It’s been almost five years. We’ve walked these tracks and visited the rooms that trap hundreds of women so many times we can’t even begin to count. We’ve learned so much and changed so much. We’ve discovered depths of love we didn’t know we were capable of. We’ve lost dear friends to murder and have witnessed unimaginable suffering. BUT we’ve also seen extraordinary joy.
The women of La Linea have allowed us into their hearts and lives. We know their stories, their children, their dreams; and for many we are allowed the extraordinary privilege of being trusted with the knowledge of their real names. Most of the time we’ve done this alone, and that part has been really hard.
Volunteers have come and gone while we’ve prayed and waited for some who are willing to be in it for the long haul. Most of all we’ve prayed that the church in Guatemala would step in to serve these women. Our most earnest hope has been to see women who once knew the horror of exploitation to return and tell their sisters that there is hope. Driving to La Puerta today I was again asking Shawn when this was ever going to happen. Five years is a long time to walk alone.
And then there was a knock on the door. We knew that three friends would be joining us today. We were wrong. Eleven women, four of them former prostitutes, spilled into La Puerta, filling the space with laughter and love. Some of these women are counted among those we’ve known for the full five years. And here they are, transformed, full of hope and desperate to love the women of La Linea.
If you’re wondering, of course I’m still crying. This is a short visit but it’s also a miracle. Today five years of tears and whispered, pleading prayers is worth it.