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Ranjita

Current DBU student Ranjita Kumar grew up in an Indian orphanage. Her biological family practiced Hinduism, and she herself was a professing atheist. At the young age of seven, her biological mother placed her in a Christian orphanage. This decision could have taken Ranjita’s life in a very dark direction, but instead was dramatically changed thanks to an Operation Christmas Child shoebox.

“I received a shoebox when I was 7 years old,” Ranjita began. “It played a big role in me becoming a Christian, because I was an atheist at the time. At the orphanage, I received a Bible in my shoebox, which planted a seed in my life. It made me really curious about faith and God; while it took me more than 6 years to accept Christ and follow Him, it has been the best journey.”

In an incredible turn of events, the pastor and his wife at the orphanage chose to adopt Ranjita. At only 14 years old, she started working for her church as a translator. She grew up studying Hindi and spent time teaching the language to missionaries and taking them to her family’s ministry, Good News Center.

Ranjita’s parents instilled the value of education into her and her siblings’ lives. She went to high school in New Delhi, and after graduating, she enrolled in Delhi University and planned on attending law school. However, her plans soon changed when her dad introduced her to Dallas Baptist University.

“One day, my dad showed up with an application for DBU. He had already filled out everything and took me to get a visa,” continued Ranjita. “That was October 2014. No one in my family got a visa on their first attempt. I arrived to apply and after two questions, the lady told me congratulations, and that I had been approved for my visa. It was a big confirmation from God. I got my visa on the 23rd and left on the 28th of the same month.”

Ranjita arrived around the same time that DBU began packing Operation Christmas Child boxes, and she was encouraged to pack her own boxes, alongside fellow students. According to Ranjita, packing these boxes not only ministers to children across the world, it also ministers to those who are sending them.

“We hosted a Christmas-themed shoebox packing party at DBU, because my shoebox was my first Christmas present,” she said. “At the party, many international students packed with us, many of whom really don’t know what they’re doing. The party itself is a way of telling people that we love Jesus, that’s why we pack these boxes.”

In 2016, Ranjita had the opportunity to be trained by the Operation Christmas Child organization to tell her story to others. With a group of what the organization calls Full Circle Speakers, Ranjita travels to different churches to share her testimony in hopes of making a difference.

“We go to churches and share our stories,” said Ranjita, “and it really makes a big difference for them to see someone that actually got one. It impacts someone’s life.”

From receiving a shoebox at an orphanage in India to packing them herself at DBU, her life has come full circle. According to Ranjita, her story is a testament to God’s faithfulness and provision.

“God has made everything possible,” she reflected. “I’m still here and I’m graduating in a month, which seems crazy. God provides for every semester. I’m now looking to get my master’s degree. I’m thankful for the time I’ve been here, and if or when I go back to India, I will receive it as a blessing because God sends His people everywhere, and everywhere people need Jesus. So, whether it’s America, India, or whichever country, I don’t really mind. I’ve seen how faithful God really is, and how He has sustained me through life thus far. If God can do that, He can do anything.”

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