Agnes dreamed of building a better life for her daughters but she wasn’t sure where to begin. School fees were a luxury the family could not afford. But then, while attending her local church, she heard a message that inspired her to take her future into her own hands. And this is what happened.
‘Scarcity of food and lack of finances and support made my children drop out of school and I became worried about their future,’ shares Agnes, who lives in Sierra Leone. ‘My discouragement and frustration at life never went unnoticed.’
But one Sunday at church, an opportunity arose.
Agnes’s pastors had taken part in training by Tearfund’s local partners and were running Bible study groups for their congregation.
‘I came to know about the uses of resources and the importance of my relationship with God, man, environment and myself,’ shares Agnes, who signed up to the group along with her daughters.
‘We sat together and came up with a vision for life as a family and set our priorities. Education is at the top for my two older daughters who have always desired to be nurses.’
With this goal in mind, Agnes was able to make a plan to set her vision into action. And the church continued to help her by looking at practical steps she could take. Like setting up her own business.
The church supported Agnes by helping her apply for a small loan from a savings group so that she could start her business. Agnes began selling vegetables, firewood and cooking condiments.
Life and life to the full
‘The business went on for a year, and the following year my daughters applied for enrollment into the college and they were admitted in the faculty of nursing. I paid their first year fees and I developed the passion and zeal to do more business, as I had already paid off the loan,’ says Agnes.
‘After three years in college, my daughters have completed their courses this year and are currently working with the government as nurses assigned to hospitals.
‘I now feel fulfilled in life as I see my children growing as career persons with good characters. I thought I was a failure and my children were not going to make it, but now they have. I thought I would not live to see this day, but now I have seen it. I thought that God did not love me, but now I know he does.’
Jesus came to bring life and life to the full (John 10:10). Agnes’s story is a wonderful reminder of how the local church can come alongside people to help them achieve the fullness that God intended for us.