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Prayer Warriors, I Need You. Right Now.

Tonight, my teammate and I were headed back to our hostel after wifi and tea and we hopped in the back of what we call a “tuk-truck”, the cheapest and easiest form of public transportation here in Pattaya. We stood on the outside because it was already pretty full, mostly of middle aged men. It was the cute little blonde girl in the yellow poncho that caught my eye. She was sitting in the lap of a man I assumed was her father, one of the three European men travelling together with the little girl. As I noticed the lack of a mom or wife that belonged to this group or family, I started to feel uneasy. That uneasiness only intensified when one of the men gestured for me to come sit in his lap, offering me the option to sit instead of stand. No longer did this register as an innocent family vacation. Afraid of the worst-case-scenario, I began to pray silently and plead with the Father to station angels around this little girl, to protect her, to uphold her. I prayed for the hearts of the men and asked the Lord to seek and find purity and good-intent in them. About 5 minutes into the ride, another man on the tuk-truck seated next to her (not with the European party) began to reach his hand around the shoulder of his friend to touch the little girl’s cheek. I just about lost it. Righteous anger and the need to protect began to stir within me as the three men did nothing to stop it. Moments shy of me climbing into the middle of the moving tuk-truck myself to tell him to cut it out, one of the men swats his hand away. My prayers became fervent and desperate. Something in my spirit became anxious and acutely aware to the situation. Something here was not right.

All 6 of us- the three men, the little girl, my teammate, and I- got off at the same stop but proceeded to walk in opposite directions. My teammate and I began to verbally process what we just saw and how we were feeling about. As I began to work through it all there were pieces of it that didn’t naturally fall together. My heart became troubled as I considered how strange it would be for a father to bring his young daughter on a trip with his two male friends to Pattaya, Thailand of all places. (PSA: This city isn’t exactly a “kid-friendly” family vacation destination.) And that’s a big IF that was his daughter. That would be the best-case scenario. But it didn’t feel right. Overcome by the terror of my next few thoughts, I all but doubled over on the wet pavement and began to weep. My prayers shifted from well thought out phrases to desperate pleas of “oh Father, have mercy” between the gasps and painful sobs. My teammate, Jackie, grabbed my hand tightly and pulled me into her side.

For the remaining 20 minutes of the walk to our hostel, I was beside myself. My heart hurt. My soul ached. My pleas felt ineffective. I wrestled with the fact that the Lord allowed me to see these things, knowing I would walk away and not be able to do anything about it- not physically, anyway. My overwhelming sorrow reminded me of the desperation in Mordecai’s actions in Esther 4 after learning of the king of Xerxes’ allowance of Haman’s proposition to “destroy the Jewish people” (Esther 3). When Mordecai had learned of all that had been done, he tore his clothes, put on sackcloth and ashes, and went out into the city, wailing loudly and bitterly. Esther 4:1-2. My heart panged with only but a fraction of the “great mourning among the Jews” that was followed by fasting, weeping, and wailing (v.3). My mind raced through what my next actions would be as I considered desperate fasting, painful intercession, and the involvement of the Church.

I believe that God sees the future and holds it in his hands, but allows the prayers of his people to play a role in determining pieces of it. I could hear the voice of the Lord calling me to prayer, willing me to intercede, encouraging me to engage the Church. That’s why this blog is being written at 1:00am from my bunk bed. My friends, I need you. I need you to stand beside me and earnestly lift up the soul, well-being, life, and light of this little girl. I don’t know her name or where she comes from, but she is undoubtedly known and intricately created by the Father, her name written in the records of Heaven. My God knows her name. My God sees her. My God has the power to step in and move mountains. My God can rescue and redeem any person from any circumstance at any time. In the helplessness of “I don’t know what I could have done differently to help and I don’t know what power I have to do anything about it now”, the Holy Spirit steps in and reminds me that the same power that raised Christ from the dead dwells inside of me (Romans 8:11). The power that enables the blind to see, the lame to walk, and the broken to be restored can be activated within me, and you, by simply asking the Lord to make it so. The enemy’s attempts to bring me into dismay are directly deflected by a truth found in the beautiful words of Jesus: “Truly I tell you that if two of you on earth agree about anything they ask for, it will be done for them by my Father in heaven. For where two or more gather in my name, there am I with them” Matthew 20:19-20. Friends, agree with me in approaching the throne of the living God and pleading with him to break the atrocious chains of sexual perversion and abuse that runs rampant in the darkness of this world. Gather with me and will the Spirit of the Lord to surround and protect that little girl. Join me in fervent prayer for the hideous yet booming success of sex tourism in Thailand. Let us envision and yearn for the day our brothers and sisters are no longer objectified for selfish, sinful gain. Our pleas are heard and taken into account by our holy, loving, compassionate, all powerful, almighty Creator God. In desperation, as if the souls of many weigh on our prayers, let us approach the Father and lay our requests at his feet. The souls of many do in fact weigh on our prayers. Our attitudes and posture towards prayer should be affected by that.


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