Somesh (not his real name) was the youngest, born & raised in a religious family. It was his parents' dream that he would retain all of their religion. As he grew up, he was very active in his religion, participating in puja (various religious rituals of worship, cleansing, etc.) daily. He even went to Hindi school to learn Hindi & more of tradition. He was very devoted, and enjoyed it.
When Somesh was 16, one day he ate corned beef at school, not knowing it was forbidden in his religion. Later he found out it was wrong, but did not think much on it. About a year later, he mentioned that he had eaten corned beef once. His father became very upset; he said, “What have you done in your life? This is a sin that you have done, that will never be forgiven!” He didn't speak to Somesh for 2 weeks.
From then on, Somesh felt as if he had a curse on his life. He wondered what he would do with his life, since he had been so devoted to his religion. His father told him, “You'd better stop doing everything in Hinduism. You'd better become Christian or Muslim, but never call yourself a Hindu.”
His father's sister was a Christian. She never spoke about Jesus to Somesh, but was a good example to him. She noticed that he was greatly troubled, and prayed for him. He wanted to go with his aunt to church, but was very afraid to ask her. He went to her house one Sunday morning, while she was getting ready, and invited him to go with her.
In this first meeting, he felt as if a great burden was lifted off of him, so he returned the next Sunday. He started attending regularly; he was struggling & searching for answers. Christ was exactly who he needed, so he accepted Christ when he was 17.
Somesh hid his conversion from his family for about 3 years. When his father found out, he said he would not hold him back, but that he should do what he had to do, as long as he didn't tear down anyone's religion.
He wanted to serve the Lord in missions, so he prayed & fasted, and decided to go through the Bible school run by his home church. Still he feared how his father might react. But he came to Somesh's first day of school & to his graduation. It was at this school, also, that Somesh met his wife.
Later, his father became very sick, and because of diabetes, had his leg amputated twice. He was in the hospital for 3 months. Then he came home, but had a stroke from the high blood pressure. He was very weak, and had fallen. Somesh helped him into bed. Then his father asked him to pray for him, and tell him about his God. His did, and his father believed!
His father lived 2 months longer, and told others about Jesus during that time. His family gave him a Hindu funeral, but Somesh knew that he had become a Christian.
Praise God for his grace, his love for his enemies, and his power to draw to himself those who don't know him!
Now, Somesh serves as an evangelist.