Bahula’s stomach growled with the angry pain of being completely empty. It had been days since she had eaten, but that didn't matter to her aunt and uncle. They still expected the little girl to complete all the family chores, and they would still beat her if she didn't.
By now, Bahula had resigned herself to her whole life being a hardship. Her mother had died when she was just three years old, and her father, overcome by depression, died shortly after.
Without their parents, Bahula’s siblings parted ways: her brothers to pursue livelihoods and her sisters to marry. They left Bahula alone, so the girl’s aunt and uncle took her in—but they didn’t have any love to offer the orphan girl.
They enrolled her in school, but they valued her labour too much to let her attend regularly. Even when Bahula did go to school, she struggled to study at home. As years went by, Bahula began to know life only as sorrow and abuse.
Then, her brothers and sisters returned to take her home with them, but they had left so long ago that she didn’t even recognize them and refused to go.
When she was small, Bahula told them, no one had cared about her. Now their aunt and uncle were her parents, and she wouldn’t leave them.
Her siblings, puzzled and concerned that she wanted to stay with her abusive relatives, had no choice but to hope someone else could change Bahula’s mind.
A Steadfast Love
One day on her way to school, Bahula met a tutor who worked at the local Bridge of Hope centre. Sensing the tutor’s kindness, the girl shared her struggles, and the Bridge of Hope staff decided to meet her aunt and uncle.
While there, the staff shared the Gospel with the family and asked them to send Bahula to the Bridge of Hope centre so she could receive a proper education and become a better person. As they spoke with the staff, Bahula’s aunt and uncle began to feel badly about the way they had treated their niece.
As they learned more about Jesus, they began offering Bahula love and affection. Soon, they even let her go to the Bridge of Hope centre and attend Sunday school. Bahula began to thrive in her studies and also learned about hygiene, good manners and the Bible.
Having learned about forgiveness, she reconciled with her brothers and sisters, and now the little girl who had no one is embraced by a loving family—including a Heavenly Father who will never leave her.