Joy Despite Hardship

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603428_10150952737981300_687846814_n“Mi zamu ce ma Allahnmu. Sai mu ce masa mun gode.” Roughly translated this means, “What shall we say to our God. We shall say we thank you.” Heruna, one of the many wonderful people I met this summer, taught me this song. He is a tall, powerfully built Hausa man with a kind face and a big smile.   Most importantly, he loves Jesus.  Every Sunday he would passionately pound on his djembe (a large African drum) while singing to the Lord with all his heart.  Even though I couldn’t understand the words at first, I would try my best to sing with him.  I couldn’t help it! His passion for music and the author of music was contagious. Also, the love that he was singing about didn’t need any translation.

Heruna is one of the very few Hausa people who are professing Christians.The culture he lives in is 99.9% Muslim.  This leaves a Christian very alone in West Africa. He is not accepted into the social circles in his culture.  He will never be honored or respected by his fellow men.  It is hard for him to find work and even harder to find a Christian wife. Despite all o10628278_10203226188914633_5376279526682526381_nf this, Heruna’s joy never ceases to abound.  He is outgoing with a great sense of humor and a love for music. We developed a strong friendship this summer. God has given Heruna incredible joy in hard circumstances.  His example is a testimony that speaks volumes to me, a guy who is chronically unthankful and worried.  God has given us joy that does not depend on our circumstances and that is something to sing praises about.

Gabe Clinton


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