Torstai 15.11.2018
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Minä tiedän, että lunastajani elää. Hän sanoo viimeisen sanan maan päällä. Job 19:25

A man with only his native language showed me the way to God’s kingdom

in English 26.9.2018 15:10 | Siionin Lähetyslehti
My name is Sarah. I live in Bondo, Kenya, with my husband and children.
I first came across believers when I was an exchange nursing student in Finland in 2000. Our dorms were quite close to Oulun rauhanyhdistys, where believers kept services.

Once, while doing my practical training, I met a believing man called Samuli Riekki.

He approached me, smiling widely, when I was doing a painting job in the corner of the room. He muttered some words, hoping I would understand, but because his English was not good, he did not know how to continue.

Fortunately, I had learned some basic words of Finnish to get by in this foreign country. So I just added to his anguish of not being able to communicate by saying: Mitta kuulu? (How are you?). Samuli was so embarrassed that he just said his fami­ly name: Riekki. I said: Mina on Sarah...  (I am Sarah).

Samuli went away but soon came back with a lady who spoke English. With her help we were able to communicate better, and Samuli invited me to visit his home.

I believe that he was guided by God’s spirit. I told the other students, Leonard, Christine, Electa, Elizabeth, and some others, about the invitation, and they wanted to come along.

We had a warm welcome: the house was full of a kind of joy and happiness that is quite rare.

We also met other friends of the family. We – especially I – thought that they might be making fun of our ugly skin. But I later realized that their behavior was due to the sincere love and joy given by the Lord Jesus.

I understood that when Samuli invited us to attend services at Oulun rauhanyhdistys. I listened carefully to the message of the sermon. When the speaker was about to finish, I felt I was condemned because of my sins. When he said that we could believe our sins forgiven, I put up my hand and felt a miraculous peace and calmness in my heart.

There had been so many battles in my life, and my heart was full of bitterness. When I prayed for strength also to forgive others, I felt my heart calm down. The message of forgiveness has kept me on the road until this day. It has taught me that we can enjoy the peace and freedom given by the Holy Spirit if we really want also to forgive each other.

It is like a miracle that all of the friends we met in Samuli’s home have remained friends until this day.

God’s kingdom is like a mustard seed and a hidden treasure. My experience of God’s kingdom is similar to that recounted in the parables by Matthew (Matt. 13:31–32, 44). Before I became a member of this kingdom, I was nobody. I was struggling to rise from my miserable background of poverty. Since the time I humbly accepted the gospel, that mustard seed has been growing in me in such way that my family have also seen it and been able to enter God’s kingdom. That seed has grown so big that it has helped others, including my sister and other relatives, to find this haven of support and safety, because God has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavens (Eph. 1:3).

For me, God’s kingdom is a precious hidden treasure, and I wish that all those who have not yet found it could find it. It is wonderful to be a child of God. He has granted me gifts and protected me, He has given me a new life and led me into a safe haven. I put all my trust in Him. By God’s grace I am what I am today.

Dear friend, whoever you are and whatever struggles you may be having in your life, I want to call you into this kingdom. God has opened His arms and is ready to embrace you. Come, come and believe your sins forgiven in the precious blood of Jesus Christ.

Text: Sarah Ndenga Sidwaka
Translation: S-L.L.

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