or would you like to wait and think about it some more?"(If she wanted to wait then I knew the Thais could handle it!) She said she was ready! I apologized for my poor religious Thai and I lead her to Christ through prayer. When we started praying her head was down, ashamed. When we were done praying I looked up and though her eyes were still closed her face was lifted upward and she had an incredible look of peace and joy on her face. I let her soak in the glory for a while. The next night she went to a "revival" service at a Thai church and made her decision public. On Thursday, during the Rahab worship time when the leader asked who would like to share a testimony she eagerly jumped in. She said "I want to thank God that I now have a new life in Christ. Thank you to everyone here for the encouragement and love that you have shown me." I wanted to cry to see this new Christian who two days earlier saw darkness caving in on her. Now she has hope for her future!
Sometimes, the world seems overwhelmingly sorrowful. I hear and meet needs and discouragement daily. Sometimes it wears me down. When God works like this however, it lifts my spirit and I am reminded that God is alive and at work in the hearts of his children. What a way to celebrate Easter - to be reminded of the power of the cross by seeing someone who was lost find their way to God and discover new life—to see someone whose blood has been stained, cleansed by the blood of the Lamb! In the past month, four women have left the bars and have come to know the saving love of Christ!