Belinda has a smile so bright it is hard to conceive she was beaten for most of her life for simply being alive. On this side of eternity, there is grief, heartache and pain and Belinda knows this better than most.
Belinda was born into a situation that had no desire or place for her. She is the daughter of a mistress and the moment she was born was discarded by her mother – simply left with her father and his wife.
From the marks left on her body, her “family” never cared for her and beat her severely from the time she was little throughout her life. She was kept and used as a slave, forced to do adult chores that her little body simply could not keep up with.
Frequently she would fail at these adult tasks and was beaten and forced to live outside on her own for over 30 days at a time. No food was given to her, she had to beg or eat from the dump. Daily she was told she was worthless and to further prove the point her family would often strip her of her clothes to serve as an embarrassment.
Belinda was once beaten by her stepmother with her spiked heel causing blindness in her one eye. The scars on her body are frequent and deep but the pain goes much deeper than skin level.
Belinda tells of pushing through her days numb from the agony of her pain.
Through God’s loving provision a relative found her one day while she was begging in the market place and told her of African Vision of Hope. Belinda came on as a boarder and has begun to find a new life for herself. Belinda is now feeling strong enough to share her story through hearing the testimonies of the other girls that have faced similar struggles.
Belinda told us, “I never knew anything about a God that loved me growing up, I was only taught about evil, and I did not know Christ during those days.” Through African Vision of Hope not only are we serving to physically rescue these vulnerable children, but Our Father does know these children each by name and as we shine the light into their present darkness – He is revealed, and his redemption plan is revealed, and through His Love and Grace, real healing begins.
Belinda is such a testimony of the power of God’s love. She is so thankful to all of the people that have make the work of African Vision of Hope a reality. Her personality shines through her smiles and you see the Amazing Grace of our Savior working in this young lady’s life.
“Only the living can praise you as I do today. Each generation tells of your faithfulness to the next. “ Isaiah 38:19