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The Honey I have Tasted

My name is Yasumana, and I am from Niger. At age seven, I went to spend six years at a boarding school, far away from my village. I grew up Muslim, but hardly ever practiced Islam. As students, we didn’t pray; we weren’t encouraged to, and laziness helped. Then I heard a Muslim leader preach one day. I had no illusions: I wasn’t at all doing what Islam demanded. If I died, I’d go directly to hell. I was scared.

When I grew older, I met some Christians who became my friends. They talked about Jesus; but for me, who cares? It was just a lot of hot air. Whenever I did bad things - whether it was fighting, or whatever - I would congratulate myself for having done them. Inside, I was afraid. 

One day I said to the Christians, “Okay, why not? I’ll try your faith, and we’ll see.” 

Reading the Bible, I found Christianity was not what I expected. It was the solution; it was what I really needed. I read, “Come to me, all who are weary and heavy laden, and I will give you rest” (Mt. 11:28). I was burdened. I had done things that I was ashamed of. I felt useless and unworthy. I knew that, left on my own, I was spiritually incapable. During this time, I understood that Jesus has accomplished everything that God requires of a person. I came to regret the evil I had done, and to want to do the right thing, not just to go to heaven, but to bring pleasure to God.

So, I became a Christian.

To become a Christian was not to become weird or strange or to deny my culture or become an infidel. It was to receive a spirit of courage, and no longer fear death. I had no regrets about my decision, no; none at all. I went to Burkina Faso to serve in the Church. I am still there today. I ask myself; how can this be? Here I am, preaching and serving the Lord! God really has done marvelous things!

We have a proverb: “Whoever tastes honey, thinks of his neighbor.” When we experience something good, we want to share it. I have tasted the honey that is Jesus, and I think of you, my brothers. I wish for you the honey I have tasted.

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