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India

A Little Light for India

Rachel Chimits
March 27, 2019

Numbers of abandoned or neglected children are rising, and authorities are constricting who can help.

Children are one of the most vulnerable populations in India, and the country is home to an estimated 30 million orphans with countless more who are left unattended while their parents work.

Local laws sharply restrict foster and adoption agencies while increasing numbers of children fall prey to criminals on the black market who hunt for cheap child labor.

Others are lost when their parents are blackmailed into given up their child to racketeers looking to make a tidy profit off sex trafficking.

India's Water of Life

Rachel Chimits
March 7, 2019

One man’s terrible illness becomes a story of hope to his entire village.

According to an international survey and study organization, “Diseases due to poor drinking-water access, unimproved sanitation, and poor hygiene practices cause 4.0 percent of all deaths and 5.7 percent of all disability or ill health in the world.”

For perspective, 4 percent of the world’s 7.7 billion people equals over 300 million deaths due to bad water. This is compounded by pollution coming from fertilizers and pesticides in farming areas.

A Town in India Renewed

Rachel Chimits
February 28, 2019

“And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not lose heart.” Galatians 6:9 NKJV

The village would remind most of us of a maze, but one with mud walls as high as a man’s head. Only these walls are part of people’s homes.

During the heavy seasonal rains, the houses would erode to expose straw and sticks used to reinforce the mud. The walkways become shin-deep sludge, and in the doorways, children poke out their heads to watch the rain. 

In India, many schools charge for primary education, so these children can’t go and will instead follow their parents out into the fields each day. 

The Wisdom of Ages in India

Rachel Chimits
January 29, 2019

As one woman in India learns about God, her entire village is changing. 

“Let the wise hear and increase in learning, and the one who understands obtain guidance, to understand a proverb and a saying, the words of the wise and their riddles. The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge...” (Proverbs 1:5-7a ESV)

It’s easy sometimes to forget how many scientific and medical advances were the work of men and women who were seeking God and the pattern of his fingerprints in nature and our own bodies.

How easily we can lose sight of the almighty God behind technology and intellectual institutions. 

Similarly, people who have come to know Christ from another religion have not always followed the thread of their new faith into the ordinary, everyday aspects of their lives. 

Becoming India's "Untouchable" and Beloved

Rachel Chimits
January 24, 2019

Freedom led to an act of kindness that brought a community together in the most unexpected way.

Hinduism has approximately 33 million gods, and nearly every aspect of nature or people’s life has a god or goddess associated with it. 

In addition to nitya, daily mantras and offerings, good Hindus must observe naimittika, festivals that require special offerings or observances. As a family experiences trouble or someone becomes ill, kamya are costly demonstrations of faith—a pilgrimage to special shrines or bathing in the Ganges River—to garner good favor with specific gods. 

Heart Revival Among India’s Widows

Rachel Chimits
December 12, 2018

God is setting India’s widows free from the weight of prejudice.

To lose a spouse is a hard blow to the heart; but in India, the social ramifications can make it even harsher.

One young Indian woman explains how widows are treated: “She is stigmatised as a woman who has failed to safeguard her husband’s life. Traditional beliefs hold that her husband is God and when he dies, she is expected to be grief-stricken, everlastingly, for the rest of her life.”

Widows are viewed by India’s society as those who have lost what gives them value, not a view that God takes as the “Father of the fatherless and protector of widows...” —Psalms 68:5a ESV