March 1, 2022
To Help you Pray this month for your Local Mosque Community.
I was born in Kenya, but I spent several early years in Ethiopia. My grandfather was a very devoted Muslim who wanted his oldest grandson to become an imam (Islamic priest). Just prior to my birth, some community members prophesied that a boy would be born on a Friday, and that this boy would become an imam. When I was born on a Friday soon after that, they believed that I was the fulfillment of this prophecy.
So, at eight months of age, I was taken into my grandfather’s home. From ages four to twelve, I studied at the madressa (Quaranic school) in his home, training to be an Islamic priest. By the age of eight, I was leading others in prayer throughout our neighbourhood. However, at around that same age, I developed a terrible eye problem. We lived in a rural area, and I became very sick. Refusing to take me to a hospital, my grandfather insisted on trying many traditional remedies to heal my eyes. One of these remedies involved burning the area on the skin beside my eyes. The remedy did not work, and I still bear the burn scars as a reminder.
Finally, my mother came to my grandfather’s house while he was out at the mosque and secretly took me away to the city where there was a hospital. The hospital happened to be a Lutheran (missions) clinic. Within a short time, my eye sickness was miraculously healed. A short while later, my grandfather got very sick and died. Because I was the eldest son and was training to be an imam, I inherited his estate. I moved in with my parents and started to attend the school run by the mission.
At the age of ten, I started grade one. My first subject on the first day of school was Bible (Christian Religious Education). I absolutely fell in love with the teaching and the way the subject was taught. I became the top student in my class and was given a Bible for the first time in my life. Somehow, I was able to maintain straight A’s in this class and within three years, I had caught up to grade six (although I was always several years older than my classmates). During that time, my behavior was very bad. I was rebellious and used to stir up a lot of trouble with many of the students and staff. But regardless of my misconduct, I succeeded in my studies and continued to attend both the local mosque and the church.
One day, I was getting ready to leave the church to get to the mosque on time. The preacher was teaching about Jesus’ crucifixion. The message hit me so hard that I started to cry uncontrollably. I stayed to hear the whole message and was approached by the preacher afterwards. As we talked that day, I gave my life to Christ. Like Paul, I changed in one day and became a devoted Christ follower. I never went back to the mosque again. Soon thereafter, I was baptized (Lutheran) and became a choir leader in the church – something that brought me great joy and fulfillment.
By the age of seventeen, people started to notice my character changing but my parents still did not know that I was a Christian. I was convicted one day to share this news with them when I heard a teaching on Matthew 10:33 (‘But whoever disowns me before others, I will disown before my Father in heaven.’). I knew that I had to testify for Christ and be willing to risk whatever happened as a result of sharing my faith with my family. When I told my father the news, it did not go well. My father immediately took action to kill me as a “kafir” (unbeliever). In an instant, I was forced to run from my home. I initially found a place to live with an old woman from church, and later I lived with my uncle who had also left Islam.
I continued to do well in a school led by a Lutheran priest under whose direction I became a dedicated, passionate youth leader. Since I was ex-communicated from my family and community, I moved to Kenya, where I started grade nine at the age of fifteen. Throughout my high school years, I managed to start a church in and also became a successful in business. At age twenty-one, I completed high school and at age twenty-three I got married to a woman who had accepted Christ as her Lord and Saviour. Her parents were Muslim, but they did not mind her marrying a Christian man. They insisted that my father come to Kenya to give his “blessing” to us, which he agreed to – but he never accepted us as Christ followers. He stayed thirty minutes, then returned home. Amazingly, all of my brothers, my mother and my in-laws became Christians throughout those years.
When my father became ill, we took him into our home and cared for him, which was the requirement for me as his eldest son. On several occasions, I shared the gospel with him but he ultimately did not renounce Islam. Sadly, my father died in my home; and when the mosque clerics came to take his body away, as a non-Muslim I was not allowed to attend his burial.
I became a well-known and influential Christian leader in our community, but this meant that I was often on the run. On more than one occasion, people were hired to kill me. Eventually, in order to escape persecution, I left Kenya and went to the United States (US) where I obtained my Masters of Theology between 2009-2013. My passion for the LORD and for sharing the gospel was very strong. I started several churches in the US as well as opened a Theological Bible College. In 2018, I received my doctorate in Theology. At that point, I had a choice – go back to Kenya, or seek asylum in Canada. The situation in Kenya was too dangerous, and so I decided to apply for refugee status in Canada. In July 2019, by the grace of God, I was granted entry into Canada.
It has been a long journey; and the journey continues! I have been waiting a total of thirteen years to reunite with my family (wife and children), who remained in Kenya. Thankfully, in May 2020, my sponsorship visa application was approved and now I am waiting for them to come join me in Winnipeg. As I wait, I am working a secular job and witnessing to people there as God leads. I also do ministry at a local Ethiopian church and teach online at the Theological Bible College. God is so good; and so faithful!
My dream now is to be united with my family, and eventually engage in full-time ministry / outreach, plant churches, and teach others about the good news of Jesus Christ.
- Pray that my visa sponsorship process will go smoothly and that my family and I will be reunited soon.
- Pray that God will open doors and opportunities for me to engage in full-time ministry and outreach in Canada and abroad.
- According to UReach Toronto, there are 3,960 Kenyans in Toronto. Please pray for God to reveal Himself to those who don't know Him yet as their Father.
- Pray for more miracles of faith and life transformation will take place in the Muslim world. May all know Jesus as Al Moshaah – the God who Saves.
My Power Verse
"For none of us lives to himself, and no one dies to himself. For if we live, we live to the Lord; and if we die, we die to the Lord. Therefore, whether we live or die, we are the Lord’s". (Romans 14:7-8)