Viraj had his first taste of persecution as a young man—as the one causing it. He and a few friends who were part of an anti-Christian extremist group attacked a mission. They beat pastors and nuns, then burned their belongings and literature.
Viraj was so dedicated to his cause that it seemed certain he would never sway. His story turned out much differently, however, when he chose a path no one could have expected.
Free Education Blinds Young Viraj
As a child, Viraj very much wanted to attend school, but his parents couldn’t afford it. So when the opportunity for a free education from a religious institution came along, Viraj jumped at the chance. There he was taught anti-Christian rhetoric, eventually persuading him that the only way to save his nation was to rid it of believers in Jesus.
The more Viraj persecuted Christians, the more powerful he became. Aside from being notorious within Christian circles as a fierce persecutor, he worked as a prominent religious figure, generating a good income and receiving much honor. But suddenly something happened that was out of his control.
Sickness Opens His Eyes
When Viraj’s wife became ill with a life-threatening heart problem, he took her to the best doctors he could find. But the treatments only helped a little. All Viraj’s money and power weren’t doing much to bring his wife back to health. She became bedridden for three long years, and Viraj grew desperate—so desperate that he sought out a Christian pastor to ask for prayer.
That day was an answer to many believers’ prayers. God was changing Viraj’s heart and directing him to a new path. When the pastor prayed with him, Viraj’s wife began to recover and everything changed. This man, who once hated anything to do with Jesus Christ, finally understood that He offered love and hope.
Viraj’s transformation prompted his entire family to seek the truth about Christ. Soon, each one made their own choice to trust in His love. Although his decision had consequences, including being forced to move because of intimidation from his former extremist partners, Viraj held on to the Lord. The man who spent his life opposing Christians had now joined them, even desiring to share his hope with others.