Pray constantly” (1 Thess. 5:17, RSV). When I was six years old, we lived on an isolated ranch in Mato Grosso. I was extremely saddened by my father’s sudden death.
One day a girl, a little older than I was, and her grandmother came to spend a few days with us. The girl taught me how to kneel, close my eyes, and pray. It was a great comfort for me to be able to talk to God.
After my father’s death, our life became very difficult. One day after I had cut wood with the axe, I stood under a tree and asked the Lord to send me a Christian companion. This was my prayer many times.
I contracted typhus when I was 16 years old and was very ill. My mother prayed and vowed that if I got better, I would go to the Adventist academy to become a worker. By God’s grace, I recovered.
At age 19, my brother and I went to our college in Sâo Paulo. We did not know how to get there, and the big city scared us. I prayed constantly on the way. God was protecting us because when we stepped off the train, a kind gentleman showed us how to find the bus that would take us to the school, and we arrived without much trouble.
My joy was great when, at the school, I met a lad also from Mato Grosso. Though I has seen him before, we did not know one another. He became my friend. My prayers had been answered. Many years later, after finishing our studies through the sponsorship of literature evangelism, we married. When my husband Alfredo Barbosa de Souza graduated, we went to work in Cuiabá. While there, my little nine-month-old daughter developed a high fever due to urine retention. The physician prescribed a medication that had to be given every hour, but at dawn, she had not improved much. I went to the backyard, knelt under a mango tree, and prayed to the Lord. The idea to give my child corn-fuzz tea and place her in a basin of very warm water came to mind. Soon she was well.
When I was 45 years old, I contracted the terrible, savage fire illness. I was covered with boils and in excruciating pain. The doctors had given up on me and said I was a hopeless case. Still I fought to live because I had four small children who needed me. On a Friday afternoon, with much difficulty, I turned in bed and said to the Lord, “I know that the way I am, I am no good to my children or to my husband. May your will be done, Lord!” That same afternoon my husband found the remedy that brought me healing, and with that remedy we have helped many people, even today. At 83 years of age, I continue to prepare the remedy for all those who are victims of this terrible illness.
God has heard my prayers for my children, my grandchildren, and my great-grandchildren. God has been with me during 35 years of service. He has been by my side as I went Ingathering to help the church’s schools where we worked. He has brightened the rooms that once were filled with infirmity and sadness. Even though our resources were few, the Lord has been with us, giving us the strength needed for the work we do with the children and with Dorcas.
For everything, may the name of the Lord be praised!