This bravery that God is cementing in my bones is unlike any other. Just a couple months ago I would have never imagined that I would journey by myself, to evangelize and help the needy. I would have never imagined that I would be kneeling to pray at peoples feet in a public park. Did I mention by myself? I knew wanted to help and wanted my business to glorify God but never saw it happening quite like this. There’s a boldness rising and I’m allowing it. This AMPERS& movement has shaken up my life and it's only the first one. I assembled and handed out the packages and took an hour bus ride to Lake Eola Park as you saw in my Instagram story but there’s one lady that has stained my life forever. She told me to document her story and I’m trying to in the best way I can.
Let’s start from the beginning. I gave out a few packages to some women, then took a rest and decided that I would leave shortly after. I said I’d do one more lap just in case I missed anyone or so that I could give others who’s already gotten more since I had leftovers. While waiting for a text from my friend I decided to walk around one more time. I spotted a woman with her head down in an area that I already passed but at that time she wasn’t there. I didn’t have my glasses so I wasn’t able to deduce her age. When I walked closer I realized that she was way passed the age for the contents of my package but I felt in my spirit to still give it to her. I walked up to her nervously and said “hey I know you might not need these items but I think I should still give them to you” she took the package and read the ‘you are loved’ message at the front, startled, she earnestly said to me “oh my, this is such a blessing why are you doing this? please sit down with me”. I was awestruck that she wanted me beside her. I truly felt honoured. I sat. She softly said “what compelled you to do this, was this your Saviour?” And I said, "yes" and she told me that she was a believer as well and she saw the Holy Spirit in me. She explained that she knew us meeting was God ordained and no one could tell her that it wasn’t. We spoke for two hours and some change and she laid out her story to me, that not only blew my mind but blessed me. Here’s her story.
We’ll call her Miss Ashley, a name we agreed upon for her anonymity—which I’ll be explaining in a second. A very eloquent, funny and wise woman, formerly an English teacher with 7 children. She lives in Brooklyn, New York in a beautiful home her father passed down to her. She got hit by a truck recently and had her leg broken in two different areas so she now has a walker that she told me she won’t be needing soon, as the doctor said she’s healing. After this, she came to Orlando a couple weeks ago to purchase an office for her real estate business. While on a bus one day, she had her bags stolen from her walker that possessed everything important for her endeavour. In short, her whole identity was ripped from her. The suitcase that she came with is now in storage. She told me about her credit history and that her identification is one people would pay $2500 for seeing that she has a star on her card as per what the police told her. She filed a case for the theft and the police requested the tape from the bus. They found the woman who robbed her and she is being charged up to 32 years in prison for identity theft, mistreating the elderly and another thing if I recall correctly. The case is being worked on as we speak and it is expected to be completed around September 18th/19th. Since then, she has been sleeping on the park bench everyday because during this time she has no access to anything. The bank won’t allow her to take any loans because of the case that’s in process. She just has to wait.
Naturally, I asked her about her children and why doesn’t she let them know what’s happening. She was so adamant about keeping it a secret from them because she sees herself as the mother and she would never want them to leave their families to tend to her and that she’s certain that God will help her and it’s His grace that has kept her thus far. She said she knows if her children were to ever find out that this happened they would cause havoc because they are very protective of her. This is faith I’ve never seen before. The sacrificial love of a mother is unmatched. She’d rather stick it out, as a woman, on cold park benches, in a state where she isn't from, until everything gets sorted than to have her children be hurt by her situation. She chooses to carry the weight of everything.
We then went on and on about God. She mentioned that she’s never been to a place before where she’s seen people with absolutely nothing. She’s been living on the streets since then and she noticed that the other homeless people were in the same clothes that she met them in a couple weeks ago and it breaks her heart. I brought up that maybe she’s in this position because God wants to show her what He wants her to do with her real estate business. She told me that it was amazing that I even brought that up because it’s something she has been in dialogue with God about.
Throughout this whole interaction, we’ve had many different scenarios that pointed out why were we to meet which all solidified that the vision God placed on my heart to go out and reach women, was not in vain. She reassured me constantly that what I’m doing is powerful and this was a true miracle in her life. Everything she was telling me were almost the exact words I’ve prayed to God about and I was just in complete shock.
She began to ask about my church and I told her all about what they do for the city. She also wanted to know if the church would be able to cover her with $50 for her bus pass and money to do her laundry until the 18/19th when her case is done and she’s willing to reimburse the church. I just want to add that she would not have asked this if we didn’t have this lengthy conversation where we both exposed our hearts. She wanted nothing from me and said the note I had in the package was enough for her. She only felt comfortable enough to ask because she trusted me. I told her that reimbursements weren’t necessary but she said that she truly feels within her heart to do it. I explained to her that I’m willing to sell my products to get the money for her and if I don’t sell them in time I’ll just withdraw the money from my account. I am the church. I am the body as well and I’m willing to give what I have, though not much, to help another without receiving. She said to me that I’m her friend and that she would want to repay me because friends help each other. I don’t even know how to describe the beauty of this woman’s heart.
At the end of our very emotional, deep, funny and fulfilling conversation, I gave her my contact information and the days and times she can call me. I just got off the phone with her some minutes ago. She borrowed a phone from someone at the park and my friend, Miss Ashley called me.
So this is the story, and I’m probably leaving out some things. All my words are doing no justice and I’m fumbling to gather words to paint this picture. Today is Monday and I’m trying to sell the 9 “City On A Hill” candles I have left to make the money for her. I’ll be heading out with a friend tomorrow (Tuesday) to give her the money.
I also wanted to mention that I did try to take a photo of her but she wanted to remain anonymous (for now) for obvious reasons mentioned above. I even asked if I could take a picture of just her hands but she said no because her nails weren’t done, what a woman lol. I wanted you to see the soul you’re investing in and I know you’ll see her soon and when she’s comfortable I’ll reveal her real name. She is a true reflection of what it’s like to be at the top and in the blink of an eye, lose everything. In my first AMPERS& blog I spoke about the meaning of “things” and how it has none. Things are temporary and not how we should define our wealth. Miss Ashley, is an example of what an identity in Christ looks like. She lost her man-made identity but she’s cultivated a pure heart throughout her life. She’s safeguarded the love of God in the pockets of her heart and that’s what’s keeping her. A mighty woman, indeed.
Photos below of where I met her and the note I left with her on when to call me.