Adventures in Hillbrow

Wow. I’ve had a CRAZY week. We arrived in Hillbrow four days ago after two days on the road from Cape Town. Missing Cape Town already, but I’ll get back there someday…
Hillbrow, Day 1: We attended training with an organization called MES (mes.org.za) that focuses on reaching the people of Hillbrow, and joined them in the afternoon for outreach. We set up in a busy marketplace and participated in a public art activity that attracted quite a large crowd. About 8 people came to accept Christ that day, hallelujah! That night, we joined with the Salvation Army to do an all-night worship and prayer night called the Urban Campout in a “dodgy” neighborhood in Jo’burg known for brothels and drug trafficking. We watched Ghana tragicly lose to Uruguay (so sad…), then hit the streets from 11pm till 4:30 in the morning. We prayed and worshipped a lot, but the part of the night that sticks out to me most was the prayer walk. A large group of us circled the neighborhood, praying for the area and keeping our eyes out for any prostitutes or other people the Lord would highlight to us. God set up many divine appointments for us that night. Highlights: many of our team members talked with a certain prostitute that really burdened our hearts. We saw her throughout the night, encouraging her when we could and praying for her freedom. We got news that the next morning, her and a friend both called the Salvation Army to be taken to a Safe House, where they are now. Two more women out of the hands of their pimps, AMEN!!! Also, at about 2 am, God led us to a convenience store in the neighborhood where we discovered a man sitting on a crate, half-conscious. He had been shot in the arm, thrown out of his vehicle, and his car hijacked. He had been sitting in that store for quite some time and nobody had bothered to help him. We were able to call the ambulance for him and keep him awake and as comfortable as possible until the medics arrived 40 minutes later. While waiting, several men came in that spoke words of condemnation over him, telling him he should just die- one man even offered to finish the job himself, but our men quickly ushered him out of the store. We were also able to talk with him yesterday, and he was released from the hospital, expected to fully recover. I’m so thankful we were able to be there that night, I’m sure that his story would have had a much different outcome…
Because of the switch in ministry covering, we moved our lodging to a (much safer, cozier) Christian retreat center outside Jo’burg, and are currently re-routing our plans for the last week. Yesterday, the 4th was somewhat of a Sabbath for us- we were given extra-long devotional time and a nice Independence Day braai (barbecue). The alone and quiet time was much needed, especially out on these beautiful premises. The cow smell reminds me of home! ☺
Today turned out to be a very interesting day. We spent 4 hours in worship and intercession this morning. This afternoon we walked the streets of Hillbrow, praying for the neighborhoods and asking him for specific places and areas to intercede for. Last time God led us to pray for a brothel, it was shut down (google the Arabesque Club raid), so today we were expectant. During our walk, Our team of 6 strolled into this building called “Entertainment Centre”. Before we knew it, we had just received free admission into the most well-known strip club in the city, and were ushered upstairs to be shown how the entire business works. Two men and a woman from our team went into the bar to pray and talk to a few (mostly clothed) girls while the other 3 of us girls ventured into the area where the “show” was going on. We spent some time talking to many of the girls and got a lot of insight into how the industry works and how this particular club was set up. It was incredible how much favor we got; we were able to talk to any of the girls freely, we spent much time talking with the manager who invited our team back any time for free admission (which doesn’t happen anywhere!). The 11-story strip club has each level featuring its own “show” room, bar, and several rooms for rent. The manager bragged that this was the only club in the world to receive free advertising in Playboy, indicating how highly-esteemed they are globally. This could be the club that changes the sex industry, not just in Jo’burg or South Africa, but in the world!!! Our team is seeking wisdom on how to handle this shocking open-door opportunity. So PLEASE, lots of prayer for wisdom and guidance in this. Pray that these open doors would stay open as long as it takes for breakthrough. Pray for our discernment and safety. Pray that the abortion clinic located on the first floor of this building would be shut down.
I can’t believe how quickly this trip has gone by, but there’s still so much work to do!

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2 thoughts on “Adventures in Hillbrow

  1. Soren February 28, 2011 at 12:51 pm Reply

    lol, did I read you correctly, did the strip club manager ask you to pray for his club?, lol

  2. Dianna August 22, 2012 at 7:01 am Reply

    He didn't exactly invite us back specifically for prayer, but there is no denying we had an outpouring of favor. The manager may have been hoping to promote his business by showing us kindness, but I believe he had no idea what was really going on under his own nose.As it turned out, we didn't make it back to this club before the trip ended.

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