We hope that you find these post trip experiences helpful, hopeful and enlightening. There are several more event recaps still to come....
Being a male and walking around at the AVN porn show in Las Vegas is not something you would call uncommon. It is quite the norm, in fact. However, feeling compassion and sensing pain in people's eyes and talking about God's love, no matter what you have done, or where you are currently at in life, is a whole other issue entirely. After standing in the booth for five days, and having conversations with people about why they were there, and explaining why I was there, I found that we all have a very transparent, and common theme: We all just want to be valued, sought after and loved.
I got the opportunity to talk to a man who was thinking about getting into the industry. We talked about his addiction to sex, about how much he loves the feelings that go with it, the "grand" idea of being a porn star, and how much money he could potentially make. Then we discussed the other side of the spectrum: the drugs and addictions, a high chance of std's and aids, the depression, and the dreary idea of once you are in, you feel like you can never get out. We discussed his faith (or where he stood on it at least), and then about our website and the great resources that are available to him. We talked about the stories throughout the book of people who are in the industry currently, and those that were in and are now finally out. I wanted him to read it for himself, rather than me telling him. He happily took a bible and said he would check it out. We shook hands and I soon lost him in the sea of people, walking around trying to take in as much porn related booths as possible. But I know God sees him. Loud and clear. He is still in my prayers today.
God has taken me on an amazing journey these past couple years. 5 years ago I would have come to the AVN Show for entirely different reasons. It’s almost liberating for me to share my past experiences in the industry with the girls here and use it as a way to connect them to Jesus and His love and His grace. Today I had a breakdown after applying makeup on a beautiful 18-year-old Porn Star who just started in the industry a few months ago. She was very excited to be at the convention and loved the energy and attention she was getting from the men at the show. Currently she broadcasts live girl on girl sex shows through an Internet porn site company that a friend introduced her to after her hours were cut working as a camp counselor for the Boys and Girls Club. She was hoping to hook up with other porn producers to expand her portfolio and dive deeper into the porn industry. As I was listening to her story my heart sunk deeper and deeper as images of old, tired, broken, worn out women (like the ones we’ve seen walking around in their thongs and pasties for the past three days) entered my mind. How horrible would it be if this young, beautiful girl someday lost that energy, and that light in her eyes turned into an empty stare? Equipped with false eyelashes, stickers, a T-Shirt, and a bible with the logo “Jesus Loves Porn Stars” we sent her back out amongst the wolves, and I ran to the bathroom to cry, and pray!
WOW! The only word to sum up a very interesting day. The crew and I pulled the first shift of the second day, still only industry individuals on the inside. A few people I had met the previous day came back to talk a little more, some to get more info, and some just to say hi and see how we were doing. I have been blown away by the pure receptiveness of people here. It’s so new to me though, having girls walk up to me in thongs, barely wearing anything, and wanting to know about Jesus Loves Pornstars. I feel it is so crucial to look at these girls in their eyes, differently then the hordes of followers and gawkers surrounding her with their cameras. I see the pain and sadness in their eyes, the feeling of being lost…nothing to hope for, no one to let it all out to. But just a few words I have said, “Jesus loves you no matter what!”, and I saw a particular girls eyes light up just a bit, before she was swept away. I’m happy God brought my wife and I here, with the other wonderful people who are involved. Everyday were trusting that God will work through us, in His time, for His will, and for His purpose. I may not see the immeadiate fruits of our labor, but I am very pleased God allowed me to plant a seed.
It was 10 years ago when we first attended the AVN Adult Expo in Vegas. We are back this year and will be here until Saturday. We have a great team with us from Eastlake Church. The show has moved this year to the Hard Rock Hotel.
We will being posting some videos and updates on the site and on Twitter and Facebook.