Stories & News
Paayal: Empowered by a New Perspective
Paayal married her husband Saburi at a very young age and became a mother soon after. She longed to have a happy family life, but her reality was very different. Saburi worked as a daily laborer, but his wages were not enough to meet their family’s needs.
To cope, Saburi spent most of his time and money drinking alcohol with his friends. Saburi was hardly home and never cared for Paayal or their son.
And sometimes, it seemed like that was for the best. When Saburi was home, life was even worse. Saburi yelled at Paayal, insulted her, and even beat her in front of their neighbors. As if he wasn’t humiliating the family enough, Saburi also borrowed money from their neighbors without paying it back, which created conflict that Paayal had to deal with. It seemed Paayal had to face a new form of shame every day.
Desperate for hope, Paayal went to her gods for help. She performed rituals, made vows, fasted, and visited many temples. She begged her gods to relieve her from Saburi’s abuse and their crushing debt. No matter what Paayal did, nothing changed. She feared that she would always be lonely, scared, and struggling to survive.
Paayal finally poured her heart out to her next-door neighbor, a woman named Lanika. After hearing about Paayal’s struggles, Lanika invited Paayal to join the Adult Literacy Class that she was attending. But Paayal was timid and insecure, so she had no desire to try something new and challenging. Lanika encouraged Paayal, though, telling Paayal how the Literacy Class had made her own life better. So, knowing she would have a friend in the classes, Paayal decided to give it a try.
Paayal began attending the Literacy Class every day, though she was hesitant and shy. Gradually, Paayal became more comfortable and participated actively. She learned to read, write, and do basic math, but the biggest change was more personal. Paayal grew in confidence every day! Soon, she was a woman of boldness and courage. With Paayal’s new perspective, life’s many challenges were much less daunting.
After attending a special training offered through the Literacy Class, Paayal took steps to become more self-sufficient. Using materials she already had at home, Paayal learned how to make many of the household items she used to purchase at the market, saving her money on groceries. She also started saving money for the proverbial rainy day.
The positive changes didn’t end there, though.
Through the Bible-based lessons in the Literacy Class, Paayal learned about the powerful love of Christ. She began praying to Jesus, asking Him to restore her family. Paayal began seeing her husband with new eyes of love and compassion. Instead of berating Saburi for his poor choices, Paayal chose to show him love and respect. Saburi noticed Paayal’s new positive attitude, and it disarmed him. He felt regret and began changing his life! He repented of his anger, let go of bad habits, and finally began taking care of his family.
Praise God for showing Paayal and Saburi that He is real and He cares about us! Although Paayal believes in the power of Jesus, she has not yet abandoned idol worship. Pray with us that Paayal and Saburi would both come to a saving knowledge of Christ, leaving all other gods behind.