The Promise of a Mansion

Rachel Chimits

In a fairytale life gone wrong, one young Filipino woman finds a true rescuing hero in her heavenly Father.

Krystal’s parents came to her and explained that she could finish high school, but that was all. She needed to find work to help support the family.

In the Philippines, this scenario was nothing strange, particularly for low-income families. At age 18, Krystal dutifully started work in Quezon, one of many poor, young women toiling in minimum wage jobs.

Everything changed when a handsome man approached her. He told her she was beautiful, striking among all the others, and he invited her into the wealthy, upperclass circles of his life.

A fairytale in the making…right? 

The Tale Twists

The Cinderella-esque story where love overcomes all socioeconomic pressures, however, started off slightly askew as Krystal’s wealthy boyfriend promised over and over to propose but explained that he needed to visit her family first.

He really should spend some time around her father, meet her mother, before they got married. He needed to set something up at his work before he could travel anywhere. Delay after delay arose, even as he pushed the physical boundaries of their relationship.

Krystal gave inch by inch. After all, he swore he loved her. He promised that he’d marry her.

Then she found out that she was pregnant.

“You need to talk to my parents. Please, you said you would.”  

He conceded and went to meet her family. Their small home was in an area that would qualify as a ghetto, and the most well-off relative was Krystal’s aunt who owned a convenience store. Whatever they lacked materially, they made up for with loyalty and care for one another, but they couldn’t offer a sumptuous meal or impressive business connections.

Krystal anxiously waited to hear how the meeting went.

The silence stretched on and would never be broken. He didn’t come back or attempt to contact her again.  

The Waves of Life

Months later, Krystal gave birth to a beautiful baby girl. Being a single mother was tough and never a position she’d imagined being caught in.

It was hard to look men in the eye and trust what they said. It was harder yet to believe anyone would want her, after everything that had happened. Who would love a little girl who wasn’t theirs?

At 19 years old, Krystal struggled to imagine a life alone or see where God was in her present circumstances.

Two years later, she met a man named Zacharias, a tricycle-taxi driver. Hardly a glamourous occupation, but he somberly promised to take care of her and her daughter. They married, and Krystal soon gave birth to a second baby girl.

As the Philippines’ economy has improved in the last few years, however, it has hiked up the cost of living. For poorer families like Krystal’s, this was more than just an inconvenience or a pinch on the budget. It was a blow, and Krystal desperately took up sewing clothes for sale to add a little extra income.

Then their daughters became ill, and medical bills piled on top of the already insurmountable-seeming demands on their straining income.

Frustrated, Krystal went to her church’s Bible study, led by World Challenge trainers, determined to find someone who could give her answers to hard questions. 

What happens when your dreams and life go sour?

A Timeless Anticipation

While saving and micro-business classes are important practical steps toward a better future for Krystal and her family, the World Challenge workers simultaneously wanted to address the heart of her fears and pain: Is God good?

As a first step, they introduced her to a radical idea: God’s blessings might not include wealth, but it would always include his constant presence and provision for daily needs. 

No abandonment. No broken promises.

God promised her a mansion in heaven, illuminated by his eternal presence and delight, and he would never back out of that pledge. 

No matter what happened today or tomorrow or the day after, she hadn’t lost the opportunity to experience God’s goodness. As she participated in the Bible studies and community workshop, she felt like her perspective was gradually growing and changing.

“Prosperity is not measured in material things, but in the peace of mind that God gives.” Then she added, “The wisdom of contentment, like Paul explained in his epistles.”

She is learning more about how God has given her stewardship of her life and the things around her.

As she faithfully cares for the gifts God has given her, she also is trusting that he will provide, that he loves her, her husband and their daughters very much. “God still has a plan for me and my family.”