“Therefore, behold, I will allure her, and bring her into the wilderness, and speak tenderly to her. And there I will give her her vineyards and make the Valley of Achor a door of hope. And there she shall answer as in the days of her youth, as at the time when she came out of the land of Egypt.” Hosea 2:14,15
God’s pursuit of us is relentless, His love is steadfast, He is faithfulness. Never have these truths been more apparent to me than when we meet the girls on the street. Whether they gladly receive us or quickly push away it is in response to God’s pursuit of them.
We met a lot of women this last week, gave out all of our gift bags and had to call it a night. Amongst the many there were a few that stood out which I will do my best to recall and share with you now.
The first woman we spoke with was “S”, she was beautiful and apparently pregnant though she made no mention of it. Her heart was soft and she was very receptive, something about her cut straight to my heart, it was difficult for me to guard my emotions. We did pray for her and share with her that God had so much more for her, she seemed to know but there was a sense of hopelessness at the same time. “s” told us there was a lot of girls down the street by a certain motel and sure enough there were A LOT!
We first came upon a group of 3 girls, they were VERY young and VERY receptive. In fact, they approached us and asked us for prayer. Most of the girls we meet give us fake names and they change them all time and these girls did the same. One said her name was Special and was she ever. We began to pray over these women and it was evident that the Lord was in our midst! Special then pulled me aside and asked if she could pray. Wow, when this young woman began to pray! This was a woman who knew the Lord and knew she was not where He wanted her. She prayed with the power of the Holy Spirit over herself, the other girls, the men. She prayed with wisdom and discernment, this was God’s daughter. In all my years of ministering on the streets I have not experienced a prayer like that. Afterwards we talked about options for getting her off the street and I gave her my number to call if she wanted help to which she tearfully answered, “can I call you if I just want to pray?”
Just minutes later we met another group of girls, there were three of them and from what I could gather two were being turned out and the other was “training” them. The new girls couldn’t have been older than 15. When we asked if we could pray for them, one of the young girls let out a gasp and covered her mouth as if in shock. It was as though she couldn’t believe God was there, in this awful place, as a witness to the awful things she was about to do. God met her there, I am sure of that.
The last woman we spoke with was older and lived in a nearby motel making money to live by prostituting herself. She had just come out for the night and we were the first people she met with. She said she knew the Lord so I felt I could really challenge her to trust Him and live the life He had for her. She knew.
These last months have not been easy, there have been so many changes and transitions, my heart has been torn in several directions, it is sometimes a struggle to find enough volunteers to go out at night but one thing keeps me pressing in and pressing on, God has given me just a glimpse of His heart for His people. There are moments when I feel the intensity of His love, the devastation of rejection, the hope of transformation…these moments draw me in and push me forward. I am in awe and overwhelmed by His great love, His unending mercy, His lavish grace that draws us near.