"R" went through some severe hardships in life. It was particularly these difficulties that led her to turn to Christ.
She lost her son, whom she loved very much, but the experience prepared her and her husband to bring hope to many other children.
My name is R_____. I come from a family that believed strongly in Buddhism. When I was still young, my family sent me to a Christian school. I didn't know much about God or Christianity. However, being in the Christian school, I began to hear the name of Jesus. During school we had worship time and prayer time. I did not understand or know much about Christianity, but every time I went to the chapel I would see this scripture saying, "Love the Lord your God with all your heart and love your neighbor as yourself" (Matthew 22:37-39). The best part of the school that I enjoyed so much was Christmas, when we had drama and performances and cookies and candies.
When I was in grade four, I moved to the government school. In the government school I seemed to forget everything about Christ and about Christianity until I was about 20 years old. My normal family life did not have anything to do with Christianity at all.
Then I married a man who worked for a Christian University. This was the second time I began to hear about Christianity. My husband began to tell me about Jesus Christ. At first he invited me to visit his work place where there are some people who wanted to teach me about Christ. At the time he took me, to a local church, a Thai church. This was where I met the first pastor in my life. Going to that church, I did not know much about Christianity, but I began to remember some of the scripture verses like, "Love the Lord your God with all your heart" and, "God so loved the world" (John 3:16). I had a lot of questions still in my heart until I began to experience the love of God from Christians. Hearing about God and his love, about Jesus Christ in the church, I began to have a lot of questions in my heart like, "Does the God my husband mentioned, does he really exist?" --these kind of questions. I began to experience the love of Christ through Christians. One of the questions in my heart was if this God could do any miracles in real life? The first miracle I experienced was the changing of my husband's heart. Before coming to Christ, my husband was smoking and drinking and loved a life of pleasure. After coming to Christ, God changed all these things--he stopped smoking and drinking. It seemed as if God had empowered him to change his life style. That's what he said, -- he wanted to honor God with his body.
During my second pregnancy, it was strange. I was pregnant with twins. The doctors said this pregnancy might turn out to be a miscarriage. When the doctors said this, at that time they didn't know if the baby was alive and well, so they wanted to do an ultrasound in order to prepare for an abortion. They did the ultrasound and found it was twins and the babies were alive. About six and a half months later the babies were prematurely delivered. The babies were not healthy. They put them in the nursery for about two months. The first baby died within five days. The second one stayed there for two months and then came home with us. This pregnancy was an exciting one. The firstborn was a girl, and the second one was a boy. Even though we lost one baby, we still had the second one, the boy.
After two weeks at home, however, the baby could not breathe and we needed to take him back to the hospital. We found out that there were more complications. In trying to save his life when he was first born, the hospital had used too much oxygen and it caused something to go wrong with the nerves for sight and hearing. It had been a very difficult time because we had to take him back to the hospital for two days. We then decided to take him to Bangkok for more diagnosis. The doctors said he was totally blind and deaf. We did not want to hear that our boy was deaf and blind! I had a lot of questions because of this. "Why did this happen to us?" My husband said that we should not blame God and that we should thank Him for everything. So I kneeled down and said to God, "Thank you for the blindness and the deafness."
I did not know what was going to happen, so I decided to just trust God. We kept our hope in God and after looking at the baby, there seemed to be no hope. We still were happy and had peace in our heart and expected that maybe God would do something miraculously. It seemed impossible to see a miracle during that time, but it seemed like the boy was there to unite us as husband and wife, and we experienced love in our family. We had peace of mind and faith to stand strong because back then we were living with parents who were not Christians, and they tried to encourage us to try superstitious things and black power. They wanted us to try anything to save the baby, but we kept believing in God. We took care of the boy until he was 3 years old. We had happiness and peace in our family and we enjoyed him very much. He then died at 3 years old and God took him home.
Looking from outside it might have seemed like it had been a time of great unhappiness, but we knew in our family that it was a time of happiness. After that I decided to fully follow Christ and decided to go forward and be baptized.
I then started to have some problems with my mother. My mother asked if I could just continue as I was because she wanted me to remain a silent Christian without water baptism. I challenged my mother by saying, "Please let me follow Christ and be baptized and from now watch my life and see if there is anything worse, or whether following Christ will make my life better." So my mother remained quiet and watched me.
After that time we had started to work at an orphanage with orphans and under-privileged children. Looking back I can see how Christ prepared me to do this kind of work from an early time. We had no idea what to do in the orphanage, but the Lord had prepared us by allowing us to have an unhealthy boy so that we can learn to love unconditionally. Working with the orphanage we have to work with children without parents and many were not lovely. But with God's unconditional love we learned to love them. I have been here for 16 years and now have over 130 children. It is a replacement for the children we lost earlier. Coming out from the heart of the city we moved here in the rural area and now we are not only involved with orphans, but also started a church here and have seen other lives changed. From a very small background, we never imagined that we would be doing this work or that we would be leaders and doing these things for God. I want to thank God for everything that has happened in our lives, and the best thing is to know the love of God, which is still with us today. Another great thing is that my mother, after ten years of watching my life, decided to follow Christ as well.
October, 2015. Thailand.
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