Dear God

Dear God,

I just read over the prayer requests for last week at Scarlet Hope and my heart is heavy, eyes full of tears. The hurts, skewed perceptions of truth, and bad decisions. Some weeks I stare at the email header… unable to open it because of the pain hidden behind that electronic barrier. Then I remember the volunteers that reach out to these women every week and the coward must be put to shame, and I open them, with a new tear over each one of these women and men.

You were well aware long before this email was sent. Michael the Archangel doesn’t step into the throne room each day and pronounce, “Yes Lord, it was a rough week for Dancer X…Y…Z…and all three A’s. Would you please bless them Lord?”, turning to walk away. Holy laughter would thunder in heaven if this were to happen.

God, you are there with Dancer E, as she retreats to deep places within herself from the church ladies. Pit lies mentally replay, her past convincing her the thoughts are real, reinforcing her withdrawal further still. God you are there with Manager T as she lays awake all night, unable to trust that life is safe enough for sleep, her body and mind are slowly destroyed with her hypervigilance to escape lifelong dangers. God you are there with Dancer M who was beaten and left like an animal. Your heart breaks for her, as you breathe into her to please come back to you.

Father God, let me praise you for your greatness that is witnessed by each dancer such as Bartender H who peered into hearts of your love and stepped out with courage for that same love. Great is your faithfulness!

Humbly submitted, Angela Clevenger

The Genesis of Scarlet Hope’s Career Development Program

Scarlet Hope continues to break ground as we serve women exploited and trafficked in the adult entertainment industry. When Rachelle Starr founded Scarlet Hope, she had a dream of employing women in a bakery to give them a life option. That dream came true this past Spring. On April 3, 2017 Scarlet Hope kicked off the first semester of the Career Development Program (CDP), the first program of its kind, anywhere.

The halls of the CDP were super charged with the energy of potential. New students filtered in terrified by the prospect of change, yet possessing an excitement for what they have heard was not only a future of hope, but one created for them long before the foundations of the earth put into place by the great Creator (Ephesians 2:10). This future was based in truth, and formed in love and grace. This future would begin to dissolve a traumatic past that was rooted in a lifetime of lies and abuses piled upon them by others.

Countless staff and volunteer hours had been spent preparing a God-directed process to effect life change. Many of the women served by Scarlet Hope could acquire a new job with relative ease. The challenge came in trying to deal with life on its terms without being properly oriented in the “how”.

The main focus of the CDP is to empower and equip the women who have entered the program with the life and job skills required to not only attain employment but to maintain it. To have a career, not just another meaningless job, press repeat.

The methods employed by the CDP are multifaceted and are the response to the needs we have heard from these ladies. To be effective, the CDP must answer the questions they consistently ask of us:

  1. Can you help me find a job?
  2. If God is so loving and powerful, where was He when ___ (fill in the blank the highly familiar, yet very individual, horrific life experience) was happening to me?
  3. How do I create a healthy life?

 

Following the end goal of equipping, three major areas of skill sets were placed in priority of need.

  1. God skills. This change begins with an accurate self-identity. The CDP participant has to see herself in the truth of who she is, and whose she is- as the daughter of the most high King. She was created by Him for a purpose- to glorify Him by reflecting back the love He has for her.
  2. Life skills. She must learn healthy habits to replace the unhealthy ones. Daily workouts are part of the schedule. These workouts are part of the neurological reconstruction that is beginning to happen. Goal-setting and stewardship are included life-skills.
  3. Job skills. God timed the opening of the bakery as a stepping stone for the CDP.

There must be adequate preparation to succeed in the responsibility of early and hard-working hours spent learning new job skills and positively interfacing with customers who may be having a hard day, all at the same time.

God never takes us where He has not amply provided for us to be. Participants begin this structured programming by spending the majority of their program time in the classroom and less in the bakery. Through the 12 months of instruction the hours begin to invert ending with 100% of program instructional time occurring as job training in Scarlet’s Bakery.

Six months of aftercare follow. Here, the CDP assists the participant with higher education or career planning, based on the goals she has learned to set for herself along the way.

