The following is the direct testimony of one of our country leaders, who left a traditional Muslim family and tribe when she discovered the love and hope of Jesus. She currently leads a CIC team of 712 indigenous local church ministry volunteers, ministering to over 2,500 children in weekly CIC Clubs. The children love her and call her “Aunty” – and there is tremendous fruit of transformed lives in this very challenging country in Sub-Saharan Africa.
For security purposes, her name and the country is withheld.
I Came From A Fulani Muslim Family
I was born and grew up in a very fervent, polygamous Muslim family with the consciousness that the Muslim way is what we have to be and nothing else. This was done with the strong traditional and cultural beliefs and practices as a Fulani. We were required to observe Islamic Quranic recitation from childhood, observe the five pillars of Islam daily prayers, and many others.
How I Encountered Jesus as Lord and Savior and God’s Son
I came from such large Muslim family as the last born to my father and mother. I can fortunately admit that during my youthful and school days, I was surrounded with some Christian friends whose faith was very strong in the Lord. Thus they were always telling me about the Lord Jesus and His goodness in their lives and families. For me to give my life to Christ was almost impossible, due to my strong beliefs in Islam by birth.
But in 1991 April 12, the day of my birthday, my friends decided to organize a party for me, but their hearts’ prayer was that I would receive the freedom and love of Christ. They asked me to attend Bible school with them on my birthday. I felt convicted I needed to follow them though it was unknown to my family members, my sisters and brothers. My first week in the bible school was a week of encounters with the Lord Jesus and specifically He appeared to me in a dream and it was so powerful it made me convinced that Jesus is the son of God and not just a prophet as Muslims believe. I saw Him with my spiritual eyes with glory shining light around that night. Since this time, I have known many other Muslims who have come to faith in Jesus through dreams like this. For me, I woke up with a new heart and fresh looks, peace and laughter bobbling within my inner spirit. It was so strong that I could not keep myself from speaking out to my parents and elders and confess that I had received Jesus as my Savior. I had seen Jesus with my own eyes. And with boldness I could not pray the Muslim way but now only in Jesus’ name.
The Early Call Amidst Persecution
The persecution was fast and it started with rejection from all sides, but I still held on to that encounter I had in the dream and this scripture in Mark 10: 29-30:
Jesus said, “Truly, I say to you, there is no one who has left house or brothers or sisters or mother or father or children or lands, for my sake and for the gospel, who will not receive a hundredfold now in this time, houses and brothers and sisters and mothers and children and lands, with persecutions, and in the age to come eternal life.”
I thought – If Jesus will take care of me, I vow I will not return to the darkness of Islam.
Yes it was very tough for me then, but God helped me to go through all persecutions, with help, prayer, and support of believers who adopted me like they were my own parents and my friends encouraged me during that whole time. I received my first Bible at the Bible school as a gift by Pastor B. and he discipled me in the core foundations of our faith and baptism. Seven months after receiving Christ, I was baptized. The power of the Holy Spirit also gave me strength, refreshment, and encouragement in my new faith. I decided to volunteer at the local Bible school, and took part in some outreaches to children. There, I heard the voice of God speaking to me: “I have called you to share my love and peace to the children and I am going to use you for this purpose, and don’t say you are small and that you don’t know anything.” Then I was just 20 years old. In 1992, my spiritual growth was very rapid because of my association with the Bible school and the men and women of God that He surrounded me with. There I served for 7 years.
In The Midst of Stonings, The Call Continued
In 2001, I decided to visit my elder sister residing in another West African country during summer break. There I was invited to a church and was asked by the pastor to help and teach the Sunday school children because the teacher was absent. In the midst of my teaching we had some Muslim youths around who began to throw stones at me and the children. I was hurt on my forehead, but in the midst of this I heard the voice again: “I have called you to share my love and peace to the children, now you will have to go back and then return again for a mission for the children in this country.”
In 2003, I came again for a second visit. During my attendance at a crusade event, a ministry leader came to me and said, “I have been looking for you for the past three days to share a vision of children with you. Tonight I am coming with you to your house for a meeting.” He knew something of me beforehand and the Lord made a way for us to meet. Shortly after, he had a vision-casting of the importance of children and God’s call to minister to them – the beginning of Children in Christ in this country. The vision-casting was very successful and we recruited about 29 volunteers for CIC and launched the first CIC Club in that country. And there we were also stoned just because of the mention of the name of Jesus during our teachings.