Ann serves as a doctor in Chad, meeting people in their homes and also treating them and their children for mental illness and epilepsy.
Faith* wanted me to help her get an abortion. She was about four months pregnant and her husband was away in another country and had been for two years. He’d left her caring for her mother-in-law in the town where I worked. Obviously, I wasn’t going to help her get an abortion even if I had known how. But we talked of the new life within her, forgiveness and the good news of Jesus Christ and I prayed for her. She said my prayer changed her and she decided to keep the baby. Her mother-in-law didn’t make her life easy, passing lots of rumours about her. She was afraid she would be killed if her family found out. I continued speaking to her about the gospel. We even spent a fun afternoon looking at abdominal exercises hoping to hide the pregnancy longer. Finally, she went to stay with a stepsister 150 miles away and then with a Chadian lady 200 miles away to deliver at a district hospital. Then what to do about the baby girl? Amazingly, a pastor and his wife decided to take on baby Ann as their own when they heard she had nowhere to go.
That was three years ago. Faith became a Christian during the time when she was in such a challenging situation, as she contemplated her sin before God and wondered how her baby could be saved. Since then, she has become a different woman, more patient and forgiving and much calmer. After prayer, even her mother-in-law has changed. Her husband returned to Chad and accepted her, even after hearing she had a child out of wedlock. She praises God for her salvation. She is eager to read the Bible. Her challenges remain. Her husband has no job. Neither he or his mother have believed. But people notice that she has changed although she does not have the courage to declare clearly how that change has come about.
Meeting people like Faith, sharing life with them – both the ups and downs, is all part of working in Chad.
* Name changed for security reasons