Well I have now been in Pattaya for about 6 weeks and I am absolutely loving it!!! I have met so many new friends and have gotten to connect with old friends also. Just a little info about my job here...I teach English 2 times a day 3 days a week. On the days I don't teach, we have meetings and go prayer walking around the beach and popular bar areas...which is pretty much everywhere. We go on bar outreach in teams 3 nights a week also. Pu and I visit girls that I meet through outreach and English class a couple nights a week too. Pu lives with me now and is my ministry sidekick!! I don't know what I would do without her!
I have held 2 dinner nights at my room so far. They were great!! I am going to try to do this at least once a week. I am trying for every Sunday. This has been the highlight of my last 2 weeks. I have brought food and dessert to Yam's bar several times now and I have a good relationship with many of the girls there. I love walking up and seeing them all smile when they see me. It puts a smile on my face!!
So...now for the really important stuff. I have prayer requests and specific girls to be praying for.
Wow where do I even begin? Well I will just list them and tell you specific requests then be more general.
Yam (23) - Ahhh I love this girl so much and everything in me wants to see her come to the Lord. She has such a kind heart and a fun spirit. Everyone likes being around her. I invited her to a day on an island with some of the Tamar staff and volunteers just a couple weeks after I got here. I honestly didn't think she would come...but she surprised me and said she wanted to come. She is normally out until 5am and sleeps till 4 or 5 in the afternoon sometimes even 6. I was supposed to pick her up at 9am. I honestly thought that when I called her that morning she was going to not answer or tell me she couldn't come. Well, I was pleasantly surprised again. I called her at 8:45 and told her I was on my way. She said ok. When I picked her up I told her that I was scared she was gonna change her mind. She said no Mo, if I tell you I will go then I will go. She went to sleep at 5am and woke up to come hang out with me and a bunch of Christians at 8:45. I think that is God at work right there!! So I was majorly thanking him for that! Throughout the day we talked a little about Water's Edge and how much I love my church. I bragged about the band and let her listen to some songs that I recorded during church. She liked it. Pu told me later that she made several comments throughout the day about us being so happy all the time. Everyone was smiling all day and was so nice to each other. She sees a difference in us. She also shared with me that she doesn't believe in love. So my prayer is that God will continue to open Yam's eyes to the joy and peace there is in Jesus. That God will soften and prepare her heart to be open to know and receive his love. Also, that her dad will start working more and provide for himself so that Yam can say goodbye to the life of destruction.
Niky (26)- I met Niky in English class. She is so sweet and soft spoken. I visited her at her bar last Thursday night because she had a customer for 2 weeks and I hadn't seen her. Pu and I walked up and she was sitting by herself looking kind of sad. I asked her how she was doing and she said she was sick and not feeling well. I asked her why she was at work if she was sick and she said because she missed work last night and didn't want to pay her bar fine again. (A bar fine is what a customer pays to the bar if they want to take the girl out of the bar. If they miss work, they have to pay it themselves.) I offered to pay her bar fine and invited her to come hang out with me and Pu in our room. She accepted the invitation. We were able to have some good conversation. I learned that she absolutely hates what she is doing and is only doing it because her family needs money. She worked at a grocery store before she moved to Pattaya to be a bar girl. During this visit in my room, she told Pu that she would be learning English somewhere else though. Pu had already told me that she felt like Niky had some fear about God and Buddah. Pu thinks she found a new place to learn English because at Tamar Center we talk about God after every class. But I have a good relationship with her, so I am not going to let that discourage me. I think God is working in her life and she is scared, so she is running. I know God is in control and will continue to work in her life. She literally lives right around the corner from me so I will continue to invite her over. So, pray for the seeds that have been planted to grow. Pray that the truth that she has heard over the last several weeks will overcome all fear that she has. Pray that she will know that my door is always open and that she will see God's light and love in me. And that her heart will be softened and prepared to receive Christ as her savior so that she can be rescued out of a life of destruction.
Pewah (15)- I have seen this child go from an innocent little girl sitting with her legs and arms crossed in front of the bar to now standing up, dancing around a little, and smoking. Her aunt brought her her to work in a bar for her family. She told one of the Tamar ladies in the hair salon that she did not want to go with the men, but her aunt made her. It breaks my heart to see her sit out there everyday and see men approach her. Then I get sick to my stomach when I see her actually walk away with one or walk to the alley to go to the room upstairs with a man that could be her grandpa. My fear is that she is is getting numb to it though. She has come to accept this life and has no hope. She is in the salon often and I get to talk to her. She knows very little English so it makes it very difficult to communicate. But I know God will speak through me when the time is right. Please pray for Paewah. Pray that while she is in the salon the ladies will speak truth into her life and that everything that she hears will sink in. Pray for a way out of this horrible hopeless life style.
Now I will just list names and ages if I know them.
There are so many more, but I can't remember their names right now. So please just pray for this girls and all the girls we come in contact with. Pray for them to have receptive hearts and minds and that any fear will be cast out by God's truth. Pray that when we plant the seeds of truth they will fall on the fertile soil and not the hard rocky soil. Pray for protection from harm and diseases. Pray for hope and a future for these girls.
Pray also for me. That I will be a light it this dark dark place. That I will be led by the Holy Spirit and not by my own plans. Pray that my eyes will be opened to what God wants me to see. Pray that I will not make myself too busy to spend time with God. How will I know where he wants me to go and what he wants me to do if I don't ask him and wait for and answer??
That's All Folks!!
Thanks for the prayers.