India (MNN) — Around 2 million kids end up on the streets in northern India each year. Many fall victim to child labor or sex trafficking.
"As much as God has His hands over these children, the enemy also wants to snatch them from our hands," says Sister Mary, a missionary supported by Gospel for Asia.
She heads up a boys' home in northern India which rescues boys from the streets and tries to reunite them with their families, if possible. The home currently cares for over 40 young men, ranging in age from 4-14 years old.
"When I see the staff pouring out their hearts and just giving their time and their energy, their love–everything for these children," Mary says, "when I see one of the children wrap his arms around another child who's not feeling well, or bringing food to a child who's feeling sad… then I know the [Lord's hand] is over them, [and] He's working in their lives."
Each boy has his own story of life before the center, but none of them are happy.
"Many are working; they come as child laborers. Many are abused, so they run away from home," explains Mary. "A lot of our boys are living on the streets, begging in the streets, or their families are very poor.
"They come from many different backgrounds, but most of them come from very dark places."
One 10-year-old boy worked at a motor factory, trying to earn enough to support his five younger brothers and a sister. Another young boy with a developmental disorder was kicked out of his home when his mother died.
In each case, a woman missionary supported by GFA comes to the child in the streets and asks him if he wants to be helped. She and other women missionaries then work with the Indian government to restore each boy with his family.
"They're coming from poor backgrounds," says Mary. "They're malnourished, some of them coming [are] abused, so they need healing: spiritual, physical healing."
Ask God to heal any emotional or physical wounds these children may have. Along with attending to their medical needs, feeding them, and keeping them clothed, the boys' center is also helping young men get an education. Some have never even been to school.
"We want to get them in the school, we want to get them educated. So you could pray that God would give them [the] ability to learn," Mary requests.
"Pray that God would give them grace and wisdom," she adds. "Pray that they would come to know Him, have a personal relationship with Him."