There are many ways for you to be a catalyst for this change.

  1. It takes money to teach others how to attain and maintain a job. You can donate to the CDP here.
  2. To provide food assistance the CDP provides lunch 4 days a week. Your small group could provide lunch for 20 ladies one day a month, or every other month. Kaylee would be thrilled to hear from you!
  3. Volunteer and learn how here! THIS IS A HUGE OPPORTUNITY for you to experience God’s love. Email Program Director, Kaylee Nappo here, about ways you could be a part of life-changing efforts.

The Outreach and Discipleship teams continue to reach out into the enemy’s domain because God calls us to. But never miss what happens that keeps us going: When God grants the privilege of a front row seat to watching a life bound in the chains of lies from the pits of hell do a 180 and learn to walk in the beauty, light, and freedom of God’s Truth… well, it just doesn’t get any better this side of heaven.

 

Written by Angela Clevenger

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Hope for Kids Back To School Bash

Our back to school party for the kids of Scarlet Hope was a huge success! Through partners in the community, we were able to provide more than a dozen backpacks filled with school supplies to children ages 3-15. The kids started school with crayons, binders, paper, pencils and so much more.

Not only did the children receive school supplies, but we had a blast throwing a super hero themed party.  We played games and made super hero crafts.

Our Hope for Kids program is one of the most amazing parts of our ministry.  Every week while their moms are in bible study and support group, the children of Scarlet Hope hear stories from the bible, play games and do crafts, and are shown the love of Jesus Christ by our amazing volunteers.  Most of the children in our program have mothers who did not have the same kinds of opportunities as these kids are getting, and it is our prayer that God will use Scarlet Hope to break cycles of abuse, poverty, and generational sin.

We are so incredibly grateful to all of our volunteers and partners who make things like our Back to School Bash possible, and we are especially thankful to our Hope for Kids volunteers who sacrifice hours of time and energy to love on our kids every week.  Thank you!!!

Gala Update!

Our 8th Annual Gala was a wonderful evening and we’re so thankful to everyone who attended!

Our theme for the night was “Priceless.” We had the honor of hearing from Luke Smallbone from the Christian band “For King and Country.” Luke spoke about his passion for all people to know their priceless worth, especially women trapped in the sex industry. We are so thankful for his support and partnership in this kingdom work.

We also had the privilege of hearing from Tanyqua Oliver, a spoken word poet. Everyone in the room was touched by her raw performance and her powerful story. Two brave women from our Career Development Program shared parts of their stories through a video, moving everyone by their honesty and courage.

Lastly, Rachelle Starr, our very own Executive Director and Founder, spoke on the vision for the future of the ministry and ways to partner with us to reach more women in the adult entertainment industry with the message of their priceless worth.

This amazing night could not have happened without the support and generosity of so many and we are deeply grateful. Thank you to our speakers, our sponsors, our matching donors, the countless businesses/individuals who donated to our silent auction and raffle, and everyone who attended! We are immensely blessed by your support and partnership!

 

 

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Judgement Free Zone

“Don’t judge me!” can be called out jokingly as we reach for that second piece of cake or eighth piece of pizza. Paul talks about not judging others outside of the church (1 Cor. 5:12). Is this because we can be a stumbling block to them?  What if we don’t know where they are in their walk toward the cross?

Within the church we are each already in the process of sanctification- of becoming more like Him; He already has our ear. This is not the case for those who have not surrendered their lives to Him. Historically, too much damage has been done to pre-believers by Christians and this happens when we expect the same behaviors out of them as we do to those in Christ.

The important note here is to watch the content of our hearts. Our faces and our body language grant instant access to what is in there.  And when we have something in there that does not belong, such as judgment, it is exposed all over us. The hurt that we cause from this is often unknown to us but be sure that it does not go unnoticed by the sensitive one who is watching you to see what this God you say you live by is like. That can either be a great service, or disservice to Him, and the one who is watching.

                “It is not my business to judge those who are not part of the church.”                                           1 Corinthians 5:12 NCV

Encourage us (1 Thessalonians 5:11): What is your heart telling unbelievers about God through your actions?