Friday: Inside Story – All Things Work Together for Good

Like many young people in Africa, Siyoka had migrated from his home village to a larger town in search of a job. He lived with relatives and sent every penny he could back to his widowed mother and two younger brothers.

The Ethiopian Is Baptized

Image © Kim Justinen from

It was the music that first attracted him to meetings held by Pastor Mbena, but when he heard the story of Jesus, Siyoka could not stop thinking about how wonderful it would be to go to heaven with Him. What would it be like, he wondered, never to be hungry, sad, lonely, or afraid again.

The meetings over, Siyoka decided to return home and go to school so that perhaps, someday, he could become a pastor too. The local elder who took charge of following up those who had attended the meeting thought Siyoka had lost interest when he left town. He did whatever work he could find to pay for his school fees, as well as caring for the family garden. But that year the rains did not come. Sadly the villagers watched their crops wither and die. Sometimes there would be clouds and even a little rain, but not the steady, soaking rains needed to bring life to the barren earth.

The famine was terrible. Many died and many more, including Siyoka, became sick. In desperation his mother, seeing he was about to die, managed to bring him to a hospital in the nearest city. It was there that Pastor Mbena, visiting some of his church members, found him.

After relating these events, Siyoka’s thin face lit up as he said in a weak whisper, God is good, Pastor Mbena. He kept me from dying in the famine and now I will be alive to see my people baptized. You will come to my village, won’t you?

Yes, Siyoka, I must come to your village and hold some meetings so your people can learn about Jesus, answered the pastor warmly.

Oh, they already know Jesus, Pastor! Siyoka assured him earnestly.

There are 25 ready to be baptized. I told them everything I learned when I attended your meetings and taught them the songs, too. I met with them every Sabbath. Even when the famine was really bad we prayed, and God answered our prayers. He brought me here so I could find you. When can you come?

Pastor Mbena could hardly believe his ears. This boy who had had so little opportunity to learn had become a preacher for God! When Siyoka was well enough to go home the pastor accompanied him. He visited the people and found that they had indeed been well taught. What a wonderful day it was when Siyoka and his 25 converts were baptized.

This story was written by Charlotte Ishkanian.

Produced by the General Conference Office of Adventist Mission.

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Friday: Inside Story – All Things Work Together for Good — 12 Comments

  1. Am bless and very encourage with this amazing gives me more strength to stand still for the LORD during difficult times.

    May God bless him more so that he can fulfill his dreams.

  2. It is stories like this that humble us and inspire us to trust in God whatever the circumstances might be. We in the USA cannot appreciate fully what other nations endure as a way of life. The blessings that we take for granted are Gods way of displaying His love and care for all His children. Thanks be to God for the greatest gift of all. Our salvation through Jesus.

  3. This story is very touching. If only we could believe what we have been taught for years about our salvation, we could bring more souls to Jesus.

  4. This story confirms that His words shall not return barren. So keep planting and judge no one for only God knows the heart.

  5. I Thank God for His mighty power and His revealing love to (Pastor Mbena) messages that reached out to (Siyoka) in far land I cannot go. I prayed that the whole village will come to know the Lord of Lord and King of King.

    Please continue praying for Siyoka that the Lord will bless him in his ministry.

  6. This is a wonderful and inspiring story for all Christians. Let every Christian go out and share the good news to those who do not know it.
    May God bless our brother Siyoka and his family.

  7. Hope all people to be like Siyoka if we're to trust in God. May God bless him with his family,thanks be to God.


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