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The Comfort Of Darkness PDF Print E-mail
Written by kim   
Wednesday, November 12, 2014
My Beautiful Friend Stefanie

Periodically I will have different people guest blogging for me. God has allowed my path to cross with some amazing individuals and I want you to hear what He’s been doing in their lives. This is my friend and ministry partner, Stefanie Jeffers. Let’s Connect On Twitter:@KimTabor @StrippedFree@stefjeff1107

“I could ask the darkness to hide me and the light around me to become night – but even in darkness I cannot hide from you. To you the night shines as bright as day. Darkness and light are the same to you.” Psalm 139:11-12

To many, the dark is a frightening place. Darkness blinds our eyes to that which surrounds us and hides our path from us. But for some, the darkness becomes a solitary place of existence where neither good nor evil seem to permeate; instead it seems timeless, even as days and weeks and years go by.

I once attempted to live my life in the duality of both light and dark. In the light, I was with my daughter. I was myself a daughter, an aunt, and a sister. There were times of love and laughter. But just beyond the light were the shadows of the life I lived in the dark. I would remove the cross necklace from around my neck and turn away from the light. In this dark place I was whoever someone wanted me to be. I was a stripper, a prostitute, a fantasy; I was Carmen or I was Stefanie, and in the darkness the line between the two blurred.

Why, then, did I not run towards all that was lovely and full of light? Where in the darkness did I lose so much of myself that it became home? And once you are gone, lost in the dark, how can you ever find your way home? Please understand this about me and many other women who are in similar situations all over the world…there is often comfort in the darkness. In a world without light, there is relief in the belief that you cannot be seen. In dark places, there is no more expectation placed on shoulders that can barely bear the burdens of surviving the day. If there is no expectation, there is no failure. In the dark you can fool yourself into believing that you are courageous, though fear is the major force that drives you. It becomes what you know, and there is always comfort in that which is familiar. Hope is not an option because it is always followed by disappointment.

“Because of God’s tender mercy, the morning light from heaven is about to break upon us, to give light to those who sit in darkness and in the shadow of death, and to guide us to the path of peace.” Luke 1:78-79

hope-light-in-darknessThere is, however, hope. There are moments in this ministry when this hope is received with the urgency of one who hasn’t had something to drink in years. It is so beautiful to see light begin to dawn in someone’s eyes when they realize they are loved by Jesus. There is laughter and tears, triumphs and disappointments, and love and forgiveness when we journey with a woman who chooses the Light. There are also times of great sadness when we see someone turn away from the gift of grace over and over again. Our hearts break when we see someone we love retreat back into the comfort of darkness, fearful of all that the light both promises and exposes.

Stripped_Free_Social_Media_Avatars_Stripped_Free_Social_Media_Avatar_AAnd still, we will go. We have been called to be carriers of Light into dark places and we have faith in the God of the universe that nothing is impossible and no one is too far gone for His saving grace.   We are learning to love like He loves; knowing that to truly love someone where they are at means sometimes watching them travel back into the darkness while still holding their hand, standing still with the ones who can’t believe, and continuing the slow journey towards Jesus with those who are ready.

“I have come as a light to shine in this dark world, so that all who put their trust in me will no longer remain in the dark.” John 12:46


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Men and Strippers PDF Print E-mail
Written by kim   
Thursday, September 25, 2014

Kim&Stef_Easter2014Periodically I will have different people guest blogging for me. God has allowed my path to cross with some amazing individuals and I want you to hear what He’s been doing in their lives. This is my friend and ministry partner, Stefanie Jeffers. What a great reminder that God can use us in places where we least expect it!

Here's Stefanie:

Every time I say “never” I’m pretty sure God laughs. I had every intention of keeping my past to myself. God had other plans. Since I was sure that would be all He would ask of me, I was completely firm in my stance on never going back into a strip club. Ever.   I wonder how big He grinned when I said that. I currently spend every week in strip clubs in Indianapolis, two of which were clubs where I worked.   And since I left the industry almost 11 years ago, I have thought that men were most likely the enemy and there was no way possible for them to help strippers. So what did God do? He sent me to talk to a bunch of men. And He laughed.

A man I highly respect who attends my church asked me to come and talk to his men’s small group about Stripped Free and a little about my life when I worked in the sex industry. Now let’s be honest, this had the potential to be extremely awkward, uncomfortable and embarrassing. God, however, doesn’t call us to be comfortable and I am willing to look foolish for Him. After all, He rescued me and I love Him. He also calls us sometimes to teach us something new, not to just be the teacher. I learned that night that godly men are real, they care that women in the sex industry are dying without knowing Jesus, and they want to help. Hallelujah. Stef With Men's Bible Study Group_Edit

Every man who was in the room has a daughter, a sister, an aunt, or a mother. They listened to every statistic I shared and were not just interested, but truly compassionate for the many sufferings of women working in the sex industry. They were shocked to discover that a woman who recently asked Jesus into her heart had to return to a strip club out of economic necessity. One man relayed his sadness to me that his new sister in Christ had to go back to a club to work and if he had known, he would have assisted financially. These men asked thoughtful questions and were honest with me about their own pasts and struggles. The men did not just want to know what was going on in the sex industry, but they wanted to know something more…they wanted to know how to help.

Can a man really help a stripper? If you had asked me that a few weeks ago, I am not sure how I would have answered this question. However, today the answer is an emphatic yes! These men have agreed to stand in prayer for us and for the women in the clubs we visit. This is huge! Prayer is a vital component of this ministry. We would never go out on the battlefield without the backing of some serious prayer warriors. The group also gave a substantial monetary donation to this ministry. We are so grateful! There are so many aspects of this ministry that require funding, from outreach to aftercare, and this gift was a wonderful blessing. These men, my friends, are an example of godly men wanting to show the love of Jesus to women. They know that they can’t take part in outreach or in the aftercare pieces of this ministry, but they are going to do what they can to reach one life at a time in the name of Jesus.

If you want to be a part of helping this ministry, would you commit to prayer? You can also help keep the ministry thriving by donating monthly to the Tabor Ministries Kingdom Fund and writing Stripped Free in the comment section. Your gift is tax-deductible. Your financial contribution will help to provide gifts taken into the clubs, immediate economic needs of women trying to exit the industry, continuing Bible study and discipleship, counseling and/or addiction treatment, and help in many other ways as we walk with women on their journey into freedom in Christ. We can’t do this without you! Thank you!


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