“I’m so happy,” John* said, smiling and shivering a little from the waterfall’s cold water.
Angie* emerged from the water with a smile I won’t easily forget.
I’m still recovering from a recurring case of glorious goosebumps.
Today, my two dear friends from the red light district followed Jesus in believer’s baptism. We went to a nearby waterfall to baptize them. We celebrated with roast chicken, papaya salad, sticky rice and brownies.
In the past year, several women I work with started a ministry to reach out to men and women in the red light district here in Thailand.
God has placed on my heart a burden for the women and men in the red light district. As I’ve traveled for work, I’ve encountered stories of redemption, heartbreak and renewal in red light districts across Asia. These are my people, God told me. “They need me, they’ve always needed me, and this is the time,” He said.
For the past several months, I’ve been venturing into Thailand’s nightlife with my coworkers, trying to meet people and share Christ’s message of redemption. It’s been God, all God. Whenever I don’t feel like going or don’t feel like I have anything to say, that’s when God knocks my socks off.
Isn’t it awesome how His power is made perfect in our weakness? It’s so we know that this all-surpassing greatness is from Him and not from us.
Let’s back up a little and I’ll explain how we met Angie and John.
Prior to my busy summer travel schedule, I’d been going out once or twice with other women involved in the ministry to share God’s stories. A friend and I met Angie one night after a door closed with another friend of ours.
Angie approached us and invited us in to sit and talk at the massage parlor where she works. This started a beautiful friendship.
Angie told us she’d been wanting to learn about God and Christianity. This caught me off guard. Not many Thai people say this.
I told her that my friend and I like to talk about God and that we would love to talk with her. She was very excited. I pulled out my Thai-English Bible and started to flip through to the book of John. Just then, a little old man came, asking us to sign a petition. Another man came out of the massage parlor and walked purposely toward us.
“Blast,” I thought, we are going to get her in trouble.
Turns out, he was coming to make sure the man with the petition didn’t bother us. His name is John — and there started another beautiful friendship.
John also showed an interest in learning about God. Let’s study together, we suggested.
“But, where do I read, where do I start?” Angie asked. From there, my coworker and I decided to start studying John with them. We visited weekly, reading a chapter at a time, and studying. Angie’s English is excellent, John is wanting to improve his English. We used our Bible study times to also teach English.
The beginning of June, John trust Christ as his personal Savior. Several weeks later, Angie decided to become a believer.
Today, they were both baptized.
To God be the glory.
There’s much more to the story, so stay tuned to the next installment.