The Toucouleur People
of West Africa
A True Toucouleur story…
Babbo sat dejectedly shaking his head. "It was Allah's will..." He kept repeating, more to himself than to anyone else.
Babbo's* best friend Abdo*, had died this morning. Abdo became sick just after the great feast of Tabaski. And since then, for the past three weeks, he had been suffering increasing pain and attacks of delirium caused by an intestinal constriction.
Despite good advice and the pleadings of well meaning friends, Abdo and his family chose to consult a Marabout 'spiritual healer', rather than travel the 45km to the regional hospital at Ndjoum. Worst than that, even the local doctor, after examining Abdo's bloated abdomen, thought it unnecessary to rush of to hospital immediately, declaring "In-shallah, God willing, all should be better in a day or two..."
"Yes," continued Babbo, "it is Allah's will. At least now Abdo has died here at home in his own toilet. If we'd taken him to hospital, he would have died in Ndjoum - far from home. "Yes, Abdo died at peace with God. His last words, as we helped him to the toilet were, 'Bish-millah', in the name of Allah..."
Babbo rose, said his good-byes, and walked of into the night, towards the new dawn gathering on the horizon. For him, 'In-shallah', tomorrow will be a new day... Abdo however, will never see the light again; Neither the light of day, nor the light of eternity.
Like many Toucouleur people, Abdo and Babbo are in bondage to the Prince of Darkness. Their lives bound up in endless religious rituals, folk practices and fatalism. Their god, un-compassionate and unreliable, a god whose will is unclear and who leaves his subjects to stumble around in ignorance...
How many more Abdo's will stumble into 'the paradise' of eternal darkness? Who will be responsible to lead Babbo and his friends to the message of the True Light and abundant life in Jesus Christ?
Is God calling you to be a light to this nation?
(*Names have been changed.)
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