Tag Archive | Rahab

Rahab Gets Married

rings“As God by creation made two of one, so again by marriage He made one of two.” ~ Thomas Adam

For those of you who have followed my Rahab series over the last two years, I have some exciting news! Hint – It’s in the title of this post. 😉 Yes, the lovely young woman referred to in these posts has gotten hitched.

This is significant because it represents a total separation from her past. As a woman who was forced to sell her body (by her own parents no less), she did not even dare to dream she would ever get out of her old life. She had resigned herself to the idea that she would have to endure her “profession” until she became too old to continue attracting clients. She often worried how she would support herself when that day finally came. The idea of marriage was so far beyond her realm of possibilities that she couldn’t even entertain the idea.

Starting when she was very young her father told her repeatedly that as a member of his family she belonged to him and had no choice but to do as he told her. He said, “Until you have a family of your own, you belong to me. And no one will ever marry someone as filthy and used up as you are. You will never find a man who is willing to marry someone like you.” He was the reason she became “filthy and used up”, but yet used that as the rationale that no one would ever marry her and that she was doomed to always be his property to be rented out as he pleased.

But God!

Oh how God can take all of man’s plans and turn them on their head! When the world saw someone who was filthy and used up, God saw a woman to be redeemed! Jesus Christ is still in the business of cleansing and making new! He took a woman of ill repute and completely turned her life around! She now knows the Lord; she has been delivered from her life of degradation, and filled with His Spirit.

God has seen fit to give her a godly man as a husband. Even by her father’s twisted justification, she is free from him by virtue of having been married. The thing she never thought possible has come to pass by way of Jesus Christ. God took a terrible circumstance and used it for both her and her new husband’s good. They met through a series of cruel tricks by both his parents and hers. He never saw the deception coming, fell right into their trap, and committed a serious mistake. By all outward appearances this should have ended very very badly.

But God!

This man repented of his sin, and became a representation of Christ to this woman who was so desperately lost in darkness. He modeled love. She was filled with anger and bitterness. She fought back at him with sharp words and a hateful attitude. He kept reaching out in the love of Christ. He ignored her hurtful behavior. Through every angry word and difficult encounter he continued to show godly love in a way that she had never seen. In fact, she had never experienced any kind of love at all. Not from friends. Not from men. Not from family members. Not even her own parents.

But God!

God used this man to show real love. And real love prevailed. Through it all God kept reaching for her. He did a miracle in her life. She surrendered to Him and it changed everything.

Her faith in Him is incredible. I have seen her grow in spiritual maturity so quickly. Her prayers are deep and strong. Her level of commitment is rare among Christians. She has already become a role model for the women in her church. She is a woman who knows what God has done for her.

There is no greater freedom than that of living for Jesus Christ!

Congratulations, Rahab. May your marriage be as strong and resilient as you have been. May the goodness and mercy of the Lord follow you both all the days of your lives. May you and your husband be blessed with a love that grows stronger every day and moves you ever closer to the Lord.

In His Love,
Rebekah L.

More in the Rahab Series:

Being Rahab (Part 1)

Revisiting Rahab (Part 2)

The Faith of Rahab (Part 3)

Praying with Rahab (Part 4)

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Be Afraid and do it Anyway

Overcoming Fear

For the last couple of years I have had recurring dreams of the same person. The dreams themselves are different every time, it’s just that this particular person happens to show up in them from time to time. It is someone I do not know in my waking life and usually when I dream of him, he has an important message to share with me or to help me understand something. I’ve come to refer to him as my “teacher” because that is the role that I most often relate to him in these dreams.

A few weeks ago I had a dream where he came to me and told me that God had a specific task for me to complete and that I was hesitating to do it. As if that wasn’t convicting enough he said, “You move in fear instead of love.” Ouch! I could not refute his claims. How often have we let fear be a motivating factor in how we act (or in what we avoid) rather than love?

I knew exactly what he was referring to. If you’ve read any of the Being Rahab series, you know that I am in contact with a woman who lives on the other side of the globe from me. Recently, she had some questions that she only felt comfortable talking to me about. She suggested doing a video chat. This is a simple solution to the problem of living so far apart and not being able to meet in person. A phone call isn’t ideal because there is a bit of a language barrier between us so we often need the help of facial expressions and hand gestures to communicate. Video was the best alternative. For me however, this was a terrifying request. The thought of being on the internet like that nearly sent me into a full blown panic. Just the thought of doing it, never mind actually going through with it.

This may come as a surprise to many of our readers since you know that I have been putting my posts on the internet for at least two years now. There is a big difference between putting words on a screen and putting your face out there. Where I could be seen. And heard. Even recognized. Or recorded. Especially recorded. You’ve never seen my face on this blog and I don’t even use my real name so making the shift to a video chat was a giant leap for me. Giant. Did I think my friend was planning to record me? No. Or worse, planning to distribute the video out into the world? Of course not. But I am paranoid and I don’t trust technology and frankly the whole idea is horrifying to me.

