WILLS POINT, TX – Gospel for Asia (GFA World) founded by Dr. K.P. Yohannan – Discussing Janya & her village, at risk from the absence of a toilet, & Gospel for Asia constructing outdoor toilets that bring relief & eternal hope to many.
As night fell, Janya and her daughter traipsed through the mud. They had waited all day, and they were tired of holding it. Finally, they found a place in the bushes where they could go to the bathroom.
Going out at night was never comfortable, especially when rains flooded the land during monsoon season. But they had no other private place to go to the bathroom. Janya and her family, along with almost everyone else in their village, had no toilet at home. That made it necessary for the villagers to find faraway places to relieve themselves at daybreak. But, like thousands of other women in Asia who desire privacy, Janya and her daughter would go in the evening, risking attack from wild animals—or callous men.
The lack of toilets in Janya’s village didn’t just pose safety risks; it was a health risk. Children often relieved themselves in the farm fields, contaminating public areas. As a result, many people grew ill with health conditions such as jaundice, cholera, polio and paralysis.
Janya and her family knew Jesus was watching over them as they traveled at night to relieve themselves. What’s more, He had given them eternal life—no dangers in the dark could steal that from them. But most of their fellow villagers didn’t have this security. Amidst their vulnerability to nighttime predators and to disease, they didn’t know there was a God who cared about them.
Family Gives Land for Toilet
The local Gospel for Asia pastor, Vidur, understood the villagers’ struggle. He himself had been ministering in the area for more than 10 years. Knowing people’s lives were at risk whenever they used the fields as their toilet, he wished there were a way to help them.
Then he found out Gospel for Asia had started a program to promote sanitation in underprivileged areas. Excited about the opportunity to help his community, he asked his leaders to build four toilets in the village.
That’s when Janya and her husband, Lalan, gladly offered some of their land for one toilet.
In January 2013, when the villagers saw a concrete outhouse rise out of the dusty ground, they poured out their gratitude to Pastor Vidur and the church.
“[This] saved the lives of people from illness,” shared one villager.
Even the village leader expressed thanks. “[The church] is always concerned about the need of people and works hard for a brilliant life for the community,” he said.
Now, instead of risking their safety while tromping through mud to find some bushes, Janya and her family walk to the concrete structure on their own property to use the restroom. From their house they can see others coming to use the much-needed facility, too.
Constructing Outdoor Toilets Leads Man to Church
Overjoyed to see people coming to his property to use the toilet, Lalan often has conversations with them.
One day Rana, Lalan’s relative, came by for a visit. When he saw the concrete structure, which bore a sign with the church’s name, he asked Lalan about it. Glad for an opportunity to share, Lalan told Rana about Jesus, the God who restores lives, and how the church longed to help bring restoration to the community through projects like constructing outdoor toilets.
A few days later, as Rana was watching one of his family members suffer with illness, he remembered Lalan’s words about Jesus’ power to heal.
He decided to visit Lalan’s church, where Pastor Vidur prayed for healing. When Rana went home, his family member was already healed. Now Rana joins the congregation for worship services each week, even though he lives about 50 miles away.
A Gift With Eternal Impact
Rana isn’t the only visitor who has been introduced to Jesus after seeing the toilet. The gift opened up conversations between Lalan and two other families, and they are now following Christ.
Through this gift, the health of Lalan’s family and their neighbors is improving, and they are much less likely to contract life-threatening illnesses. Most importantly, people who didn’t know Christ are learning about Him as they talk to a family that’s excited to proclaim His goodness.
Since the toilet on Lalan’s property was constructed, Pastor Vidur’s congregation has grown from 68 to 115 people, and Gospel for Asia has been able to finish constructing outdoor toilets in three other parts of the village, so people will continue to hear about the God who cares about their safety, their health and, even more importantly, their souls.
You can help bring Christ’s love to more people in Asia by providing an outdoor toilet to a village like Lalan’s.
*Names of people and places may have been changed for privacy and security reasons. Images are Gospel for Asia stock photos used for representation purposes and are not the actual person/location, unless otherwise noted.
Source: Gospel for Asia Featured Article, Welcome to Their Toilet
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