Shalom lives in Kitintale, when we first met her she was a shy, timid woman who hid herself in her busy work keeping house and making snacks to sell. She would avoid eye contact, even when we bought snacks from her shop and invited her to our weekly meetings. A history of rejection from her family made her closed, bitter and resentful towards God and those around her, including her husband and neighbours. This was made worse because she kept her emotions bottled up; even her Pastor wondered what he could do to help her ’’one day you will die of anger my daughter,’’ he lamented. Shalom was inwardly bitter with God and resentful toward others due to her experiences with people.
As we prayed about her, bought snacks from her and invited her for the Discipleship and Life Group meetings, she surprised us by joining one Discipleship meeting in which she asked many questions as we shared the love of Jesus with her. Gradually, Shalom began to discover the heart of God as her caring Father and learned how to pray and open her life to His influence. She regained strength and hope in her relationship with the Lord and began to share her testimony with us. At the same time, her leadership skills began to flourish. She learned that even though she was rejected by her family, her eternal life in Jesus was much more precious than any earthly thing.
When we selected four interns for our apprentice programme, Shalom was one of those chosen; her only worry was that Walter, her husband would not permit her. To her surprise, he willingly gave his support and in November 2019 she joined Every Life. Together, the apprentices have learned a variety of different skills; teaching the Word, business and income generating activities, communication/public speaking, marriage/conflict resolution and teamwork. “During this Internship period, I encountered the Holy Spirit in a way I’d never known Him, I became a true Disciple of Jesus and a beloved child of the Father; I found love and hope. I learned to forgive and receive correction, I changed so much in such a short time, that my husband thought I was another person. He told me ‘You must be learning good things from Every Life, I feel more respect and love from you, you no longer hold grudges against me and you are at peace with our neighbours!’’’
After the internship period, Shalom became the leader of the Kitintale Discipleship group and a Discipleship Champion in her community; she facilitates the meetings each Monday along with other growing leaders in the group. “Thanks to the Every Life family and the partners who sponsored our Apprenticeship Programme, I am now a joyful woman and I have found my true identity and purpose in my relationship with Jesus!’’