Help the Poor Heal From Trauma

David’s life and relationships had become a place of abuse and trauma, in which his family felt the crushing effects.

David vulnerably confessed, “I abused my wife physically almost every day. I got home drunk, and my children feared speaking to me. I was a leader but not exemplary to my family or the people I had been trusted to lead.” 

Not only was David’s family wounded and broken, but they were also trapped in extreme poverty.  

David’s search to escape poverty led him to find work in a sugar factory as the head of the weeding team. He grew in leadership and became the director of the camp where the workers lived. But he didn’t have the leadership skills or coping mechanisms needed to manage such a large group of people.  He was broken and began to hurt those around him.  

the trauma of growing up poor

David frequently erupted with angry outbursts when the workers didn’t follow his instructions. He used his position to control the narrative, and when the workers confronted him for abusing his wife, he fired them. Eventually, the workers began to form a plot to harm him.   

David recalled: “Someone tipped me off that the camp was conspiring to lure me out of the house at night and either kill me or hurt me badly. When I shared this with a friend I trust, he advised me to pray, but I didn’t know where or how to begin. So, he introduced me to the Fathers’ Club, and that is when my transformation began. I learned about compassion, praying, and living in harmony with my wife. Those men at the church became my brothers. They helped me reconcile with my wife and children. I even stopped drinking.  

Jesus Heals the Trauma of Growing Up Poor 

Later that year, after joining the Married Couples Fellowship, David and his wife gave their lives to Jesus Christ. And He started healing their trauma. As he transformed their lives, restoration, and healing began in David’s home and affected his leadership at work. They joined a Savings for Life group and learned how to make decisions together such as how much money to save and how much to spend. 

David rejoiced: “My life has changed for good. When the community at the camp saw my transformation, they were encouraged. We reconciled, and everyone is a friend now. The company has given me the authority to allow them to keep animals here. They are keeping goats and pigs. Many are following my example by joining or creating their own savings clubs. A few have followed me to church and given their lives to Christ.” 

David continues to grow in his relationship with Christ. As a result, there is hope again for his family. His three children attend school, and his dreams are in sight. Together with his wife, they plan to build a home on their land. They have also begun raising pigs enabling them to pay their children’s school fees. 

David gives glory to God for restoring his heart and home: “I thank God for his church, it has transformed me, and God is using me as an example for his people. Who am I to earn this? Yet I was almost an abomination.” 

What can you do?

You can partner with Bright Hope and make stories of transformation like David’s possible. Remember: “We are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them” (Ephesians 2:10).  

Malia Rodriguez
Malia Rodriguez

Malia loves serving as a Copywriter for Bright Hope, where she has the privilege to share how God is working among the vulnerable and caring for the extreme poor around the world. As a homeschool mom, Malia strives to develop in her kids compassionate, generous, and caring hearts. Malia and her husband, Matt, live in the Washington, DC area with their son and daughter.