24 December 2007

Tabaski and Christmas in Bouake

What has Tabaski and Christmas in common you ask? Nothing really in my opinion. Also the market here and the supermarket in Europe and the US don’t have much in common. It’s only that both holidays are close together this year. Yesterday, I drove through our sheep market. I have never seen so many sheep in one place in my life. Actually it’s a big empty place here in the City of Bouake, where cars drive through easily. Only the last few weeks it’s filled with thousands of sheep.

Wednesday, 19th December, uncountable lots of sheep are going to be sacrificed for the forgiveness of sins, here in Bouake and everywhere in the Muslim world. Tabaski or El-Eid is one of the biggest holidays in Islam. It’s to remember Abraham offering his son Ishmael on the alter and God provided a ram to be used for the sacrifice instead. While few in our surroundings will celebrate Christmas, Jesu’s Birthday, a few days later.

Rom. 6, 10: „The death he died, he died to sin once for all.“ Hebr. 7, 27: „He sacrificed for their sins once for all when he offered himself.” John 1, 29 + 32: When John saw Jesus coming toward him he said: „Look, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world! I saw the Spirit come down from heaven as a dove and remain on him. I would not have known him.“

How are we spending our Christmas season? Rod drove up to Korhogo for two weeks to teach at the Bible school. This week he has a module on Islam. He is coming back to Bouake, Dec. 22nd. Angelika stayed in Bouake to shop in the sheep market. No! She visited Mariam, a friend from church, whose husband converted to Islam, last year. This summer, a rival (a 2nd wife of her husband) moved in with a baby and a two year old girl. The small apartment got pretty tight for Mariam and her 3 children. Not only that. There are lots of problems in the Coulibaly family. Mariam does need a lot of prayer and encouragement out of God’s Word. Today, I visited another young lady from church who just delivered her 3rd child two weeks ago. A few days ago her husband died from an incurable disease. She also needs a lot of prayer and encouragement. Furthermore, I am encouraging Celine, a young girl of 19 years, who will get baptized with about 20 other young people. Celine is the only believer in her Muslim family. On Wednesday, she will help her mom preparing the Tabaski lamb. But Christmas and her baptism a few days later will not be celebrated in her family, not to mention to be noticed. That’s why a few friends of her are going to surprise her and I am going to help them with it.

“Hear the sound of the nations calling? Hear the sound of the fatherless crying? Who will go for us? Who will shout to the corners of the earth that Christ is King?”

(Israel Houghton – „We speak to Nations“©2001 Integrity’s Praise Music)

Wishing you a Merry Christmas
Joyeux Noel
Fröhliche Weihnachten

Rod and Angelika

3 comments:

childlife said...

LOL at the comment about Angelika shopping in the sheep market : D

Merry Christmas to both of you from Ken and I. You have been much on our hearts and in our prayers. Angelika, we will be praying for your ministry in the lives of these women, and that their faith will spread to those around them.

Prayers that 2008 will bring you much joy and many blessings!

~Ken and Shelly

Anonymous said...

Hey there Rod and Angelika,
Just been parousing your blog and reading your views and insights in the events of your lives. I appreciate you sharing.
Carol Rags.

Ruth said...

Hi Rod and Angelika,

Hey, happy New Year and Happy Valentines Day. My brother-in-law and sister are going on a short-term mission to the Ivory Coast. I'd love to get you in touch with each other but your email was returned to me. Anyway, their names are Aron and Rose Boesl and they are going to Ferke.

Let me know if your email changed.

Hugs and prayers,

Ruth Wood