By Shashi Kumar
Omprakash and his wife, Bala, live in Haryana, India. They have a son named Jeeta and a daughter-in-law named Mukta. Years ago, Omprakash and his family worshipped Durga, the goddess of revenge. They had a temple in their house dedicated to Durga, and each morning before breakfast they presented offerings and said prayers.
Because Omprakash’s family was so passionate about Hindu gods, they were respected by everyone in the community. Many people visited to share their problems with Omprakash, who gave offerings to Durga in hopes of providing relief to those who were struggling. Things were going well for Omprakash’s family until Jeeta and Mukta became worried.
Durga was angry. That’s why Mukta couldn’t conceive and have a baby.
It had been many years since the couple was married, but Mukta was not able to conceive. Omprakash decided that this was because Durga was angry, so he came up with a plan to appease her. An elaborate worship program with sacrifices and other rituals took place every Tuesday. This went on for many months with no success.
Giving up on Durga
Bala really wanted a grandson, so when she realized worshipping Durga wasn’t helping, she decided to take matters into her own hands. She took Mukta to various doctors, quacks and holy men, all to no avail. Eventually, someone told Bala to take Mukta to church on a Saturday. Bible worker Shashi Kumar would pray and Mukta would conceive. Unfortunately, because Saturday is not considered an auspicious day to Hindus, Bala did not follow this advice for many months.
One Saturday, however, Bala was desperate and decided to take Mukta to church without informing her husband. Once they arrived, Bala decided she liked the kind of worship that took place there. She noticed that everyone was happy and there were no scary pictures or idols.
Bala and Mukta continued to come to church each Sabbath. Bible worker Shashi prayed for Mukta, asking God to help her conceive. Soon enough, Bala heard the good news that Mukta was pregnant. The family was overjoyed. Omprakash, who didn’t know about the frequent church visits, considered the pregnancy to be a gift from Durga as a result of his ardent worship.
Mukta soon gave birth to a son. No one dared to tell Omprakash that the baby was a gift from God. Both Mukta and Bala became busy and stopped coming to church.
Eight months later, Bala woke up screaming and thrashing around. Omprakash saw the signs and told everyone that she was possessed by Durga. This was considered a good omen, so villagers began to visit, seeking Bala’s blessing by giving her offerings.
As Omprakash and his family grew rich from the gifts, they forgot about Bala, who was getting worse each day. She would tear her clothes, climb on the roof, shout nonsense, and abuse people who passed by. When the novelty of the goddess messenger in Bala wore off, people began to complain. Omprakash tried his best to remove the spirits, but was unable to. He became depressed. Mukta finally confessed to her husband about going to church. She told him how she prayed with the Bible worker and how God, not Durga, had been the one to bless her with a baby.
After hearing this, Jeeta decided to go to church with Mukta and request prayer for Bala. Shashi agreed to come to their home and pray under one condition. Their Hindu temple would need to be removed.
Because it was his temple, only Omprakash had the right to make this difficult decision. However, as the condition of both parents grew worse, Mukta and Jeeta decided that the temple must go.
Freed from evil spirits
The couple called Shashi, who arranged for the temple to be removed when Omprakash was not home. Once it was gone, Shashi prayed for Bala with Mukta and Jeeta. Bala was soon liberated from the evil spirits.
When Omprakash returned home to find his temple gone, he was angry and did not eat food for many days. He finally stopped when Bala told him about her visits to the church and the true miracle behind Mukta’s pregnancy.
Last month, Bala and Mukta were baptized. They are regular church members. Soon, both of their husbands will be baptized too.