Two Kinds of Miracles
Stories from the West-Central Africa Division
By Josephine and Gilbert Wari
Stories from the West-Central Africa Division
Matthias Bohuia, a driver at the West-Central Africa Division (WAD) office in Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire, was seriously ill with a prostate crisis. But thought of an operation scared him. At the clinic, La Providence, his physician, Jean-Baptiste Moulo tried to calm him down, assuring him that surgery might not be necessary if he improved with treatment. That was on Monday, March 11, 2013.
The Operation—The treatments through that week reassured Matthias. But on Friday, March 15, 2013, something unexpected happened. About 3:30 p.m. Dr. Moulo had Matthias taken into the operating theater for surgery. Matthias was quite unprepared for this. He had not yet informed his family. But Dr. Moulo insisted and convinced Matthias that it had to be done. According to the physician, those three hours and 15 minutes were a time of grave crisis. Three times Matthias almost passed away. Dr. Moulo prayed for divine assistance, and God answered him and his team. Finally, the operation was successful.
The next evening, when Dr. Moulo visited Matthias in his room, Matthias asked him why the doctor had insisted that he be operated upon on Friday afternoon. Dr. Moulo, who is not a Seventh-day Adventist, smiled and explained to Matthias that every Friday evening the Spirit of God visits earth in a special way, and He goes back on Saturday evening. For this reason Dr. Moulo performs his most delicate surgical operations on Friday evenings. So convinced was this non-Adventist physician of God’s help and presence with him on Friday evening that he told Matthias that if his surgery had taken place on another day, he would have passed away.
Dr. Moulo’s faith is an unusual lesson for God’s remnant church! The preparation of the Sabbath, the welcoming of Yahweh, the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Israel, is to be taken very seriously. For He visits Planet Earth every Friday evening to bless and protect His children. Hallelujah! What a vivid testimony that challenges the way God’s people should prepare for the Sabbath and worship Him “in spirit and in truth” (John 4:24, KJV) on that day!
A Sabbath to Come
Today Matthias discharges his duty at the WAD office happily, and he is in good health. We praise the Lord for His mercy toward His servant, and we pray that all God’s children and servants around the globe may serve Him wholeheartedly until He comes back to take us home when, finally, our eyes shall be opened, and we shall see Him face to face.
This reminds us of what John says: “Beloved, now we are children of God; and it has not yet been revealed what we shall be, but we know that when He is revealed, we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is. And everyone who has this hope in Him purifies himself, just as He is pure” (1 John 3:2, 3). Until then, may the Lord help His people to prepare to welcome Him every Friday evening, fellowship with Him during the holy hours of the Sabbath, and close the Sabbath with Him every Saturday evening as is well presented in His Word (Ex. 20:8-11; Isa. 58:13, 14; Luke 23:54-56)!
One day we shall meet on that great Sabbath as He has promised, and never part again nor experience sickness, death, sorrow anymore.
The Strangest of Accidents
Recently a terrible and strange accident took place in the Eastern Nigeria Union Conference territory. On Thursday, May 30, 2013, 10 members of the Abali family were traveling from the eastern city of Port Harcourt to Babcock University in the west, where their beloved Margaret and Chinyere Abali were due to graduate on June 2, 2013. Happy Abali, oldest son of the Abalis, an oil engineer by profession and one of our stalwart church elders, reported the strange and horrible news to us: a motorcyclist who suddenly changed lanes from right to left collided with the brand-new chartered van that carried the Abali family. The van somersaulted and caught fire, killing eight members of the same family. An unspeakable tragedy!
When asked to share his feeling about the whole situation, Elder Abali answers, “Who am I to question God’s authority?” God, he knows, is “too wise to err.”1 In the depths of his pain, Abali drew strength and reassurance from the fact that the previous Sabbath, the family had partaken of the Lord’s Communion together. Now, for him, it was as if it were a way of saying “goodbye.”
A Strange Twist—Not everyone in the blazing inferno died. Two of Margaret’s younger brothers, 5-year-old Unique and his younger brother Blossom (4), had the strangest of stories to tell.
“An uncle came,” they explained to Abali. He opened the window of the van, and removed both of them from the burning vehicle. They heard their mother, their baby brother, and the other family members crying. An inexplicable reality!
No one but the Lord can answer our questions about the specific reason for this particular accident. He alone knows the specific identity of the uncle. He alone can explain the way and tell why two little children were delivered from the horror. He alone has the answers.
We can say that, as at Mount Perazim (Isa. 28:21), the Lord did perform “His unusual act.” And we can continue to pray in submission and in supplication that His will be done, and that to Him alone be all glory. By and by we shall be able to say more.
Ellen White wrote: “The time is at hand when there will be sorrow in the world that no human balm can heal. The Spirit of God is being withdrawn. Disasters by sea and by land follow one another in quick succession. How frequently we hear of earthquakes and tornadoes, of destruction by fire and flood, with great loss of life and property! Apparently these calamities are capricious outbreaks of disorganized, unregulated forces of nature, wholly beyond the control of man; but in them all, God’s purpose may be read. They are among the agencies by which He seeks to arouse men and women to a sense of their danger.”2
The Lord may allow certain things or situations we do not understand now. We will when we reach home. This is a call to get ready. Tragedy can strike anyone, anywhere. The precaution of renting a brand-new van did not protect the Abalis. The unknown can strike easily. If the “Uncle” chooses to come and rescue us, we praise Him.
If He allows us to experience calamity, let us be ready and praise Him still. For His faithfulness is sure. In the mean time, we weep with the Abalis in “the blessed hope” of the resurrection morning (Titus 2:13; 1 Thess. 4:13-18). Thank you for praying for us in the WAD. n
1 Ellen G. White, Testimonies for the Church (Mountain View, Calif.: Pacific Press Pub. Assn., 1948), vol. 1, p. 120.
2 Ellen G. White, Prophets and Kings (Mountain View, Calif.: Pacific Press Pub. Assn., 1917), p. 277.
Josephine Wari is associate education director, and coordinator of Shepherdess International for the West-Central Africa Division.
Gilbert Wari, her husband, is WAD president.
SURVIVORS: Unique and Blossom (center) were the only ones who survived the auto accident that claimed the lives of several family members.