“I only do massages,” Angie* told me a few months ago.
She told me that she used to work for a “clean” massage parlor.
“Do you know what I mean by that?” she asked me.
I nodded, slowly.
The massage parlor she where she works now isn’t a clean parlor.
Angie said many of the other women she works with do “bad things,” like flirt and arrange to meet with men later for more money. She told me what they do is wrong and she doesn’t like it. She likes the art of massage and isn’t in the business for the “extra stuff.”
“I only get 80 baht, but I am not going to do bad things,” she said.”Do you understand what I mean?”
Yes, I said.
As we drove to church, Angie pointed out the clean and unclean massage parlors.
She said the other girls give her a hard time and try to tell her about all the money she’ll get. I tried to encourage her and told her she is doing the right thing. I shared about how our bodies are the temple of the Holy Spirit and doing “bad things” doesn’t please God.
Angie makes a pittance. Her two children stay with extended family in another city. She’s living in a small room that she shares with several other women that’s above the massage parlor working to save money for them. She comes from a huge family, I think she has at least 10 siblings.
They are so poor. It breaks my heart.
At church, the speaker talked about struggling with worry and how the Lord answered his prayers and showed him that He is the provider. It was a simple message, but oh so apropos. Angie worries about money and supporting her family and she said the message really encouraged her.
I worry about such small things. I have enough to eat, enough to support myself and enough go see 3D movies. She has so much more to worry about.
During the prayer time at church, Angie asked if I could teach her how to pray. I was ecstatic.
I told her praying is just like talking to a dear friend. I told her I say God or Father usually when I start and share my worries and requests. Then, I told her I thank Him for how He’s answered my prayers and I praise Him for who He is.
She asked if she could hold our hands and pray. Precious. Her prayer was so sweet and simple. It gives me goosebumps, yes, the glorious kind, just thinking about it. She prayed for my grandparents, who I told them had been sick and she prayed for herself to understand who God is.
When she finished praying, her face was radiant. I don’t say that in the cliche way. She was literally radiating.
“That felt so good!” she said.
God heard your prayer, I told her. I told her she can pray wherever and whenever she wanted to.
Angie is one of those people you feel like you’ve known longer than you really have.
I know my friends and coworkers would agree. Three of us have gotten to know Angie and I’d daresay we’ll never be the same.
Stay tuned for more stories of God’s greatness and how He’s moved and worked in Angie’s life.