Child receives shoebox gift, mom finds ‘a kind of love that doesn’t exist in Islam’

Clinton and his mother, Mary, in front of church Samaritan's Purse

By Mark Ellis

God began to draw the child’s heart away from Islam even before he received his shoebox gift. As he learned that Jesus was more than a prophet, his mother became intrigued by what he shared, and a powerful love she had never known.

“We moved from my hometown to Meru and all the people in our neighborhood were Muslim, so we became Muslim,” Mary told Samaritan’s Purse. As a single mom, she moved there seeking a community that would help her and her son Clinton. After the move, a surprising series of events began to unfold.

In Kenya, Islam has been making gains along the coast and the northern border with Somalia, a Muslim stronghold. Meru, five hours north of Nairobi, is a major hub and common destination for transplanted Somalis.

At the nearby mosque Clinton attended with his mother, the instructors caned his legs when he mispronounced the Koran’s Arabic verses.

One day he had enough and told his mother he didn’t want to return to his Islamic classes.

“Where will you go?” she asked.

“I want to go to church,” he replied. “The Lord will tell me where.”

Mary was surprised by his response, unaware the God of the Bible had begun to draw her son.

By the Lord’s providence, a few days later a friend invited Clinton to attend his church.

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