We have this as a sure and steadfast anchor of the soul, a hope that enters into the inner place behind the curtain, where Jesus has gone as a forerunner on our behalf… Hebrews 6:19-20a
Like a belayer at the bottom of the rope looking up at the climber, we see the progress and the potential of every climber at DuHope. Sometimes the climbers can’t see it, because they fear looking down. There is the fear that the rope and anchor won’t hold them if they slip, or the fear of defeat and utter failure. But as we continue to belay them on, we see the progress, the potential in each person and God working in their lives (even when they don’t recognize it is Him).
One of our climbers from DuHope was recently kicked out of her house. The situation seemed dim. We had hoped this would keep her from engaging in prostitution, because she no longer had a home for men to come to. But she was sleeping in her neighbor’s house and was often kicked out of the bed, because it was being rented out for prostitution. Often she was told to go to the streets and make money. Usually after a full day working at DuHope, she’d end up sleeping outside and not obtain much sleep at all. Her child was coming to DuHope with rashes on her arm. She was being pushed into urine from bed wetting by other kids when sleeping on the floor while her mother was outside.
So how was anything miraculous happening in these dark circumstances? How could we see hope?
She shared these tough conditions with the women at DuHope during Bible study. In order for her to move to another house and neighborhood, she needed a large amount to get started. God had a solution but it would require self-sacrifice. Each week the women contribute to an informal savings group and on rotation receive funds to pay for big expenses such as school fees and health emergencies. It wasn’t her turn to receive the funds. The woman who was to receive funds that week remained quiet as the other women quarreled – they all agreed it should go to help this mom move.
The woman who was scheduled to receive the funds then spoke up. She gave up her rotation when she really needed money, as her children had been kicked out of school since she had not yet paid their tuition for that term. She was willing to show compassion, sacrificing her needs on behalf of another. They ended the Bible study holding hands and praying that God would help them to love each other deeply.
So while the climb sometimes seems impossible for these women to keep climbing, we cheer them on to keep going as they learn to trust the anchor who is holding them securely, even if they slip and fall. While many say they do not yet believe Jesus is their anchor, we are seeing progress such as the women caring for one another. We also see some are sharing God’s Word with their neighbors, some ask in prayer to have an intimate relationship with Jesus and others are on their way to believing in Him. As they climb together, they are learning what it means to trust God as they put into practice His commands to love Him and love others.