“Life in the army was tough,” Chaminda vividly recalls. He served during Sri Lanka’s civil war that lasted from 1983 until 2009. Several times, he faced serious danger. “What kept me alive during those days, was God’s purpose for my life,” he realizes while looking back.
In the army camp, moral standards were low. “Swearing was the coolest thing to do,” Chaminda says. “I was short-tempered and had no control over my tongue.”
Chaminda’s bad temper continued to affect his life, even after he left the army. “There was no peace in my family because I behaved rudely, even towards my wife,” he notes with regret. Realizing he was destroying his family, Chaminda searched for ways to overcome his bad behavior. Coming from a devout Buddhist family, he started to meditate in temples. It was in vain; his heart remained empty.
One day, while on the road, Chaminda met Pastor Anton. Usually, he would just greet him and go on. This time, Chaminda started to talk to the pastor, telling him about his frustration and troubles. “Pastor Anton said he could help me,” Chaminda continues, “so I invited him to come to my home.”
Using a Project Philip Bible study booklet, Pastor Anton shared the story of Zacchaeus with Chaminda and his family. “I learned that man’s major problem is sin,” Chaminda says. “In Buddhism, there is no concept of God. Here, I found a God who forgives. I came to know Christ as my Savior. I realized that Christ was superior to Buddha.”
Together with his family, Chaminda completed the Project Philip Bible studies and received a Bible. “Everything is different now,” he rejoices. “I do not swear anymore. My attitude toward my wife has changed and I am more responsible than before. I even started sharing the Gospel with other people.”