India CropGyaneshwar grew up in a rural, religious Hindu family. He followed his father into farming in one of the hottest villages in central India. “My life before Christ was a life of addiction,” he begins his story. Cannabis, opium, tobacco, and alcohol were readily available, and young people were the most affected. “I enjoyed eating and drinking, and my friends did the same—mostly on my money. We would get into fights without any reason. I lost all of my earnings,” he recollects.

Life took an ugly turn when his wife and children fell ill. As was customary, they went to the village witch doctor, but their condition only worsened. “Thoughts of suicide plagued my mind,” Gyaneshwar says. “My wife was diagnosed with a tumor in her stomach.”

During this crisis, Gyaneshwar’s cousin visited and shared the Word of God. He prayed for Gyaneshwar. “I felt a great peace within me,” he says. A local pastor began visiting Gyaneshwar and his family. Pastor Nishant introduced him to the booklet of John’s Gospel and invited him to the church, which was the turning point in his life. The Word of God continued working in Gyaneshwar’s heart as he faithfully attended church and participated in Bible studies.

The words of Jesus in the book of Matthew touched his heart. “Come to me all of you who are tired from the heavy burden you have been forced to carry. I will give you rest” (Matthew 11:28 ERV).

“That was the Word that I needed. I felt so encouraged through this Word and believed in it, my life started to change,” he notes.

God delivered Gyaneshwar from his addictions, and his wife was eventually healed. He admits, “I was always quarreling with my wife and children, but not anymore. My life has changed, and I am free.” God revived their marriage. They find themselves again in love, and their children are at peace.

After becoming a believer, Gyaneshwar’s relatives stopped talking to them and visiting them. But that does not bother them anymore. They have received a new life. He says without flinching, “I’m ready to face any challenge to proclaim the Word of God ‘til my last breath.”

Gyaneshwar is passionate about serving his people and sharing God’s Word with his family and community. His prayer is to reach out to the people in his village who have never heard the name of Jesus. They are caught up in the rituals of black magic and superstition. He says, “I want to proclaim God’s Word in my village, no matter what struggle I have to face.”