(Annie is a former “High Class Call Girl” who worked in the Las Vegas sex industry. After years of being abused, beaten, raped, pimped, and worse… Annie found freedom through the blood of Jesus Christ. Through the mercy of God, Annie is now serving Jesus by ministering to those still bound by sin.)
You can find out more about Annie and her ministry here.
by Annie Lobert
I went somewhere so AMAZING this weekend and it has changed my life forever….
First of all, I wasn’t going to go….I had fear and doubt in my spirit. I have not had a lot of great experiences at the “churches” since I came back to God–and sad to say this was because of a spirit of judgment upon my past. But when I came to Valley Bible Fellowship something was different. I was asked by women in my church to go to a retreat this weekend, I could not afford to go…(I am in a temporary job right now…my heart is to do full time ministry) but they offered to pay for it, so that excuse was OUT. The whole week I anticipated this trip, and I wondered what God would do if I decided to take the invitation. I heard Him say softly to me “Annie, I am inviting you because I love you…but you don’t have to go if you don’t want to” When I heard this I was IN–and even though I was scared to “step out” I did it anyway….for I knew God was about to radically bless me.
Due to a message that I failed to check the night before of a time change, (the devil trying to stop me) I was late getting to the church to leave for the retreat….but my faithful friends that had invited me waited, with SMILES on their faces. They told me how glad they were to have me come. I had NO IDEA what was about to really happen.
I had never been to a “retreat” before, and as I walked into the building I was met and greeted by so many women from our sister church in Bakersfield, California, VALLEY BIBLE! I had no idea that this church was so HUGE. But I noticed something very different about these women. So different that I couldn’t believe it, and to tell you the truth I was actually SHOCKED. There was a glow on them, and when I met and looked at each one of them, they ALL smiled. Hugs. Kisses. Stories exchanged. Prayers. Encouragement. Plans for ministry. Hope. Faith. CORPORATE WORSHIP. Laughing, crying, singing, smiling. But mostly….REAL LOVE. These women showed us so much love from God it was incredible and awe inspiring!!!!
And my girls from Vegas….oh how they changed my perception of REAL friendship. I stayed and fellowshipped with the most amazing women! We had slumber parties, we told each other how we grew up, we exchanged painful memories and prayed for each other. We ate tons of junk food…we laughed, we cried….and when we thought we were done, we felt led to wash each other’s feet….YES WE WASHED EACH OTHER’S FEET… and even though they might not of smelled too nice…we loved every minute of it! And do you know what happened? We BONDED. It brought us closer to each other….I now understand why Jesus taught this….this was true intimacy with the people you love….and because of this, I can truly say that they are my sisters in Christ. We will NEVER be the same.
If I then, your Lord and Teacher (Master), have washed your feet, you ought (it is your duty, you are under obligation, you owe it) to wash on another’s feet. For I have given you this as an example, so that you should do (in your turn) what I have done to you.
I assure you, most solemnly I tell you, A servant is not greater than his master, and no one who is sent is superior to the one who sent him. If you know these things, BLESSED AND HAPPY AND TO BE ENVIED if you practice them (if you act accordingly and REALLY do them) John 13:14-17
You see, IT’S NOT ABOUT US! I am to be a servant to the body of Christ. God showed me that by being a servant to others, He could show His unending love for me–and because of this…I felt true joy for the first time in life. By “stepping out” in faith…the love I searched for was really Him…and He used other people to show me. God’s love isn’t just in the bible, it isn’t just in the blessings you have like money, houses or cars….it’s in the very body of Christ that wants to reach out and love you. But we need to sometimes reach out FIRST to receive that love…this will show God that you really want it. Well, I wanted that love, and God gave it to me! Thank you Jesus!!! My church has that REAL love. I am so proud to be part of my church….for they love UNCONDITIONALLY!
Girls from Valley Bible Fellowship, both churches….I thank you with all of my heart, and I am so excited at what God is going to do as we serve Him together! Because of the unconditional love that you have shown me regardless of my past….I am forever touched and changed by your simple act of LOVE.
I love you so much!!!!!!!!