Congo | May 25

Finding My God

Esther

[Ask a woman to present this first-person report.]1406019139

I was born into a nominal Christian home. But when I married a Muslim, I accepted Islam. Even after my husband died, I continued in his faith, for it connected me to my beloved husband. 

I began having the same dream night after night. I dreamed that someone—I couldn’t see his face—gave me a Bible and quoted Bible verses. I recognized some of the verses from my childhood. Then I dreamed that I must go to Kinshasa [kihn-SHAH-sah], the capital city, where my sister lived. Her husband was pastor of a Protestant church there. These dreams troubled me. Finally I told a Muslim friend about the dreams.  She listened carefully and then said, “I feel that God is calling you; you must not resist the voice of God.”

I nodded, and prepared for my journey to Kinshasa. Before I went I gave my prayer rug, my copies of the Koran, and even my Muslim dresses and headscarves to my Muslim friends. They asked me why I was giving all these things away. Was I leaving my faith behind? 

I told them about my dreams, that Someone is calling me, and I must follow. One of the women told an imam [EE-mahm, teacher], who was also my landlord. He  came to talk me out of leaving. But I told him that God was calling me, and I must follow.

The imam responded by sending me out of my house. “I won’t tolerate two gods in my house,” he said. “And Allah is God here.”

I didn’t know what to do next. I have a teenage son, and we had nowhere to go. I gathered up a few clothes and left my furniture and other belongings behind. Then my son and I made our way to my uncle’s home in Kinshasa. 

I felt so sorry for my son, who was leaving everything behind for me. I had pulled him out of school and away from his friends and the life he had known. But he didn’t complain. But I learned that he had long wanted to become a Christian and was happy to be leaving our former life behind. 

We arrived at my uncle’s home very late at night. He said that he had been praying for me. I was surprised because I had been such a dedicated Muslim. He invited me into his home and gave me a place to stay. And he began teaching me what he knew about Christ. 

Some weeks later I returned to see the imam. I apologized to him that my decision to become a Christian had broken our friendship. I explained that I had to follow God. I asked him not to harm either me or my son, as is the tradition in my area. I could see that he was angry with me. “You have brought many people into Islam,” he said. “It’s a shame that you are leaving this faith.”

One day I learned that my sister was sick. Her husband asked me to come and stay with her. I agreed. My sister had become an Adventist, and she invited me to go to church with her. I agreed. And when the church held evangelistic meetings, I attended.  The messages I heard in the Adventist meetings seemed to be true, but I felt a loyalty to my uncle’s church, for he had introduced me to Christ.

One night during the evangelistic meetings I had another dream. I saw Adventists climbing a huge mountain to a church. When I woke up, I realized that God was telling me to follow this greater truth. So I prepared to be baptized into the Adventist faith. At my baptism I took a Bible name—Esther. My son chose the name Joseph, for he, too, has accepted the Adventist faith. I know we have found God’s true church, and we will never leave it. Together we will serve God until Jesus comes. 

Recently I learned that a group of Muslim women who had once worshipped with me want me to go to their place and teach them how they too can become Christians. I am praying for God’s leading in this invitation. I know that He will lead. 

I’m so grateful for the evangelistic fervor of faithful Adventists that brought me to the Adventist Church. My life is forever changed. And your mission giving helped make it possible for me to know the truth that has freed me from fear and false worship. Thank you.

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