I am going to attempt to explain my feelings over the past day. Wow. Broken. Completely heart broken. Heaviness.
Last night we went to "Walking Street" which is one of the main strips in Pattaya. I was with one local girl (from the Tamar Center) and our goal was to invite girls to English classes, hang out, and talk with hoping to reveal Jesus to them. I don't know what to say. This was the hardest hour of my life. As soon as we got out of the taxi we were immediately bombarded with flyers (porn) and being invited to an array of sexual shows. Girls/prostitutes everywhere. Sleezy men everywhere. I knew this went on but I have never in my life experienced anything remotely close to what I saw. We made our way to one bar to sit and get a drink (coke of course). In this one bar there had to be over 100 prostitutes. Precious, beautiful girls. I began playing Connect4 (I know, wierd?) with one of the girls while my translater talked. I was trying to take in my surroundings. There were girls that couldn't be more than 15 years old all the way up to 50. Since it was early the bars were not busy at this time. The girls were doing their makeup, being completely normal until a guy would walk by. The whole bar would errupt with the girls calling men into the bar. Money, its all for money. For survival. They're not sluts. They believe it is the only way to provide for their family. I saw how beautiful each individual was. How this life isn't their desire. I saw innocent individuals whose eyes were filled with pain and hunger for something more. And don't even get me started on the men.
So, as I was sitting there I found myself struggling to hold back tears. I have NEVER in my life felt such heaviness and brokeness. My eyes were stinging, filled with tears for these girls and this lifestyle. Darkness. A feeling so overwhelming. A feeling I've never felt before. I couldn't shake it, and I still can't. We left and the tears starting pouring. They continued most of the night. I know this is just a taste of God's heart.
My struggle while being here is going to be focusing on the light. How do I see light here? All I saw yesterday was darkness. I'm trying to see God moving. What do I do with this feeling I have? I am reminded that I am the light. But, is my light big enough? I don't know. I don't know how God will use me here. But, I want to be used. I want to be the light in this city. I cannot dwell on the darkness. I am clinging to Jesus with everything in me. Pray for this city. Pray that I can see the light outweighing the dark.