By Heidi Deibert
He said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore, I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong.
–2 Corinthians 12:9-10 (ESV)
Fear would be a fair word to describe the pit in my stomach when I thought about the commitment I made to deliver gift bags to women in strip clubs and massage parlors. I had spent much time praying about whether or not God was asking me to commit my time to Just Love and while I was pretty certain it was His nudging that I felt, I was captivated by fear.
You see, much of my story is intertwined with finding my value in physical appearance and being sought after for outward rather than inward beauty. Therefore, I doubted how I might handle being inundated by the temptations of this industry. I was attempting to gauge whether for me this outreach would be an opportunity for good or evil. Would my heart break for these women or would I be drawn into the same deception of Satan’s lies about beauty?
Either way, I was getting a multitude of emails telling me how the night would go, who the delivery teams consisted of, and all of the logistics of how the outreach would unfold. One would think that this sense of control – knowing what to expect – might have alleviated the anxiety. Not for me. Maybe that was because it was so out of my control and God wanted me to be sure of that. He would do and had been doing all of the work in these women’s hearts. He was drawing them near to Himself already. He was pursuing them already. And the beauty of it all is that while He absolutely did not need me to accomplish any of the work He had in mind, He invited me to be a part.
I attended the prayer meeting which preceded the delivery outreach. It was in those moments of prayer, I felt God quietly calling me to go. One of the team members read 2 Corinthians 12:9-10 aloud. It was as if God was saying, “Don’t you trust me to be bigger than this? It is in weakness that my power is made perfect! Trust me and let me show you that perfect power.”
So I went. When we walked into the strip club, God showed me that power. I felt like a barrier of light was protecting my heart and mind as I walked through the darkness (both figuratively and literally). When I walked into the dressing room, I felt surprisingly comfortable. The images I have in my mind are not those of the faces or figures of the women that I saw but instead the hearts that I connected with. The Lord even gave me a deep compassion for the men that I saw inside. God sparked an energy within me that affirmed my love and passion for this industry. He made His power perfect in my deepest weakness. He reminded me that it was about Him and not me. I feel ecstatic to serve such a faithful and healing God!