After the trauma of losing her daughter, Mary, to an illness, Bethany was kidnapped by militants and held for a month. But thanks to your prayers and provision, Bethany has received trauma healing and a new home! Please continue to pray for her.
Bethany, outside her new home, says the trauma centre ‘brought joy, hope and reassurance of God’s love for me’
“Thank you for allowing God to use you to mend broken hearts,” says Bethany*, a Nigerian Christian who’s rediscovering joy after different incidents left her ‘heartbroken and hopeless’.
You may remember Mary*, whose story we featured earlier this year (Prayer Diary, May/June). In February 2023, shortly after Fulani militants released her from captivity, Mary died from an unrelated illness. But she’d attended a trauma counselling programme run by Open Doors partners, and Bethany saw the difference it made. “I remember when my daughter attended the healing programme, she came back full of hope and love. Everyone in our community kept talking about how she changed,” she shares.
“Life in the hands of my abductors is an experience I will never forget” Bethany
Sadly, for her mother, Bethany, the trauma wasn’t over: four months later she was kidnapped by militants while working the fields on her farm. “Life in the hands of my abductors is an experience I will never forget,” she says. “All I did was cry day and night and pray to God to rescue me. I felt the pain my daughter Mary felt when she was kidnapped last year. I kept asking God, ‘Why me?’ I was still hurting over the rape of my daughter by these wicked men, then the pain of losing her just when I thought God was wiping my tears. All these events left me heartbroken and hopeless.”
When she was released a month later, Open Doors partners invited her to attend the same trauma-care programme that Mary attended.
“This one week I have spent in the centre has brought joy, hope, and reassurance of God’s love for me,” Bethany says. “The teachings were so practical, and I felt the programme was designed just for me. Listening to other women share their stories helped me know that I am not alone. The best part of the programme was taking my pains to the cross.
“I dropped everything that made me sad at the feet of Jesus, and I felt peace and joy. If I did not attend, I don’t think I would be alive today. But God is not done with me yet. Thank you.”
“I dropped everything that made me sad at the feet of Jesus, and I felt peace and joy” Bethany
And you weren’t done with Bethany either! Before her death, Mary asked that funds given by local partners would go towards a plot of land, so her family could have a new home. Further funds were given to help build the house, the construction of which continued even whilst Bethany was in captivity; the builders continued in faith that Bethany would regain her freedom.
After completing the trauma programme, she was taken to her new home. Breaking down in tears, she said, “I lack the best words to say thank you.” She praised God, saying, “Father, all things are possible with You; we are grateful to You, God. Because all things are possible with You.”
*Names changed for security reasons
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