Last week, we went out for our weekly outreach into the brothels. I found a couple of young girls selling food inside the blue brothel. The girls were about 10 years old so I asked them where they were from and it turns out they live at a local ministry sight of another SIM ministry. So I walked them back to their home to warn their mothers of the danger of allowing young girls to sell food in brothels.
Once I finished talking to the mothers, I turned around and realized that there was a woman who had followed us out of the brothels and was asking us for help. She was in the process of telling my Nigerian teammate Christy that she wanted help to leave prostitution, so I joined the conversation.
This woman told us that she has 7 children and has been selling herself for the last 15 years in order to pay for their schooling and food. She told us that she herself had not eaten in days. She then told us that if we could give her 70,000(@$475) naira to pay her rent for the year that she wouldn’t need to sell herself anymore.
My mind started racing and I started praying to God for help as fast as I could. How can I not help a woman who comes to me for help, but how can I hand money to a prostitute. I know that lying is part of their trade, not to mention the fact that I didn’t have 70,000 naira. I couldn’t take her in with 7 children. My halfway house is already at capacity. I could squeeze in a couple more women, but a woman with 7 children, no way!
I stepped towards this woman and with complete honesty I said, “I don’t give money to prostitutes, so that is not an option. I don’t know how I can help you, but God knows what you need so let’s go before him in prayer.” She agreed, so I prayed for her.
I then explained to her that no amount of money would help her until she knew Christ as her savior. I explained that we are all born sinner and we all deserve hell and in our sinful state, we are enemies of God. He has no promises of protection for us and in fact speaks of working against us. But, when we choose to switch sides and serve Him, He not only accepts us as allies, but He makes us His children. I told her that just like she loves her children enough to do anything for her children, God loves His children and promises to care for them. I invited her to become a child of God.
This is when she started opening up to us and explaining that she has a husband at home that sends her out. What does one do that with that info? Well, I checked to make sure my tazor was in my bag, and then I told her to get in my car. We were going to meet her husband!
We drove to the other end of town. Parked about a mile from her house because the road was too small for most cars, and then we walked a mile up to her house. I walked in expecting to see a family starving, but was surprised to see her two oldest children in the living room dressed nicely and looking well fed. Even the house looked a step above the way most Nigerians live.
Christy and I sat down and then we were soon joined by her husband who also looked nicely dressed. The two older children looked like they were in their early twenties. The mother was not trying to shoo her children from the room. It was obvious they knew what mom did for a living, so I began to talk to all of them.
I told them I had come to this house because I knew that this family need to know Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior. The children nodded confessing with the looks on their faces that they knew Christ was not in this home. The father however, looked at me and told me that this was a Christian home and they all loved the Lord.
I looked at the man and told him he was a liar. I explained that no one can love the Lord and send their wife out to sell her body that was made in the image of God and given to him as a gift from the King of Kings and Lord of Lords. I opened by my bible to 1John chapter 2 and read from verse 3-6 where it says,
“Now by this we know that we know Him, if we keep His commandments. He who says, “I know Him,” and does not keep His commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him. But whoever keeps His word, truly the love of God is perfected in him. By this we know that we are in Him. He who says he abides in Him ought himself also to walk just as He walked.”
I then said, “Look at that, God is calling you a liar too!”
Christy and I sat and talked to them for a while and then the wife, seeing that her husband was not listening, asked us to leave. I asked if we could return again and they all said yes. The wife then walked us to the car.
I walked to the car a little disheartened by all I had seen, but I hoped that the gospel message would penetrate their hearts. I believed that the kids had listened and it looked like the wife was listening. That is until we got to the car. She asked me if I would drive her back to the brothels. I told her no!
I intend to still visit them and I intend to continue to pray for this family, but some days you just have to know that when you present someone with the Gospel of Jesus Christ, you have given them the most valuable gift on earth and if they reject that gift, there is no hope for them.
“ The one who listens to you listens to Me, and the one who rejects you rejects Me; and he who rejects Me rejects the One who sent Me.” Luke 10:16