God’s Angel: Pranitha Timothy

Pranitha Timothy is a soft-spoken Indian woman who  has led over 50 rescue operations to free slaves in Chennai, India. She  has survived a brain tumor and a number of run-ins with violent slave  owners, and says God has cleared the path for her to fight injustice in  the world today.
According to the website for The American Anti-Slavery Group, there  are an estimated 27 million slaves in the world today. As the director  of aftercare for International Justice Mission in the Province of  Chennai, Timothy and her teams have rescued 4,000 slaves in the last  nine years. She has regularly risked her life for these forced laborers,  never knowing for sure if she will see her husband and young daughter  again, and she gives God all of the credit for her success.
God goes before us into the places of darkness and makes the paths  straight for us to bring rescue,” Timothy told attendees of Willow Creek  Association’s Global Leadership Summit on Friday.
Several years ago, for example, her team discovered a rice mill where  dozens of slaves were being forced to work. IJM organized a rescue  mission with government authorities, but the slave owner was tipped off  and fled with his slaves before the rescue team arrived.
The IJM team began praying, and shortly after a truck filled with the  slaves was located just 14 miles away. The slaves were then returned to  the mill, and authorities told them to go into the building to identify  their belongings, but when they did so they were surrounded by a mob of  slave owners waiting to ambush them inside.
Timothy was with the slaves when this happened, and says those inside  the mill began to pray again. Women and children were screaming, but  Timothy says God confused the mob and, after four hours, she and all the  slaves left the mill safely.
Rescue missions are full of both expectation and anxiety for IJM  workers, Timothy told The Christian Post on Monday, and it brings them  joy to see how happy the laborers are when they are reunited with their  families and returned to their homes.
After a successful rescue operation, she says, the organization helps  connect the laborers to social services, though much of what they need  is help dealing with the emotional impact of their experience.
“The most critical, key thing is to help them overcome the trauma of  just being in captivity, of being in a place where they’ve been  physically abused, their dignity totally taken away from them,” she  said.
During Friday’s summit, Timothy shared how God called her to risk her  life for others. While working to complete her master’s degree in  social work, she felt called to fight injustice after her college’s  chapel speaker read Isaiah chapter 42, which talks about a servant of  the Lord who will “bring justice to the nations.”
A few weeks later, though, she was diagnosed with a brain tumor and  was forced to have surgery. The surgery resulted in a successful removal  of the tumor, but it also resulted in a loss of her ability to speak,  swallow, and hear out of her right ear, though her voice eventually came  back.
After two years God gave me this voice – feeble, and yet powerful in  His hands,” she said, but the restoration of her voice is not the  greatest miracle she feels has happened in her life.
“The greatest miracle is that God can transform my heart,” she said.  “Before He gave me this vision and this healing, He changed me.”
Timothy and her siblings grew up on a mission compound that had no  schools on it, so her parents sent her to get an education at a boarding  school.
Compared to the wealthy families of her classmates, however, she was  unhappy with the little money her family had. She was also unhappy with  her physical appearance, because she had black patches on her skin from a  bad reaction to an injection she received in the sixth grade.
“On one hand I struggled with my identity of being a kid who did not  have enough money like the rest of the kids, and on the other hand I had  all these patches on my face. I was very embarrassed about how I  looked,” said Timothy.
During her time in boarding school she also grew apart from her  family, with whom she visited only about once a year. She was angry that  her parents’ work as missionaries kept the family apart, and eventually  she “hated anything to do with Christianity.”
While in college she earned the nickname “CC” for being “cold and  calculated.” She was harsh with the freshman students – she enjoyed  watching them cry – and broke almost “every possible rule,” she says.  Eventually she was expelled by school administrators.
Today, however, she is a changed woman. She is full of compassion and  courage, and she believes the work she does every day is a miracle.
“I think every single day I see what God does, and I’m amazed …  because humanly it’s not possible to do what we do, and it’s only  through God’s strength,” she said.
IJM’s mission is to rescue slaves, the sexually exploited and other  individuals who are the victims of violent oppressors. IJM attorneys,  investigators and aftercare workers are currently working with local  officials in 13 different nations in order to bring justice and lasting change to those regions.

Brain Tumor Survivor Rescues Slaves in India



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