Sri Lanka Stories from 2015
According to a 2012 study of 174 countries by the World Health Organization (WHO), Sri Lanka has the 4th highest suicide rate among men, and the 9th among women.
These high levels are likely due in no small part to the devastation wreaked by the 26-year civil war that ended in 2009. Many estimate over 100,000 men, along with civilian women and children, were killed.
It is no wonder that the national missionaries Harvest Bridge comes alongside in Sri Lanka feed not only the spiritual needs of their people, but also the emotional and psychological. Below are several stories of such healing.
"Jesus is best.
God loves us and chose us in Christ to be holy and without fault.
My husband recently died. I have two married children. My son received bank loans to conduct his marriage and left my home without communicating with me. I felt hopeless and considered suicide.
At that time, Sister Amy* introduced me to the Hope Center. When I went to the church, they welcomed me and gave me a book about grief, suicide, and one’s purpose in life. After reading this, I had some peace of mind.
A team from the church then came to my home, prayed with me, and shared about Jesus.
After that, I surrendered my life to Jesus Christ. I am now going to church and have taken baptism. My son has also returned and stays in my home, so I feel alone no longer. I am happy God has brought blessings to my family.
With the help of the church, I am growing in the Christian life and giving thanks to God.”
"Prabha* is 23 years old, married and has two children.
Two years ago, her husband fell from a tree, breaking his back and resulting in paralysis. Due to this, Prabha was hopeless, mentally restless and full of sorrows.
During this time, a team from our church met her and gave her a book about mental distress.
After reading this book, her mental health improved and she became eager to go to church and know more about Jesus Christ.
The church team came back to help her many times as well. She now gives thanks to the living God."
"Glory to the name of Jesus Christ!
I give thanks to my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ for the new family life He has given me; from the day I came to know Jesus Christ, He has been leading me in all my life’s ways.
I am married and have three children; my husband was an alcoholic, so there was no peace in our home and we suffered a lot. During that time, I heard about Jesus Christ and started going to church.
I became somewhat more relaxed than normal, but still, many times I tried to commit suicide.
At this critical stage, I met a church team and they gave me some books about how to be at peace and avoid suicidal thoughts. The books talked about the purpose for which we are born.
After I read these books, I was able to overcome these bad thoughts. Now I have turned to Christ and taken baptism.
So once again I give thanks to the Holy God, who brought me as a newborn baby into the world once again."
"Prati* is from the far north in Sri Lanka. She is 30 years old, has two children, and comes from a rich Hindu family.
She has been separated from her husband and children for ten years.
She tried to commit suicide three times. During her third attempt, a prayer team from our church came to her home and counseled her about overcoming anger, fear and loneliness.
We encouraged her by assuring her that God would hear her prayers. She told us our words were aptly spoken [Proverbs: 25:11] and thanked us for touching her heart and changing her life.
She now has peace of mind and is giving thanks to the true God."
"I am Ruth*. I am from Kilinochchi, am 53 years old, and grew up in a Christian family. I have two children. For the past two years I did not go to church.
My father was addicted to alcohol for the past 45 years. Now he is a bed patient. My husband for the past 4 years has been kept in an IDP (Internally Displaced Persons) camp. Therefore I suffered a lot in my life.
Day by day I was crying and thinking of what I would do about my future. During that time, a church team came to our home. They gave me the counseling book called “Assurance of Salvation and Forgiveness”. So I attended fasting-prayer meetings and went to church.
Church members were welcoming, and they gave me counseling for depression. Most importantly, they prayed for me.
My husband was released during that time. I am going to church, and now I have peace in my mind and hope. I am giving thanks to God. Amen.”
Names changed for safety*
Support this work of healing in Sri Lanka, either by giving below or Where Needed Most.