Explore
Follow Us

If your heart could scream

Tiffany Berkowitz will be a published author and ministry leader one day. Right now (at 22 yrs old, I think) she leads a WR team in Thailand. This blog post of hers is representative of the gift that God has given her.   For about 12 dollars, I could purchase my favorite Starbucks drink…
By Seth Barnes
By Seth Barnes
Tiffany Berkowitz will be a published author and ministry leader one day. Right now (at 22 yrs old, I think) she leads a WR team in Thailand. This blog post of hers is representative of the gift that God has given her.
 
For about 12 dollars, I could purchase my favorite
Starbucks drink and a delicious pastry to go along with it, or I could
pay for an entire night with a Thai woman. Lining the streets are
petite, beautiful women and gorgeous Lady-boys holding signs for the
“specials” they have going on that
night. I make extra effort to smile at each one of them as the women
smile back bashfully and the Lady-boys wave flamboyantly.
 
I am
intentional about seeking eye contact with the American and European men
that walk by, but their heads are hung so low or they are so fixated on
the eye-candy before them, it’s almost like our line of vision is
blocked by opposing magnets. They rarely look at white girls. I wonder
if it is because they are full of shame. I wonder if they even care. I
am so full of anger. God always reminds me that they are hurting,
broken, and in bondage. I wonder what brought them here. I wonder if
they’re satisfied. I know they’re not, but how do I tell a man that is
seeking pleasure that “God loves you”… it just seems to lose its
luster when I’m face-to-face with a drunk guy from California that’s
just looking for a good time.
 
And the women… my heart stops beating
when I think about them. I remind myself to look for the light in the
midst of the darkness, but the darkness that they face is so much
thicker than anything I’ve ever known before. How do I love them when I
have no idea what they endure day in and day out?

This
world is broken. My heart shatters at the sound of a mothers plea for
food for her starving child. It crumbles when I glance at the 12 year
old girl sitting on the side of the street alone with fear in her eyes
because she knows very well what tonight has in store for her. It weeps
with the heart of God. Sometimes, all I can do is sit in my heavenly
fathers lap and weep.

Emmi grew up
in a village in Thailand. Little girls in these villages are at
high-risk for sex trafficking. Men come in and purchase them from their
families, promising them that their daughters will have a job and bring
money back. So when she was born, her family believed she
brought a curse upon them because she was not a boy. When she was a
young child, her father walked in on her mother conversing with another
man in their living room, he acted without a second thought, and
beheaded Emmi’s mother before her little eyes. He was soon approached by
his mother-in-law who informed him that the man was a cousin that had
come to visit, and that he had made a tragic mistake, to say the least.
He turned himself in and spent years in prison. Emmi was sent to an
orphanage, and soon after, watched her best friend die of AIDS because
she had been sold as a sex slave as a child. After years of bitterness,
the Lord touched her heart, and she was able to extend miraculous grace
and forgiveness to her father.

Now,
she runs Lighthouse Ministries in Chiang Mai. This place is a beacon of
light in the midst of the darkness. It is hope in the land of
hopelessness. It is a land of peace, a place of redemption. Stories like
Emmi’s, and places like Lighthouse and Wongen Kafe… are the things
that we have to cling to. There is light here. There is hope here.

Thailand celebrates Loi Krathong- Festival of Lights- while we are here. I know it means something
very different to them, but I believe that it’s not far off from what
God is truly doing. It is traditionally a time when Thais give thanks,
forgive grievances and pray for good luck. They send lights down the
river, and release them up into the sky. It’s really quite beautiful.
 
That’s what we came here to do, too. We have come to thank the Lord for
what He is already doing here, and to delight in the beauty of His
victory over darkness. We have come to weep and pray for forgiveness for
the ways that we have allowed the darkness to run rampant. We have come
to bring light, to release hope. The presence of God dwells in us. THAT
is hope.

All is not lost, but we
have to do something. You have to do something. We… no… YOU do not
have enough time to waste. You are loved by the King of the universe.
Let that be your motivation to be love to those who have never known it
before. Let that be your drive in loving those that are difficult to
love. That is where the hope lies. What is the story of the man that
sits outside of that one gas station every day? Do you know? What about
the single mom in the apartment next door? Have you even spoken to her
other than that time that her car was parked in your spot? What about
your mother? Your father?
 

Wake up.

Please, wake up!
 
Our team of missionaries to the sex trade in Phnom Pennh is going to make a difference, one at a time. Please get in touch with me if you want to help rescue the bar girls and stop the sex trade. 

Comments (8)

  • Tiffany, my heart does scream for these children who are being exploited for the pleasures of men. What can I do to help besides pray for your team and other teams that have gone before you and those that follow? Your blog is well written…I felt like I am there with you, witnessing this struggle between good and evil! Thank you for sharing your story! More importantly, thank you for serving in the field. May the Lord bless you and your team…

  • The overwhelming sadness of this sordid world is made more hopeful by divinely directed storytelling. Thank you for caring.

  • Retired V N veteran, wondering how i might hwlp and whwre i would find out more about your organization

  • My friend in Northern Virginia sent me your blog on facebook … An excellent read … and a challenge to do something about it. My husband and I just moved to Bangkok and will live here for three years. We work at the US Embassy. Your blog is insightful. I’ve written a children’s book that is a prayer for children around the world. It’s written as a child praying through scripture and reveals the plan of salvation. My plan is to have it translated into Thai and a % could go to a ministry here to help these women / children. I think it will be easy to get it translated and am keeping my eyes open for a publisher here. That is my prayer. Not sure if or how God wants to use it … but it’s available.

Comments are closed.

Subscribe to Radical Living:

Receive updates on the latest posts as Seth Barnes covers many topics like spiritual formation, what if means to be a christian, how to pray, and more. Radical Living blog is all about a call to excellence in ministry, church, and leadership -as the hands and feet of Jesus.

Seth Barnes

I'm motivated to join God in his global reclamation project. He's on the move, setting his sons and daughters free from their places of captivity. And he's partnering with those of us who have been freed to go and free others.



© Adventures In Missions. All rights reserved. Privacy Policy