This paranoia is not completely without justification. I know what it is like to be involuntarily recorded. I know what it feels like to not have any control over that and to not be able to retrieve the recordings. I know the haunting fear that one day those recordings will resurface. I never want to be in that situation again so I have spent years avoiding technology that might take pictures or videos and transmit them somewhere.

But then there’s this woman half a world away. She has questions about the Lord and the church and salvation. She has past issues she needs help working through. She has fears and she needs someone to reassure her that the Lord is her shield and buckler. She needs someone to confirm that Jesus is a healer. And she wants to talk to me. Only to me.

I wanted so much to help her, but I honestly didn’t think I could get over my debilitating fear in order to do it. How could I possibly allow myself to be seen on video? The thought was unbearable.

But then I had a dream. My “teacher” came and told me that I needed to demonstrate my burden. He invited me to demonstrate my love for the Lord and for the souls I cry out for.

He asked me, “Do you love Him enough to leave your fear behind?” I could not answer the question. So he told me that God would be with me and that my calling required a giving up of self and a constant overcoming of fear.

He asked me again, “Do you love Him enough to put your own fear aside?”

Again, I could not answer him.

“Do you love Him?”

I answered with a resounding, “Yes!”

He said, “If you love Him, but cannot put your fear aside, then be afraid and do it anyway.

With that, he walked away and the dream ended. When I woke up, I knew I had to do the video chat. I didn’t know how I was going to do it, but I knew that I could. Despite my fear, I had to move in love. I had to reach out to a woman thousands of miles away in a way that was utterly terrifying to me because it was what she needed. I had to put myself aside. I had to be afraid and do it anyway.

And you know what? I did it. Through the Lord, by the Lord, with the Lord, He helped me do it. It was not easy. It took a lot of prayer. I admit I cried and threw up before the video chat started. But when the switch was flipped and there she was on a screen across from me, Jesus helped me to move in love instead of fear. As far as I know, she had no knowledge of how difficult it was for me. And God accomplished something amazing in that conversation. Two women a world apart and He helped us both overcome that day!

I often think that God has to remove a fear before I can be free to act, but I have learned through this situation that sometimes God moves in the fear. He doesn’t always take the fear away first. You have to be willing to say that your love for Him and your love for souls is more important than the fear you are feeling.

When I feel God leading me to do something that feels scary, I have a new motto: Be afraid and do it anyway.

Dear Readers: May the Lord help you to walk in love instead of fear. May you never shy away from His bidding because of fear. May you overcome by facing that fear and doing the very thing that you are afraid of.

In His Love,

Rebekah L.

Praying with Rahab

Today’s post is a continuation of the Being Rahab series. If you aren’t familiar with these posts, I encourage you to read parts 1, 2, and 3 by following the links.

I began the first post on this topic by discussing a woman who was forced into prostitution at a young age by her own family. At the time, it was my prayer that she would be like Rahab; a person with a questionable past, but an honorable future. I requested that our readers pray for her that she would have the faith of Rahab to believe God and allow Him to transform her life.

God has answered these prayers in an amazing way. She now regularly attends church, has thrown out all her former idols, has stopped worshipping at Buddhist temples, has committed her life to Christ and been baptized in His name. Truthfully, she is so far removed from her degrading past that I don’t really even like using the word Rahab in the title of these posts anymore. It was difficult for me to include it on the last update, and even more difficult on this one. Even though this is an anonymous blog that she knows nothing about, I feel she deserves better than to be identified by her past rather than by the incredible future that God is building in her. Yet, for the sake of continuity so that our readers are able to recognize and follow her story, I will continue to use it for now.

Recently, I have had the opportunity to pray with this woman a few times. She lives on the other side of the globe from me, but with modern technology she is only a click away and we’ve been able to video chat and pray together that way. Think about that for a minute, we are literally a few clicks away from evangelizing the world! Satan uses technology to put all kinds filth on the airways, violence in the media, and pornography at our fingertips, but we have the power to take technology and use it for good. Use it to witness to someone, use it to reach out and evangelize places you can’t physically get to. Use it for creating worship songs and Bible Studies. Use it for God! But I digress.

This woman has poured her heart out to me in video chat. I’ve been able to tell her what God has done in my own life and then to pray with her about her hopes, her fears, her past traumas, and I’ve been able to feel the burden lifting off of her as we pray. If you had told me a year ago that I would be having these conversations with her, I would have thought you were crazy. Even just a few months ago I would have thought it was impossible. Nothing is impossible to God! Nothing!

If I had stayed angry with her, if I had allowed my own hurt and bitterness to get in the way, I would have missed out on the incredible blessing that she is now bringing to my life. She is a remarkable woman who is learning to pray to the One True God. She is learning to trust in the Almighty. She is giving her life to the Savior. And I am being allowed to witness it. Truly truly humbling.

