A few weeks into the COVID-19 pandemic, Cotonou, the capital of Benin, buzzed with activity. Soap and water stations were set up in front of businesses, and almost everyone wore a mask covering their mouth and nose. Most laborers worried about contracting the virus but continued working, hoping to make some money before the end of the day. Although their jobs were deemed permissible during the lockdown, workers complained of few consumers, which reduced their daily earnings.
As the pandemic unfolded further, the crucial need to encourage people with the message of salvation became clear. People searched for answers everywhere. Our TTI team in Cotonou knew they had to do something. The team took to the streets to deliver messages of hope.
Justin was among the people reached in the streets of Cotonou. He had looked for a job long before coronavirus hit Cotonou, making life harder for everyone. Amid lockdowns, Justin showed up in different establishments, asking for employment. However, all the workplaces declined his applications.
When Justin met Euloge in the streets, he shared his belief in ancient rituals and his frustrations at getting a job. Euloge shared his testimony with him. Justin found reassurance that Christ could do wonders in his life, just as he had transformed Euloge’s life. He yielded his belief in traditional gods and accepted Jesus. Justin meets with Euloge to read Scripture and share what God has revealed to him. He has already shared the Gospel with his parents and a few of his friends.
Despite the persisting severity of COVID-19, many in Cotonou now return home with incredible strength and joy. Although they face the same desperate conditions, they feel Christ’s closeness towards them. Twenty new believers now carry eternal hope and hold to the promises of Christ. They believe that by the will of God, they will get through the difficulties and anxieties surrounding them.
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