Bugiri, Uganda I was recently in Uganda and met Joseph and his wife, Asia. They have a powerful testimony I want to share with you.
Joseph used to be the town drunk. He’d go drinking most nights and not return until 2 a.m., leaving his wife to worry. He hurled insults at people on the road. At times he would hit his wife. He wouldn’t leave money for her to buy things the family needed. He didn’t help with the garden, the children, or household chores. His attitude was that his wife must serve him any way he wanted.
Joseph didn’t seem like an angry man. He was just treating his wife the way men in his culture had for generations—like a servant. He didn’t know there was another way.
But all that changed when Pastor Richard invited him to a Fathers’ Club meeting at the church. Pastor Richard had been through training with Bright Hope staff and was excited to get his community involved—even if they weren’t church members.
At the club, Joseph learned what the Bible says about being a man. He learned how he should act as a leader, how he should love his wife and children, how he should spend his money, how to grow enough food to sell, how to raise goats and chickens, and more.
He and his wife, pregnant with their third child, learned about pre-natal care and safe pregnancy, and even received a Mama Kit.
When Asia went to deliver her baby, Mama Kit in hand, the nurses were amazed at all the nice items she had ready for the delivery. Asia said they treated her with respect and even held her baby after delivery—something they had not done for her past two births. Asia had such a sense of pride and dignity as she reflected on that time with us.
And Joseph had learned so much from the Fathers’ Club. He told his wife he planned to live differently as he put what he had learned into practice.
Honestly, as we heard this story, it was hard not to be skeptical. Those were some huge changes to make! Well, his wife testified that it was all true. She said going to the Fathers’ Club completely changed her husband.
Now, Joseph plays with the children, helps in the garden, leaves money for her to buy things, and takes time to talk to her. She feels loved by him and she loves him in return.
We asked him why he went to the Fathers’ Clubs. Do you know what he said? Because the pastor invited him to come. We asked him why he changed so fast. He simply said: “I learned the right way and so I did it. I just did not know before.”
Extreme poverty, generational and cultural attitudes, all of this was stacked against him. Yet, he just had to hear the truth to change. To me, it was a miracle.
Interestingly, we then visited a church full of couples who each testified of the changes that came because of what they learned at the Fathers’ or Grandmothers’ Clubs. Their stories varied somewhat, but all ended the same. At the clubs, they learned what the Bible says about family life. They learned about new ways to live and love. Then, empowered by the Holy Spirit, they went home and changed.
It was a clear testament to God’s faithfulness to His Word and reminded me of Isaiah 55:11; “So shall my word be that goes out from my mouth; it shall not return to me empty, but it shall accomplish that which I purpose, and shall succeed in the thing for which I sent it.”
For Joseph and Asia, this Scripture is alive and active in their lives. This was not just a life change but the start of a new family legacy with God truly at the center.