I met Elizabeth 2 years ago. I began engaging right away as I saw a deep desire to want to know the Lord. However, Elizabeth had severe trauma that prevented her from moving forward. Ten months ago, Elizabeth was pushed to the brink of pain and trauma, which caused her to return to familiar coping skills. After traveling all over the US trying to survive, Elizabeth had landed herself in Las Vegas, where she had been working to survive. I reached out to her to see if we could connect as I knew that I would be heading to Vegas for a business trip. She desperately agreed and stated, "Yes, come find me on the strip and slap some sense into me." So I flew down to meet her. After lunch, she shared that she had recently escaped an abusive relationship after holding a gun to her head. She shared some of the traumatic things she had been witnessing on the streets of Vegas after dark; girls being kidnapped and never seen again. She shared that there had to be a reason she was still alive. I told her the reason was God's desire for a relationship and purpose for her.
We discussed some options and resources she could access to get stabilized and out of her situation. She then asked why I would come to Vegas to meet with her if I wasn't getting paid. Every relationship she has ever had has been transactional, and for her, it didn't make sense why someone would be there for her with no strings attached. I continued to tell her that money has nothing to do with it and that she is so valuable. I spoke words of life over her, declaring that she is worth so much more than this, deserves more than this, and is capable of more than this. I told her that my love and care for her are unconditional. She asked if I was mad at her for the mess that she got herself into or if I was disappointed. I told her "no" and that there was nothing she could do that would make me not love her as much as I do. It was a real-life expression of the Father's unconditional love for His prodigal child and demonstrated how He leaves the 99 to go after the one. She shared with tear-filled eyes that she had never had anyone love her or care about her like this.
She had tried and failed many times to get out of her lifestyle. So I shared Proverbs 24:16, which says, "For the righteous falls seven times and rises again, but the wicked stumble in times of calamity." I told her that it's not a matter of how many times she's failed but, more importantly, she gets back up again. After some more conversation and hugs, we prayed that God would give her the strength, wisdom, and opportunity to get out of Vegas and get back up again.
The following day Elizabeth called me to tell me that she had left Vegas and was ready for something new. She wanted to get help but didn't have anywhere to go, and she asked if I could help her. After praying and talking with our Light of Love team, we came up with a plan and resources to help. Three days later, Elizabeth was on a plane to Seattle. I picked her up from the airport and took her to a safe location where she stayed with a support team while she detoxed off drugs and alcohol. Even in her detoxing time, she woke up ready to read the Bible and pray with the team every morning. Nine days later, Elizabeth checked herself into a hospital to get more professional help - reciting Proverbs 24:16.