Monthly Archives: January 2010

Day 32.

I want to sleep off these emotions.
I could.
I could fall asleep in an instant and pretend like I didn’t see what I saw or hear what I heard tonight.
That would be quite nice actually. The comfort of sleep would be a cheap escape from the heartache that has beset me.
I also want to throw up. I would love to be able to detox this gnawing sickness from my system; this churning in my stomach from watching foreign men run their hands over young “dancers” near-bare bodies.

I am undone.
Human Traffiking: it was always this injustice I heard of from afar.
But not tonight.
Tonight there are names and faces and personal stories attached to it.
Tonight everything I have ever complained about pales in comparison to the reality of these girls situations.

   Tonight was our fourth night of evangelism in the red light disctrict of Olangapo, Philippines. For ministry our team  breaks up into a couple groups and heads into the clubs. Inside, the dancers are up on stage dressed in crop tops and tiny skirts, moving their hips back and forth to the music blaring over head. Luckily, they dont dance nearly as raunchy as regular club goers back home and this helps make it bareable for our guys to be there. The dancers are on 15 to 30 minute shifts, so we talk to the ones that are standing around. We introduce ourselves and then ask them simple questions to get to know them. How old they are, how many children they have, whether they like working there. If they have time and you ask the right questions they may open up about their families and their dreams for the future. And we dance with them! Haha! I have actually had a blast the past few nights just dancing goofy with some of the girls. I really believe our team has brought a huge amount of joy with us in each club we enter, and by carrying the presence of the Lord with us we shift the atmosphere from darkness to light.

  In the first club we entered tonight it was really hard to meet the girls because the “mamasan” or pimp mother was glaring at us the whole time. Eventually she turned her back for a bit and i went and sat down by some girls. Roslynn was 19, and when asked if she had any children she exclaimed with pride, “No! I’m a virgin. I’m a cherry girl.” I was struck by the fact that Roslynn would not remain a virgin for much longer, eventually the mamasan would receive a high enough bidder and she would either have to sell herself or loose her job. I can only imagine the fear there is each afternoon as Roslynn goes to work and wonders if this will be the night. I pray she will escape.

 After getting to know them, we invited all our new friends to come eat with us at a local restaurant this weekend. I am excited for our team to get to share with them their potential and the plans their maker has for their futures. Then the leader from this base will invite the girls to co

me spend 3 months free of charge here at the YWAM home.   If they wish to continue on, they enter into a two year discipleship program. The women have times of teaching, worship, prayer and intercession, work duties, and small groups. They also receive practical skills and secondary schooling; t hat way when the girls complete their time here they have new skills or a vocation to provide for themselves and their families.  

We have been living here at the Ywam base for just over a week. Most of the women we live with are ex prostitutes themselves. Through various teaching times we have gotten to know them personally and have heard their testimonies of how God saved them from the exact same situations as these girls we meet in the bars. Hearing them share and seeing the joy they have in the Lord gives us the motivation to go out each night.

Tonight my heart aches, yet there is hope!

(My friend Marissa and I inside Wet Spot, the club she works at.)

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Greetings from the Philippines!

I am lacking in creativity right now so I will let you all in on some inserts from my personal journal.

Outreach Day 3
Baguio City
Wed, Dec16
There is a chill that seeps  in through the window and I pull my covers up to my chin to keep warm. The faint smell of smoke follows and I am instantly taken back to when I was young and we still had our wood burning stove. It is the Christmas season and I am completely at home here in the Philippines! After a very busy and emotional school I find some much needed rest. I am ready to pour out, to mother this team, to love these beautiful Filipino people. God you know me so perfectly, that this was exactly where I need to be. I am fully alive! The sun has started to hit the houses on the mountainside and the early morning fog completes the picture. I wake up with the feeling of being completely loved and completely in love.

Day 8
Bagong Village (Pop. 200 families. Thirteen displaced by the recent typhoon.)
Mon, Dec21
An amazing hour and a half jypnee ride along windy mountain roads. Then we hiked for 45 minutes to get to Bagong.It was breathtaking, like nothing I’ve ever seen before! After lunch the boys started working on the house we were going to be building. Us girls went exploring and walked up beside this huge landslide. There was a couple houses directly beside the slide and it appeared that one had been taken out. I sat on a rock and just tried to imagine how terrifying it would be to hear the rocks start falling and loosing all control of you and your  families safety.
For dinner we had cow intestine and then Yela and I drank cow poo soup. Not as horrid as it sounds, just thinking about what it was while trying to swallow was gross.
After din din we had an evangelistic open air outside and  about 50 or 60 villagers came. It went really well and practically everyone stood up to receive Jesus at the end- praise the Lord!

Day 9
Bagong Village
Tues, Dec 22

From 9 30 till lunch I used a nail to knot countless wires to connect the metal support beams for the house, it was a blast! Sarah killed the chickens for lunch. After lunch I picked some coffee beans and ground them so they could be dried. The woman here, Jenny, says she sells them for about 75 Pisos a kilo. Later we helped shovel cement into buckets to get passed along and poured into the foundation of the house. Ate pig brain and ear for dinner. Another great open air. After the service this little old man came up to me and thanked us for bringing enjoyment to the village since the typhoon came. The stars are so clear and bright tonight, how they tell of His glory!

(Pouring cement for the foundation of the house.)

Day 11
Thur, Dec24

Left Bagong. Had a delightful ride on the top of the jypnee back to Baguio. Sam and I went to the mall and ate way to much food. Good and relaxing.
Merry Christmas from our family to yours!

Day 15
Lo-oh ( “ December to Remember” Youth Camp, 4 hour van ride away)
Mon, Dec28

You can see your breath in the early morning air.

Today was absolutely perfect! Camp is going well, Celeste, Sarah and Mandy preached, we had game time, growth groups, amazing food. To start tonight off George led us in worship and we somehow ended up in the front having a dance party.  After Mandy taught she had an alter call and Holy Spirit showed up- people were crying, trembling, getting slain in the Spirit. And then we topped the night off with more dancing!

(With some kids at the camp.)

Day 17
Drive from Lo-oh to Baguio
Tues, Dec 30

Today I met a little girl named Ruby Lee and realized just how naturally wicked my heart is.

A bus lost its breaks and went over the mountainside. We arrived shortly after. Subconciously my first thought is cool we get to see an accident.
I get out of the van, cross the street and see the bus about 100 meters down below. Most of the passengers are up on the road, recovering from the shock, some men are still at the bus helping others out. I walk over to a jypnee and peer inside at the injured, who are about to leave for the hospital. People are trembling, blood is speckled on men and women and children. I look at the pool of blood on the ground and am struck with the reality of the situation. This is not a cool outreach story, these are real peoples lives being affected. I am helpless to help so I mumble some prayers. I spot a little girl weeping in the squatting position a few feet above me. I climb the slope and sit beside her, rubbing her back trying to comfort her. She has cut her lip and so spits continuously trying to see if its done bleeding. Her mom shows up and tells us how the accident happened. I ask for her daughters name. It is Ruby Lee, and her mom asks me to stay with her as she goes to get the rest of their stuff. I sit there in the dirt and try to withold my tears. A few minutes later her mom returns and we leave. We get back into the van and I welcome the conviction that sets in. Accidents arent cool anymore.

Day 18
Baguio City
Thur, Dec 31

Today I have lived 23 years. I don’t even think its possible to love life any more than I do.
As per my request we had pizza, donuts, and watched Braveheart. At 11 we walked to the mall and watched fireworks go off all over the city. On the way home our team linked arms and skipped down the street screaming out “Happy New Years!” to everyone we passed. A memorable birthday!

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