This week, Keisha Polonio is sharing with us about her story.
How have you seen God use your story?
When I felt like the Lord called me to work with women in the sex industry. I just remember thinking, Are you sure? I don’t know anything about the sex industry, I haven’t read any books . . . There has to be someone else. There has to be somebody better. I thought, Sure, I’ll pray about it. I just thought, It’ll be easy, I’ll pray, He’ll say no. He was quiet for a long time. And I prayed and prayed. And I remember just saying, “If you want me to, I’ll do it. You just tell me. Because I don’t want to do anything You don’t want me to do. Because I really just want to be in Your will.” There was so much talking. Finally when I was quiet, I heard the Lord saying, “This is the table that I have set before you. Do you want to take a seat? Because nobody else is willing to take a seat. Nobody else is willing to take a seat to serve these women. Nobody else is willing to give up their nights to go into strip clubs, to go into brothels, to go onto street corners and in jails. Nobody else is willing. Will you say yes?” I think there’s something about that—when we’re quiet, Jesus is the one asking us the questions:Will you say yes to me? Will you say yes to My people? Will you say yes to your sisters who are caught and hurting?What do you say? You say yes to that. And I think there are so many people who feel disqualified from doing things that God has called them to do because they haven’t done A, B, and C. Jesus is like, “I’m not looking for that. I’m just looking for a yes. Because there’s a seat for you if you’re willing to say yes.”
In what ways do you see the gospel reflected in your personal story?
Cancer is darkness. A brokenness that sought to rob me of life and love. But Jesus came to that darkness, in radiant light, and clothed me with joy and graced me with freedom. Four years later, I am grateful for the light of Jesus. I am grateful for the freedom. I am grateful for His healing.
What challenges did you overcome in learning to share your story?
Being vulnerable has been the greatest challenge for me, as I’ve learned to share my story. Sharing my life, in all its messiness, was horrifying. But the more honest I became about what the Lord was doing in my life, the easier it was for me to authentically share my heart with the world around me because my stories always point back to Jesus. I learned that in my weakness and vulnerability there is deep strength and power—because of Jesus. Vulnerability is strength in the kingdom. And when I realized that, I felt a sense of freedom that I had never felt before.
Recall a time when learning the story of how God worked in someone else’s life influenced your faith.
I have four friends who have become my sisters, who have and still are battling infertility. These leaders are called to mother, mentor, and disciple a generation of women and men, but none of them being from their own blood line. They open their homes to orphans, labor alongside others to birth new ministries in their cities, and lead their communities with passion and grace. But in the silent moments, when the pain and longing for a child washes over them and tears fill their eyes, they choose to put their hope in Jesus. This kind of strength is breathtaking and leaves me in awe every time.
Why do you believe it’s important to share the stories of how God has worked in our lives?
That simple act of stopping and remembering the goodness of the Lord is where my love of storytelling began. It starts with remembering and ends in worship. Because what else can you do when you remember what the Lord has done for you? When you share stories about what the Lord has done in your life, it points everyone else the One who is worthy of praise and honor.