How We Come Out of Hiding

{image: 123RF Stock Photo / Nadezhda Bolotina}

{image: 123RF Stock Photo / Nadezhda Bolotina}

Ever read a book that wrecks you up so much you have to hide from life to process it for a while?

Yeah, that happened to me over the past few weeks.

What did I read that hit so hard? Fallen: Out of the Sex Industry & Into the Arms of the Savior by Annie Lobert. It’s her story of trying to escape a childhood of abuse, neglect and insecurity by controlling men and working as a high-class escort (prostitute).

Annie Lobert Fallen Book

The story attracted me because I’m the mother of four daughters and I live in one of the highest-volume sex-trafficking cities in the United States. I wanted to know what would lead a girl to be vulnerable to that tragic experience, in hopes I might help prevent my own daughters or their friends from its grip.

In the first few chapters, Lobert shares,

“It was such a pattern—doing things I really didn’t want to do because I thought it was the only way I’d ever experience love.” —Annie Lobert, Fallen

That’s what drew me in. I wasn’t reading for purely social interest anymore. It became about me, a woman who has struggled (and still does) with the same insecurities that became the slope that sucked the innocence and joy from this woman’s life until she grabbed God’s hand and let him redefine her.

Lobert shares her story with such brave honesty (it’s probably too intensely honest to have your under-14 year old daughters read with you, if you’re considering it). How her longing for attention, affection and approval took her from using her looks to get a drink to using sex to pay for her drug habit. The abusive relationships, the loss of her sense of self… she spares nothing in her story, which forced me to enter the dialogue and hold nothing back as well.

  • Who among us women hasn’t struggled with the reality of loneliness, rejection, loss?
  • Who here hasn’t discovered the power of beauty, and either used it to get what we need… or envied those who do, and felt that much uglier for it?
  • Who here hasn’t compromised her feminine self to feel connected or powerful in relationships or at work?

We’ve all struggled with issues this author writes about. And to read where that can go? To hear how that broke Lobert’s life until God tenderly, over time, reshaped the pieces into beauty far greater than she dared hope for?

We all need that. Don’t we?

When we’re lost or fear we’re beyond finding, we all need to know we’re never lost for good. {Tweet This}

Not. Ever.

Reading her story reminded me of some things I’ve lost during my lifetime—things I’ve given away—to which I need to allow God access and allow healing to unfold. So I needed to take the time to begin that these past few weeks. The journey is not finished, but the course is set.

I don’t know where it will lead, but I trust the process to God who is faithful to complete what is started in us (see Philippians 1:6).

Christ’s time of making himself known to his people is when they are most at a loss. When they think they have lost themselves, he will let them know that they have not lost him. —Matthew Henry

We’ve all fallen at some point, in some way. And we all need to know we’re not alone so we can get up and find our footing again. I’m grateful for Annie Lobert’s bravery in writing her story.

And I’m grateful we can share ours here together, too.


Linking up for coffee today with Holley Gerth and a whole bunch of other beautiful encouragers.

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  1. says

    It sounds like a heartbreaking and heart healing book. I hate that this goes on under our noses but love that God longs to redeem these situations.

    • says

      I hear you, Sarah. I was only made aware of it through a friend at church inviting me to a ranch in a neighboring county where women who’ve escaped the sex trade can heal and build relationships and job skills. It captured my heart and I’ve not been able to shake the reality of it since. I suppose the more of us who know, the less it goes unseen and unredeemed.

  2. says

    Powerful post, Laurie. Even more powerful story! And I can relate about doing crazy stuff just so someone would offer love. TERRIBLE. BUT GOD…Him our good, good Daddy who rescues us from the dark days and brings us into the light. May God keep His hand on your four girls and may they realize early how crazy in love He is with each of them. Thanks for visiting my blog. Nice to meet you. #CoffeeForYourHeart

    • says

      Thanks so much for stopping by, Sheila, and for your prayer over my girls. Amen to that, and may the Lord protect ALL our girls that are growing up in such a world.