Posted by: janpierce | January 29, 2013

My Sister, Bilahi

Image   Several years ago I had the opportunity to teach several Bible classes to fourteen women in a training center outside of Hyderabad. These women were finishing their last weeks of a six month training when I arrived. I was only with them for three weeks, but I had the chance to interview each one and I’ve never forgotten them. My friend Grace, who we support in women’s work in Karnataka was one of the fourteen.

Bilahi is another. Bilahi works for the Church of North India in Assam. There were seven girls in Bilahi’s family. Her mother died when she was very young and her father died in 2003. She and her sisters worked as “slaves” growing up. They cleaned and cooked for other families, made their own clothes and never had enough to eat. Bilahi was able to attend school part time, but never had time to study. Sometimes she was able to sell clothing she stitched in a neighboring community.

Bilahi worked hard to learn about God and was able to attend several years of Bible school. She now oversees the care of the people of seventy-four small village churches. She travels by bicycle in all kinds of weather, teaching Bible, health care, Christian lifestyle and encouraging children to attend school. She also teaches self-help programs such as candle-making and how to save money in the same kinds of women’s groups that Grace leads in Hubli. These groups give women opportunity to begin small businesses to support their families.

Bilahi loves Psalm 23. She says she loves that God is “all the time leading and comforting.” She says she has no fear of suffering. Bilahi is hard-working and serious. When it was time to go home Roger and I were able to meet a need for her. Her travel bag had broken and we were able to give her a small suitcase we didn’t need. She cried. She was so grateful that the Lord had, once again, met her needs.

Bilahi knows what it means to go hungry even now. She lives on 1,000 rupees per month which is about $20. It isn’t enough. Teams India is sending living expenses to help Bilahi do her job, blessing the people of the CSI churches in remote villages of Assam.

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Responses

  1. Thank you for sharing this, Jan! Reminds us to pray for these faithful ones who daily take up their cross (suffering). So glad Teams India is helping her and others like her!
    Diana Phillips

    • She was such a sweet, sincere young woman. Right now she’s doing an outreach to the Bodo people group and one of the men from the training center is visiting. Then will encourage her, I know.

  2. Hello,
    I am new to your site, and was very interested in this story. I am planning a trip to India this year to welcome my 7th grandchild. My son and his wife teach at Woodstock school in Mussoorie. I lived in Asia for two years but have never been to India. I would like to take Christian literature in Hindi language but am not sure how or whereI will obtain them.

    • You can purchase literature in India once you’re there. In Hyderabad there is the OM store where Hindi materials are available.


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