img_2509-1There are people that make an indelible mark on your life. When you spend time with them they not only change your perspective but they fill your heart with joy. The last two days our team had the rare and unique opportunity to spend uninterrupted hours with women who face insurmountable poverty and have found their livelihood in a small red light area outside the city. In tiny one-room flats no bigger than many of your restrooms they raise children and earn a living with no more than a piece of fabric for privacy.

Destiny is an NGO that works to educate and teach these women that they were made for more. It is no simple task and the work can be exhausting and unrewarding for long periods of time.

Remember you are loved, He says to them through smiles of acceptance and words of encouragement.

With much chatter and big smiles the ladies experienced so many firsts. The looks of awe and giggles of relaxed, peaceful joy was music to our souls. None of them had ever stayed in a hotel much less a resort. Think having a bathtub is just a regular thing? How about having never seen one? They even wondered why they were given rooms to share with only one other person, the floor in a big room would have been fine. There were buffets of fancy foods and more outdoor games than they could even get to. These days were a just a moment to breathe and be away from the demands that are placed on them in the life of a sex worker. In these precious moments the noise of stress quiets so they might hear,

Child, remember you are loved. Just like I loved Rahab, I love you. You are brave, you are courageous, you need only to rest in Me. I am big enough for all of your struggles. I am.

Our team went to work caring not only for the women but for their children as well. From crafts to custom perfume to exercise to jewelry making to s’mores at a bonfire, all of it worked together to help them feel His love. They heard about Rahab and the God of Abraham and how He found value in her life and used her to change history. They listened with great emotion as they heard a testimony from one of our team of how God carried her through the darkest time in her life. It was hard for them to understand how she could be so open and we explained that it is God’s story lived out in us that compels us to share it.

Daughter, remember you are loved. I have sent My Son to show you. The love you see in my followers is real and it is for you.

The impact of their questions was heavy. “Our gods require so much from us. We have to do so many things to show our devotion. But your God, He sends you here to show us love, how is that?” “This story about Rahab is over 2000 years old, how is it that we have not heard this before?” Everything we shared, every touch, hug and laugh was an opportunity for them to experience the His love.

Remember you are loved.

As I write this the work in the red-light areas is beginning. My prayer tonight is that each of the women and children with us for the last two days will remember the words of God that they are perfectly loved.  Never stop praying for hope to arrive at their curtained doors. Pray that the seeds planted this weekend will come back to them in the dark places.  Pray that the efforts of heroic NGO’s like Destiny will continue and that the strength that can only come from the God above all gods will carry these heroes.


Ellen Gant with a baby who is loved by the community. She was born to a mom in the trade who left her and moved away. The community of women are raising this baby together.