Called: Jesse Ishaku Amah-Kabong – age 15 is not too young
By Mercy Kambura
I was nine years old when I first went on a cross-cultural mission trip abroad. My family and I packed our bags and headed out of Nigeria for Mali. We were going as missionaries in a predominantly Muslim region, and I didn’t think we’d come back alive.
As my dad prayed for us before the journey, I felt encouraged. I was excited to share the gospel with the people in Mali. However, my first one-on-one evangelism didn’t result in a conversion. I was ill-at-ease as I tried to break the ice that felt like striking a frozen lake. Gathering my courage like little David before Goliath, I told him, “Jesus became my friend, and He’d like to be your friend too.” I handed him a gospel tract with trembling hands and invited him to read.
His response was casual and comforting. He said he’d like Jesus to be his friend, just not immediately; he’d think about it. As an introvert, it had taken a lot of strength to reach out, and I was a little discouraged about his response. I have been praying for him, and I know he will make Jesus his friend one day soon.
As I’ve watched my parents reach out to the unreached, I have seen firsthand that it’s not easy, and it’s not a job exclusively for grown-ups.
In Mali, we had a sports ministry and showed the kids films in the evenings. My role was to invite my friends to come and help my dad set up for the shows. We’d then speak to them about Christ. Many people gave their lives to Christ, especially during the film, The Passion of the Christ.
Every Wednesday, we went out with my parents for evangelism, handing out gospel tracts to people in the streets. I was delighted to be involved because it added to my Bible knowledge and experience in missions. I’ve also learned to trust God as I watch my parents walk in blind faith despite trials.
Once, the office couldn’t send money for our upkeep in good time, and we were on the verge of starvation. We went before God, and a neighbour brought us food without us asking.
We were in Mali for four-and-a-half years, and I have no regrets about my time there. I’d want to go back to Mali, and I’d like to be a missionary. I don’t know where God would want me to go; He hasn’t shown me yet. But I have been praying for many countries that don’t know God to get to know Him.
It has been a pleasure reaching the unreached with my parents, especially my dad, because he led me to Christ on 29th April 2016. He also baptized me and has been my discipler.
No one is ever too young to be used by God. God will show you what He has for you as you participate in missions. You can start serving God now in your country.
Word from Daddy
Having my son give his life to Christ through me and baptizing him is the best experience a father can go through. That made me happy. I always took him with me on my mission trips, even when he was too young to understand what was happening.
Parents, make the effort to lead your children to Christ. Teach them to speak about Jesus to others; even if all they’ll say is “Jesus loves you”, it’s enough.