Die lewens van Mali se inwoners  is omvergewerp na die onlangse staatsgreep, waarvan u dalk reeds gehoor het.  Die veiligheidsituasie het nog nie verbeter nie. Daar heers groot bekommernis dat Islamitiese militante groepe die land kan oorneem indien die Franse troepe onttrek. Omgekrapte betogers eis dat die Russiese militêre magte tussenbeide moet tree. Die nuwe regering het amptelik versoek dat die Verenigde Nasies dit moet oorweeg om te onttrek, verkieslik op ‘n langtermyn basis. Die jihadiste het nou na die Ivoorkus versprei, terwyl die situasie dreig om buite beheer te raak in naburige Burkina Faso. Sommige meen dat, tensy die Russe besluit om toe te tree tot die geveg teen die Islamiete in Mali, die situasie ongetwyfeld gedoem is tot Chaos.

Kerke in Manantali en Sollo het onlangs ‘n uitreik in Sollo gereël. Christene van die DRK, Liberië, Koulikoro en Sadiola in Mali het die geleentheid ook bygewoon. Daar is nie vooraf toestemming gevra om die uitreik te doen nie, maar ons gebede vir God se beskerming teen die verspreiding van Kovid-19 is definitief verhoor, aangesien daar binne ‘n maand na die uitreiking nog nie ‘n enkele Kovid-geval aangemeld is nie!

Gedurende die uitreik, wat ons binnekort weer gaan opvolg, het verskeie  mense tot bekering gekom,  waarvan twee gevalle uitstaan. Een van die nuwe gelowiges is ‘n jongman met die naam Ben*, is die seun van die Imam (geestelike leier) van Sollo, genaamd Mohammed*. Die tweede bekeerde, John*, is die neef van dieselfde Imam. Hier volg hul getuienisse:

Ben: “Ek luister gereeld na die radiostasie, KanuYah FM Sollo,  en het daardeur meer kennis verkry oor wat presies dit beteken om ‘n Christen te wees. Ek weet nou verseker watter Naam om aan te roep as ek gered wil word. Ek weet Jesus is die weg – die enigste weg. Ek het gevolglik nie vir ‘n oomblik getwyfel om my pa, die Imam van ons dorpie,  te vertel dat ek ‘n Christen gaan word nie. Ek was voorbereid vir enigiets indien hy gewelddadig sou reageer, maar hy het nie! In plaas daarvan, het hy eenvoudig gesê dat hy my besluit nie sal teenstaan; geen twee mense kan immers die pad in die ewigheid saam loop nie. Elkeen kies sy eie pad na die dood. Ek is dankbaar vir die radiostasie wat my enigste bron van inspirasie en inligting is in geloofsake. Ek is baie dankbaar teenoor God; Sy Gees moes my pa sekerlik gelei het om nie met geweld  te reageer op die nuus van my bekering na Christenskap nie”.

John: “Deur die radiostasie het ek al die kennis gekry wat ek nodig gehad het om die mees belangrike besluit van my lewe te neem; om my geloof en lewe aan Jesus Christus oor te gee. Ek het nou groot sekerheid in my gemoed, en weet, sonder die geringste twyfel, dat ek die regte keuse gemaak het. Vir dekades het ek vrae gevra omtrent die lewe hier, en daarna, en omtrent God en die heelal. My vrae het onbeantwoord gebly totdat ek na die uitsendings van KanuYah FM Sollo radio begin luister het. Nou het ek die antwoorde  en ek is nie meer bekommerd nie. Alhoewel my oom die Imam van ons dorpie is, gaan geen mens ons beoordelaar wees op die oordeelsdag nie. Ons kan nie weier om Jesus te volg nie. Dit is nie wys om mense te vrees en God te verloën nie.”

Nog ‘n getuienis is die van ‘n jongman van Senegal wie onlangs ‘n besoek aan Manantali gebring het saam met sy Mali-vriend. Sy naam is Peter*, en hy het die volgende vertel. “My gemeenskap in Senegal is  nie ver van die grens geleë nie.  Ons luister graag na KanuYah FM Sollo, omdat ons in ‘n goeie opvanggebied is. Die radiostasie se programme is baie goed, veral die Christelike programme. Ons geniet ook die rykdom van musikale programme  wat musiek insluit van ander lande en tydperke, en ook  bedoel is vir beide Christene en nie-Christene. Evangeliste in ons gebied vertel dat KanuYah FM Sollo  ‘n uitstekende fasiliteerder  is vir hul werk, want dit lei tot vrugbare gesprekke en hulle kan ook makliker fisies kontak maak met mense”.