If you are having trouble forgiving someone I encourage you to ask your heavenly Father to give you a genuine love of God for that person. Ask Him to help you allow a love of God to grow in your heart. He may answer that prayer in the most unexpected and beautiful of ways.

If you pray for that person, you may find one day you are praying with them!

In His Love,
Rebekah L.

The Faith of Rahab

“…choose you this day whom ye will serve; whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the flood, or the gods of the Amorites in whose land ye dwell: but as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.” -Joshua 24:15

For those of you who have been following my Rahab posts I have more exciting news to share. I continue to be awed and amazed at the wonderful work the Lord is doing in this young woman’s life. If you have not been following along I highly encourage you to read Being Rahab and Revisiting Rahab to get the back story on today’s post.

I mentioned in Revisiting Rahab that the young woman the posts were written about had just attended her first Christian church service. I’m so happy to be able to let all of our readers know that she has faithfully been attending church since that first visit a couple of months ago. Last Sunday her journey to God took a giant leap forward; she was baptized! She lives in a crowded East Asian city where there aren’t any large bodies of water or baptismal tanks nearby so her pastor arranged for her to be baptized in the pool at a nearby hotel. God will always find a way when a soul is hungry!

Her pastor talked with her to make sure she really understood what it meant to be baptized and to be certain that she truly wanted to be a Christian. He told her that when she repents and gets baptized all of her sins would be washed away. When he told her that, tears began streaming down her face. Her pastor’s wife told her that there was no need to cry; she should be happy. This young woman’s pastor and his wife do not yet know about her past. If they knew, they would understand why the thought of all her sins washing away would cause her to cry. I can only imagine the weight that was being lifted off of her in that moment.

This woman’s pastor asked her, “Do you believe God forgives?” I am amazed and humbled by the response she gave. She said, “Yes. Because [Rebekah L] forgave me. When [Rebekah L] told me she forgave me, I knew that forgiveness is real. No one would blame her if she hated me, but she forgave me and prayed for me. She also explained to me how she was forgiven by God and how God helped her to forgive others. She explained that it was all possible because of Jesus. I want what [Rebekah L] has.”

This has touched me in a very deep place. That day in her apartment when I extended forgiveness to her was one of the most difficult days I have been through. It was not easy and it was only through the power of God that I was able to get to a place where I could utter those words. It is truly humbling to see the effect they had on her.

This woman lives in a predominantly Buddhist area of the world and she has grown up in that tradition. Additionally, she was raised in a culture that values familial piety over almost anything else. For her to be willing to walk away from the tradition of her ancestors is huge. After getting baptized she told her daughter’s father to throw away all of the idols in her home. She said, “Take them all away, don’t leave any here, there is only one God that is going to live in this house from now on”.

I am blessed to have met you, Rahab. I am so excited about what God is doing in your life. We serve a wonderful God.

In His Love,
Rebekah L

Revisiting Rahab

Hope in ChristBy far the post on Being Rebekah that has received the most views was a post called Being Rahab. Over a third of the views for all of our posts combined are for this one post. I believe there is a divine reason for that. At the end of that post I asked our readers to pray for the young woman the post was written about. If only a tiny fraction of our readers whispered a prayer for her, there have still been hundreds of prayers that have gone up with her in mind. That is a miracle in and of itself. Today, I have an exciting update to share with you all. I believe the combined prayers of many people have had a hand in the mighty move of God that is occurring in her life. If you have not read the original post, I encourage you to read it here so that you can share in magnifying the Lord with me.

Last week I had the opportunity to travel to the country where this woman lives and got to spend some time with her. It was a very difficult meeting at first because of the history between us. A couple of years ago she hurt me very badly by getting in the middle of, and effectively ending, the relationship I had with someone I had assumed I would marry. During this meeting with her she shared some information with me that made me realize the guy I was with, although not completely innocent, had much less control over the situation than I thought. I already knew that he had been tricked and that he had fallen into a trap of the enemy, but I didn’t know that he had so little control over the events and that his attempts to stop it from happening were ignored.

I found myself crumpled on the bathroom floor crying afresh over everything that had happened. I was very angry with her and it was only after I called upon the Lord that He began to give me a new perspective on things. He helped me to see things from her point of view. He reminded me of the unbelievable pain and abuse she has suffered in her life. Those early years in her life clouded her judgment on everything and led her down a path of unbelievable degradation. While I cried on the bathroom floor, the Lord brought healing to my heart and renewed my compassion for her. I prayed that God would meet her there and that somehow she would be saved.

Afterwards we had an amazing conversation where I was able to tell her that I forgive her and to share with her the amazing forgiveness of the Lord. I even had an opportunity to pray for her. While she doesn’t know the Lord, I am sure that she must have felt His presence in the room while I prayed. She thanked me before I left.

