Vaani (whose name we’ve changed for security reasons) from India and her family became Christians after her mother was healed, but her abusive husband was not happy. After escaping him, Vaani found that she could not support her daughters – until you stepped in.
“Then I will hold my head high above my enemies who surround me. At his sanctuary I will offer sacrifices with shouts of joy, singing and praising the Lord.” Psalm 27:6 (NLT)
Even after escaping an abusive marriage with her two daughters, becoming homeless and jobless for a time, and then facing two waves of a pandemic, this is the verse that Vaani from India holds on to.
Thanks to your prayers and support, Vaani now runs a successful clothing business, which has managed to stay afloat despite coronavirus restrictions, and her daughters are fully involved in their local church. But it has been a long, difficult journey for the family to reach this point.
"My husband did not like us going to the church. Initially, my daughters and I would attend secretly or when he was not around..." Vaani
When Vaani’s mother discovered she had a stomach tumour, the family went from hospital to hospital looking for a cure. They even tried different places of idol worship, but nothing worked.
It was then that a neighbour suggested they visit the local church for prayer. Vaani went, along with her parents and her daughters, and over time Vaani’s mother was healed of the tumour! All of them then became Christians and actively participated in the church.
But Vaani’s newfound faith was not welcomed by her husband. “He did not like us going to the church. Initially, my daughters and I would attend secretly or when he was not around, but to our surprise he would constantly follow us,” Vaani says.
Each day, her husband – often drunk – would attack the family. Vaani was beaten severely on several occasions for refusing to deny Christ, and her daughters were verbally threatened not to attend church. As well as the physical and verbal abuse, Vaani discovered her husband was also having an affair, which began even before she became a Christian. Vaani was heartbroken. She eventually separated from her husband and took her daughters to live with her parents.
But her husband followed them and caused chaos outside her parents’ home. He would even shout abuse at the family as travelled to church. But there wasn’t much Vaani could do, and so she endured the pain.
Vaani and her parents didn’t have enough money to run the home and with no educational background, Vaani couldn’t find a well-paying job. The pandemic only increased their hardships. The local church was able to help Vaani financially for few months, but eventually the pandemic limited the church’s resources.
It was at this moment when you came through for Vaani and her family. Local Open Doors partners heard about Vaani and her struggles and they helped Vaani to set up a clothing shop at her home. Thanks to you, Vaani could buy sarees and dress materials and sell them in her local community.
A few months into her new business, Vaani was blessed with a job in a nearby factory. “I am so grateful to the organisation that they saw my miserable plight and helped me in setting up a clothing store at my house,” she says, overjoyed. “As soon as I received your help, God opened a way and I was offered a job in a nearby factory; indeed, your help has made way for more blessings for me and my family. I am also able to make some clothing sales among my co-workers at the factory.
"Your help encouraged and opened doors to many more blessings in my life." Vaani
“Today I am able to earn a decent amount of money and help my parents, provide for the needs of my daughter and save a small amount. I can also give my tithe to the church which stood with me in my time of trouble. I am not only blessed financially but spiritually; I can come closer to God and I can see that this help stands as a testimony for my neighbours and to my husband.”
Sadly, Vaani’s husband could not stand to see her succeeding in this way. He attacked her while she was on her way to work, leaving her with a wound on her head and bruises on her body.
“All I could do was pray for our protection from my husband, knowing that God will shield and protect us. I started going to work and attending church again, and by God’s grace we did not have any more encounters with him. But at times my daughters still fear to go to church alone,” Vaani explains.
During the second wave of pandemic, Vaani’s clothing business was slow, but she was still able to work at the factory on alternate days, owing to pandemic protocols.
She testifies to God’s goodness to her: “God held my head high and has rescued me from my suffering through kind aid. I longed to share my testimony with you and was praying about how to do that. Your visit has helped me to praise His name and testify how your help encouraged and opened doors to many more blessings in my life. I also praise God for the suffering and pain that I went through. It is painful to think of those times, but I am assured of God’s hand on me in all my pain.”
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