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Stories

Stories of Transformation through Christ!

More than one million villages still have not heard the Gospel. You can help us reach as many as possible. People, just like these, are waiting to be transformed by Christ.

Every village that is reached results in amazing stories of transformation through the power of Jesus Christ. These are real stories of real people.  

 

New Habits, New Hope

It had all the ingredients of a happy day: wedding preparations, family and friends helping to celebrate. But once again, old ways of retaliation took over in the Filipino village.

"My first son was about to marry – but the day before, while they decorated for the ceremony, a man from an opposing tribe attacked my nephew. They struck him in the head, knocking him unconscious," shares a pastor from the Kalinga Province village.

Immediately, the men of the tribe gathered round the fallen man, each villager, reaching for a carried knife, quick to revenge their friend and relative.

"Please!" cried the pastor. "Do not do this, the wedding is tomorrow, we must act differently, despite the anger we feel."

The young man was in the hospital for two weeks, while his head injury healed. The tension within the neighboring tribes mounted as time wore on. The danger of one tribe attacking the other became so great, that all local schools were closed temporarily.

"But our volunteer Bible teachers continued to go around and talk to the students and parents about the realities of revenge. They always talked about forgiveness," shares the pastor.

Weary of the conflict and eager to help work it out in a healthier way, many students decided to return to school. Many parents warned them about the imminent dangers of being around the village, but something was different.

Most of the students in the schools in this Filipino village had been hearing about Jesus Christ through their Bible classes. They were ready to put their faith to practice. A strong desire to work out this problem different than their ancestor started to emerge.

"The students told me they would not seek revenge like their families, because the volunteer teachers had been teaching them about forgiveness. Thanks to the students' stand, the community leaders were able to renew the broken trust and peace that occurred before the wedding that day."

To everyone's astonishment, an agreement was reached: the man who attacked the pastors nephew agreed to pay for all of the medical expenses incurred.

"How much I thank God for the courage of the volunteers who teach these children about Christ and who didn't stop reaching out to the families, even during this difficult time! God brought about true healing, and that is a true miracle."

Dying to Believe

Not long after hearing about Jesus from a local church planter, Aye Myat Mon and her son were en route across the city on a train.

Headed to another district of a large city in Myanmar, and far from home, illness struck unexpectantly.

"My son became suddenly quite ill. He passed out lifelessly on the floor of the train. I was scared. I did not know what to do!" she shares of the ordeal.

In a panic, Aye Myat Mon desperately tried to revive him. But he was unconscious, and nothing helped.

"I had no idea what was wrong, and I felt so helpless. I could do nothing to help him," Aye Myat Mon explains as precious minutes ticked by and turned into an hour.

Desperate, Aye Myat Mon's thoughts flew to the words spoken to her just days before.

"The local man who was a church planter told me of the love and strength of Jesus. I was hoping Jesus could help my son. My son had believed, but I was not so sure.

"So I grabbed my son in my arms with people crowded around, looking at us, I began to pray to this Jesus he told me about."

She cried out to Jesus and said, 'My son has believed in you; he is your disciple, please do not let him die." Uncontrollable crying wracked her body. But then, a miracle.

"I saw his left hand begin to move and he slowly came back to life after this his body shook and he spoke very softly me."

"I cannot see anything," he said.

Her young son began to quote from the Psalms, "The Lord is my shepherd I shall not want ..."

As onlookers watched in amazement, his sight returned while he quoted Scripture. His strength slowly returned. Aye Myat Mon wept, and believed.

"We began to hug each other and we praised God like crazy people!" she laughs.

"I had experienced the power of God first hand."

The First Believer

"I was seeking for God," Nazar says as he starts his story.

He was searching, but it wasn't until visiting his aging mother that he was finally able to take steps toward Christ. His mother's friend mentioned her involvement in a church where they read and studied the Bible. Nazar was intrigued. His mother's friend invited him to an evening service. Nazar writes that this church service was "a bright spark of light for my God seeking soul."

In fact, Nazar spent most of the night following the church service reading a copy of a Bible. While the Bible fascinated Nazar, there was much that he did not understand. So, he returned to church the following day for a regular Sunday service. Nazar was able to ask the church members some of his questions about the Bible. They were able to point him in the direction of a church closer to his own village.

Fortunately for Nazar, the church located close to his village had literature that would help him better understand the Word of God. Bible study lessons aided Nazar in truly learning who God is and what the Christian life entails. In this way, he was led to consciously invite God into his heart and life. In his own words, "Now I am a member of His church."

Nazar is picking up the torch himself. As the first believer in his village he feels a responsibility to share the Gospel. He writes, "Now I am picking up many booklets for people in my village. I pray and believe that many people of my village will start reading the Bible and find their way to church."

No Longer Enemies

Pwo Kar didn't want anything to do with Jesus Christ. She went so far as to describe the church as her enemy. She knew of others in her Burmese village who professed belief in this new God, but Pwo Kar was determined not to be one of them.

Some friends of Pwo Kar's regularly invited her family to attend the weekly prayer meetings at the church. She resisted, but the testimonies they consistently shared with her could not be ignored.

"I listened to the Christians and realized their prayers were always being answered. Things in their lives were changing; needs were being met. I began to understand that they were praying to a real God," shares Pwo Kar.

The hardness in her resolve began to ebb when disaster struck Pwo Kar's daughter.

"One of my daughters became very sick. She was so ill she was no longer able to speak. We did not know what was wrong, and it was serious. We were desperate to help her, so I invited the Christian pastor to our home to share the Word of God and pray for her.

"Slowly, one day, my daughter began to speak! She got better and better. Because of this, we began to believe in this Jesus, too."

As their lives slowly changed in the wake of knowing Jesus, Pwo Kar began noticing uncomfortable issues that needed to be dealt with.

"We had always had trouble with our neighbors, who were also unbelievers. We had such arguments with them that we were not on speaking terms. We could not forgive them for past hurts. After becoming believers, we knew we had to offer them forgiveness."

It wasn't an easy step, but Pwo Kar's family mended the relationship with their neighbors and shared Christ with them.

Not only did relationships heal, but this family laid their needs in Jesus care, and began to see them being met.

"Christ began to truly meet our daily needs. Before, we often struggled with enough money to eat. I struggled with a heart problem. But since truly trusting in Jesus with these things, we have seen our needs taken care of. We live simply but we have healthy relationships, food, restored health and a real God to ask for help. We are so grateful."

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