Now for the really good news. On Sunday, for the first time ever, she went to church! She lives in a predominantly Buddhist/Taoist area of the world and has been deeply entrenched in that tradition. She has many idols in her home, but something in her is hungry for the One True God! She wants to be set free from the bondage she has been in all her life. She took a chance that Jesus Christ is real and despite all her fear, she went to a Christian church! God touched her there. She even went to the altar and cried out to the Lord, asking for His forgiveness and she prayed, “If you are the real God, please help me.” We serve a wonderfully loving and compassionate God so I know He will not ignore this sincere prayer.

I praise the Lord for His goodness!! He is a mighty God who is able to break the barriers of tradition, culture, language, past hurts, resentments, fear, abuses, and sin to reach a soul. His love never fails! He never stops reaching for the lost.

Please continue to pray with me that this woman will come to truly know the Lord for herself. Pray that she will be saved and that her life will be transformed by the power of Jesus Christ. He is able!

In His Love,
Rebekah L.

**There’s a Part III! Read the followup to this story at: The Faith of Rahab!!

Being Rahab

Okay, I know what you’re thinking; “you mean the prostitute?” Yeah, I mean the prostitute. I’m certainly not suggesting we should be like Rahab in that sense (God forbid!) any more than I think we should be like Rebekah in the sense that she deceived her husband. Nevertheless the story of Rahab is a powerful story of faith. It was through faith in the God of the Israelites that Rahab was saved, much like our faith saves us today. It is worth noting that although Rahab had prostitution in her past; the Bible seems to indicate that she did not in fact remain a prostitute. That is a powerful testimony to the goodness and mercy of the Lord and the transformation possible when we come to know Him!

Joshua 2

If you aren’t familiar with the story, two Israelites were sent to Jericho to spy out the land. They end up at the house of Rahab, a Canaanite prostitute. When the king of Jericho learns there are spies in the land he sends orders to Rahab to send the men out. She hides the two Israelites and says that the men came to her house earlier, but they have already left. She betrayed her own people. The Israelites were there with the intention of taking the land and she knew that. She could have stopped them, but instead she protected them. Why did she do that? Joshua 2:10-11 gives us the answer; she had heard how the Lord had dried up the Red Sea when they escaped Egypt and she had heard of other things the Lord had done in their midst.  And she believed it!

She knew the Lord had given them that land so she acted according to God’s will. The remarkable thing is that the Israelites themselves had heard what God did for them at the Red Sea and many of them were eye witnesses to some of the other miracles performed in their midst and yet so many of them still lacked the faith to act. Rahab was not even one of them. She had never witnessed any of the miracles of God and yet she acted on faith! She made the men swear if they took the land that they would save her and her family (Joshua 2:12-13). She believed God for what He had done in the past and she believed Him for what He would do in the future. She even had faith for her entire family!

A lowly prostitute and her family were saved because she believed God.  She is even named among the heroes of faith in Hebrews 11:31. Amazingly, she was apparently accepted by the Israelites and according to the Talmud even married an Israelite. She is listed in Matthew 1:5 as being part of the genealogy of Jesus! Yes, you read that right, our sinless Savior came into this world through the lineage of a prostitute.

There is no one who is beyond the reach of God. He is able to use and transform any one of us! 

I know of someone, who like Rahab, was caught up in prostitution. As a young girl she was forced into it by her own family. Her father allowed a man to rape her as a child while he was present in the home. For money. Her father proceeded to make many such arrangements over the years for his daughter. Teaching her what men like, what they expect; how she should act, what she should wear, what she should say. He used her for profit. Her own father. The man who was supposed to protect and care for her.

I spent a lot of energy disliking her before I learned of her past. To me, she was the one who destroyed my future. I had this picture in my head of how things would go in my life and she came along and tore my little picture to shreds. Now that I understand more about where she comes from my heart is filled with compassion for her. We are called to love everyone. It is so easy to judge people for their wrong doings without understanding the evil influences that befall them.

My heart breaks for what she has been through. How does a person like this learn what it is to feel loved and cherished? But she has someone in her life now that knows the Lord. This person has gone out of their way to show her the love of God. It is my prayer that she would be like Rahab; a person with a questionable past, but an honorable future. I pray that she will have the faith of Rahab to believe God and allow Him to transform her life. Can you believe God with me? Will you pray for this young woman with me?

Dear Readers, Let us have faith like Rahab. Let us believe the report of the Lord and like Rahab act according to God’s will. Let us pray for all the Rahabs out there who carry pain or walk in sin and let us believe God to lift them out of darkness into His marvelous light!

In His Love,

Rebekah L

This is not the end! God is amazing- read the follow up at: Revisiting Rahab and The Faith of Rahab.