Hierdie bemoedigende getuienisse herinner ons daaraan dat, ten spyte van die onrus wat ons rondom ons ervaar, God nog steeds in beheer is. SY Lig skyn in die wêreld deur sy getroue dissipels wat bereid is om die Goeie Nuus opofferend met ‘n sterwende wêreld te deel. Die Moslem-gemeenskap is een van die grootste onbereikte groepe ter wêreld, met sekere radikale sektes wat ideologieë verkondig wat geweld aanblaas. Dit is deel van FEBA se mandaat om die evangelie aan hulle, sowel as die vele ander onbereikte groepe te bring deur middel van radio, media en ander nuwe tegnologieë.

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Mali: Plagued by Crisis, yet Triumphant in Faith!

After the recent coup d’état, the lives of Mali’s people are being tossed to and fro. The security situation is only worsening daily, and there is a great concern that Islamic militant groups could take over the country if the French troops withdraw.

Angry demonstrators demand the intervention of Russian military forces and the new government has officially requested the withdrawal of the presence of the United Nations. Jihadists have spread to Ivory Coast and as far as Burkina Faso. At this stage, some believe that the alliance with the Russian military, is the only hope the country has to win the fight against the Islamists in Mali.

Churches in the village of Manantali and Sollo, where one of our stations are based, recently organised an outreach event. Christians from DRC, Liberia, Koulikoro, and Sadiola in Mali attended the event as well. No prior permission was granted to host the event, but our team’s prayer(s) for God’s protection against the virus were certainly heard, as not a single positive case was reported for an entire month after the event.

During the outreach, several people accepted Christ as their Lord and Saviour. Out of all the testimonies we received, these two blessed us the most. One of the new believers who was led to Jesus during this outreach, is a young man named Ben*. The second convert, John*, is the cousin of the same Imam. Here are their testimonies;

Ben: “I regularly listen to the radio station, KanuYah FM Sollo, and have gained more knowledge about what it means to be a Christian. I now know for sure which path to follow if I want to be saved. I know Jesus is the way – the only way. As a result, I did not hesitate for a moment to tell my father, the imam of our village, that I wanted to become a Christian. I was prepared for anything in case my father would react violently, but he did not. Instead, he simply said that he would not oppose my decision, because no two people would go on the journey into eternity together. I am thankful for the radio station, because it’s my only inspiration and educator in matters of faith. I thank God, because His Spirit must have led my father not to react with violence when I told him I was going to exchange the Islamic faith for Christianity”.

John: “The radio station explained everything I needed to know in order to make the most important decision of my life, namely what leads a person to heaven or hell. I now have great certainty in my mind, because I can make the right choice without the slightest doubt. For decades, I have been asking questions about life on earth, and beyond, and about God and the universe. My questions remained unanswered until I started listening to KanuYah FM. Now I have all the answers and I am no longer worried. It is true that my uncle is the Imam of our village. But, no one is going to be anyone else’s judge on the Day of Judgement if you refuse to follow Jesus. It is therefore not wise to fear man and to defy God and as a result to walk straight into hellfire.”

Another testimony is that of a young man from Senegal who recently paid a visit to Manantali with his Malian friend. His name is Peter*; “My community in Senegal is not far from the border. We listen to KanuYah FM Sollo,” He explained. “The radio station’s richness of musical programs that include music from many countries and time periods, are also intended for both Christians and non-Christians. Evangelists in our area say that KanuYah FM Sollo is a facilitator for their work, because it leads to many conversations and physical contact with people.”

These encouraging testimonies remind us that, despite the turmoil we are witnessing around us, God is ultimately still in control. He shines his Light in the world through His faithful servants who are willing to make the sacrifices needed to share Christ to a hurting world. The Muslim community forms part of the many unreached groups in the world. Certain sects of the religion are radical, teaching ideologies that encourage violence. It is our mandate to bring the gospel to them, as well as many other unreached groups through radio, media and other new technologies.

* Pseudonyms used to protect the identity of persons mentioned.