Ulrike & Toussaint Baur-Kouato July 01 2018, 4:20 pm

I was in the kitchen making mango jam when our short-term missionary, Bruna, came over to ask for some advice. It was a Thursday, and the next day a Pathfinder leadership training event would start, an event for which she had long planned and prepared. She had carefully chosen and invited 15 individuals from different churches, young people who were actively involved in Pathfinder meetings and already leading clubs. Wednesday night at prayer meeting, Karim had asked her if he could attend the training as well. She hadn’t taken his request seriously. However, the next day he repeatedly called her on the phone until he got a hold of her. She didn’t quite know what to do.

Karim is a 16-year-old boy from our church. He was baptized last year but has been very irregular lately in his attendance at church and Pathfinder meetings. He was obviously lacking commitment and was also struggling with family issues. His parents are both baptized, but they are not very good role models for a Christian lifestyle.

Bruna had talked to Karim several times in the past about his behavior. Now she didn’t know how to answer his insistent request to attend the Pathfinder leadership training. She told him, “Give me one good reason why I should let you attend.”

His answer was simple but profound: “Bruna, I need to change my life.”

Knowing a little bit more about Karim’s background, I told Bruna she should let him come for the training and give him a chance. So Karim did attend. He participated actively and showed some leadership qualities Bruna hadn’t seen in him before.

Conversion doesn’t come easily in this part of the world with its strong animist background. We don’t have mass baptisms, and it takes a long time for people to take this step. But seeds are constantly planted, and we see the Holy Spirit at work. He is changing lives one life at a time. Pray with us that Karim’s life will be forever changed. Thank you for your long-term commitment to the Otammari Project.