oh oswald

Oh Oswald. I love how Oswald Chambers always has just the words I need to hear. It’s really not him, it’s God and the Holy Spirit using the daily bits of wisdom to speak to my heart. April 29th’s entry is about gracious uncertainty, and boy, did I need to hear (or in this case,…

white as snow

They are white as snow. I wish I could say I was talking about my friends in the red light district. My Thai friends recently knit beautiful white scarves for me and my friends as a present. I wish I could say my Thai friends were also white as snow – they are workers in…

When a heart breaks

She walks out of the massage parlor with the sun-glassed man. Japanese, I think. He leaves quickly. She sits down on the bench, avoiding eye contact. Everyone around knows what’s just happened. As I’ve sat and listened to my friend teach English the past 30 minutes, she’s been upstairs in a room with this man,…

call me rude

Rihanna’s “Rude” plays in the background of a darkly silhouetted bar. Western men lean in to whisper dirty nothings into the ears of petite and scantily-clad Thai women. These women work in Thailand’s sex industry. Many come from eastern Thailand to find work in the city. Some come under false pretenses. Some know what they’re…

Promise of unconditional love

Americans wear rings on their left hands, right? To show you are married? Last night I went down to the red light district to visit my friend John.* His grandmother wants him to get married and have children so she can have great grandchildren. John is gay and I don’t think his grandmother knows this….

Clean, unclean, washed in His blood

“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…

washed in the waterfall

“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…