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India has a long history of beggars.

It’s such a religious country — with traditional religions endorsing gifts of charity to help you “acquire merit” or generate good karma — that begging can be a regular industry. For a man named Ram, it was a full-time job. He carried around a framed picture of a god and asked people to make financial donations. It wasn’t a good life, but it was the only work he could find.

One day the people he asked for money happened to be Dayspring team members. Instead of donating to the god, they asked him: had this god ever answered his prayers? Of course not! If that paper god could answer prayers, Ram wouldn’t be begging for a living! So why, the team asked him, did he continue to serve a powerless god? They invited him to come to a showing of Dayasagar and learn about the one true God, the Creator and Savior of the whole universe.

Ram sat watching our film with great interest. His eyes filled with tears as he watched Jesus betrayed, beaten, and crucified. He knew that Jesus was blameless, and he wondered why Jesus chose to endure suffering rather than to fight against his enemies. He was especially struck by Jesus’ willingness to forgive those who had killed him. Ram had never heard any other person do such a thing.

When the team members explained the story of salvation, Ram knew it was the truth, and he could not reject it. He chose to place his faith in Christ that night. A few days later, he came looking for the film team and told them he had prayed to Jesus about finding a different job — he could no longer go begging with the picture of a false idol!

And he had found a job. He knew, for the first time, the God he served had heard and answered

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Last Published: June 28, 2012 3:58 PM