Dominican Republic Testimony 2022 11Ironelis, from Villamela, Dominican Republic, has lived a tough life. Raised by her grandmother, she had to care for her younger brothers. She was already married by 14. “To me, marriage was a way to escape my miserable life,” she said. Fed up with her heavy responsibilities, Ironelis hoped her husband would release her from her burden.

Initially, it seemed to work perfectly until Ironelis had her first child at 17. “My husband began to drink heavily,” she recalled. Nevertheless, she had more children with him, and she kept hoping her husband’s attitude would change back to normal. However, nothing seemed to please him. “He only went out to drink, returning home drunk every day,” she said. “It was impossible to live with him.”

Ironelis endured her husband’s misbehavior for the sake of their children until she couldn’t take it anymore. She decided to leave him.

Left on her own, Ironelis tried everything to survive. Her traditional faith background made her think God would support her in any decision she made. “I figured I was His daughter after all,” she said. “However, I understand now that I cannot abuse the Bible to justify my bad actions.”

Eventually, Ironelis married another man, Elpidio. “We’ve been together 14 years now,” she says. “It’s not been a perfect life, but better than it used to be.”

All these years, Ironelis carried suffering, loneliness, and hopelessness in her heart. When she reached 45, she had five children and a grandson, but still no real happiness. Then, one day, as she was sitting in front of her house, three visitors offered her a book.

“Do you want to receive this as a gift?” they asked her, and she said, “Yes!”

“Can we come back to study the booklet with you?” they asked, and again, Ironelis said, “Yes!”

It turned out to be the best decision of her life.

“Through that booklet, the Gospel of John, I came to know Christ,” she rejoiced. “My life was empty. No matter how hard I tried to fill it, all I got was more difficulties and setbacks.” Studying God’s Word through the Bible League booklet transformed Ironelis’ mindset thoroughly. “I realized that my husband, children, nor any luxury could give me peace,” she reflected. “Now, I know I have someone I can trust, someone who can deliver me from my burden. That someone is Jesus Christ.”

Ironelis is forever grateful for your gift of God’s Word. “I thank you for giving me a new life,” she said. “Please, pray for Elpidio and my family to bow at the Lord’s feet and receive the love of Jesus.”