‘Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened and I will give you rest.’ Mathew 11:28. And the cinema of Jesus crucifixion were the Pillars of my lifelong relationship with Lord and realization of the significance of God in Human life. I am Monica Ooko, I was born in 1978 to a polygamous family of one husband and two wives. My mother was the first wife. 8 years my father passed on. This misfortune precipitated the beginning of trails in our lives upon which I was to overcome through the power of Jesus. These unfortunate events also represented ways in which God action prevails on human sufferings.
After the death of my father, my elder stepbrother sent us (including my mother and all my siblings) away from our home. Furthermore, he brought down our house. These misgivings meant that we had to seek refuge from one of my paternal uncles who was able to provide us with sufficient care that he could afford. As the days passed on, it came to our realization that we had to supplement some of our needs. The pressure of our life needs forced my mother to leave us behind and seek employment in a different town. Not only did my mother left us behind but also my elder brothers and sisters moved out of my uncle’s place; they had to fend for themselves. This developing situation left me as the sole comforter, provider, and protector of my younger siblings.
One year passed and at the closure of the second year, my mother returned home. God made it possible. My mother was able to establish herself in Nakuru and her return was significant because it meant that we would relocated with her to Nakuru. However, my elder brothers and sisters never had the same blessing. Streets took them. They became smokers and adopted poor life choices. Consequently, they required special attention, which my mother would not afford, in turn, they never joined us in Nakuru. In 1994, I met Nashon Ooko and we got married in the same year. My husband was a member of one of the branches of Power of Jesus churches. Power of Jesus church made it possible for my Christian life. It also acted as a pivot in my marriage by creating an enabling environment between my husband and I. The pastor also advised my husband to accept my siblings which he did. As a person, my husband has an open heart and he readily accommodates people in his life. This character might have developed from his early childhood; he was raised by a single parent (mother) after his father passed on. My husband was the sole caregiver for their family (six children), this is because his mother is aged and ill. In summary, we were about 10 family members living in a single room house. We were able to support the family with help from the church. How good is the Lord? Dear Christian reader, witness the hand of God in placing me under good care.
1989 represented new beginnings in our life. We were in a new town (Nakuru). We received that special unconditional love. The motherly love. This good life was, however, once again it was short-lived after two years, another vicious circle of sufferance occurred at our doorstep in 1991. My mother lost her job, she became ill, and after strolling with the illness she passed on. Because of our financial constraints and the already worse home environment, we laid my mother’s body to rest in Nakuru. Again, my dear reader, I was the sole caregiver for the family. I was the mother and father of my siblings.
‘But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness and all these things will be given to you as well’ Mathew 6:33.
In June 1993, a friend of mine Filmet invited me to Power of Jesus church gathering. It was at this meeting that I heard the significant bible verse, ‘come to me those who burdened…’ and the cinema of Jesus sufferance which were the cornerstone of my spiritual life and start of my salvation life. The Lord’s wonders touched my life. Additionally, the positive encouragement and continuous devotion to church activities made it possible for the growth of my Christian life. I prayed daily. I took the salvation home and my sisters and brothers began experiencing the Christian life. Other essential bible verses for my born-again life were Exodus 15:2 ‘The Lord is my strength and my song; he has become my salvation.’ and 2 Samuel 22:3 ‘my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield and horn of my salvation. He is my stronghold, my refuge and my savior- from violent men you save me.’
Testimony of Nashon Ooko
“I am Nashon Ooko. I was born in 1976 in a polygamous family in Mohuroni area, Kisumu county. I was raised by a single parent (mother) because of unsuccessful marriages which led her to have different men and consequently having children with different fathers. I had a hard lifestyle, my father never recognized him. My father would chase me away. This was because I never stayed with my biological father. I stayed with a step-father among the many ex-husbands that was currently staying with my mother.
My mother had a total of nine children consisting of seven sons and two daughters. Among our nine siblings three of them remained with their father. My mother was never at peace with a single man. She was at constant move jumping from man one man to another. This made her to move with us (four) in her home. I was the eldest among our four siblings.
Life became difficult for us. In several occasions and with increased regularity we had to work for people at a very low wage in order to have money to buy food. I would work as a herdsman in the nearest homesteads. One day during these my working hours I noticed a crusade in one of the markets in Muhuroni. It was here where my journey of salvation started. I heard the preacher refer to a scripture of Exodus 15:2 ‘The Lord shall be my strength and my Song, and He has become my Salvation; this is my God, and I will praise Him, my father’s God, and I will exalt Him.’ 2 Samuel 22:3 ‘My God, my Rock, in Him will take refuge; my Shield and the Horn of my Salvation; my Stronghold and my Refuge, my Savior- You save me from violence.’ These verses moved me and made me realize the existence of the Christian life and as he was summarizing; he called upon those who were willing to receive salvation. I was in doubt but I later felt a conviction that I was ready to accept Lord Jesus in my life. I went ahead like a person who have been waiting for an overdue sum and I received Jesus as my personal savior. This was the beginning of my Christian life. This was in 1992 in the Power of Jesus church.
1994 was the year that I began ministry work of Jesus and the activity entailed was spreading the word of gospel. This was possible through importuning God through Acts 1:8 ‘But you shall receive power (ability, efficiency, and might) when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you shall be My witnesses in Jerusalem and all Judea and Samaria and to the ends (the very bounds) of the earth.
In 1994, I got married to Monica Ooko and after coming together as a couple, my wife had a heart-felt for orphans and widows and the continuous troubling thought of how orphans lived made her to have a vision for them. I also shared in her visions. We would share our visions by praying together and during our outreach missions of preaching and spreading the gospel in every market square we preached for the needs of destitute children. Through these actions we were able to receive support such as food provisions including flour, rice and wheat. These items were used to care for the orphans that we already had. However, this was not an easy task, some individuals considered us beggars and they refused to give any assistance only giving us a stern warming and threating us not to engage them again in such matters. Additionally, the wives of the rich men would tell us that they never told the parents of the orphans to die. These difficulties caused us to importune God more and God’s blessings were witnessed in the years that followed.
In 1996, the Lord gave us the vision of African Living Word Ministry. Mathew 28:18-20 ‘Jesus approached and breaking the silence, said to them, All authority (all power of rule ) in heaven and on earth has been to Me…’ this occurred during our stay at Dunga. We mobilized the community members and shared the vision with them. They agreed and we registered the ministry with the government. After the government saw our vision, they approved our church. The community members thereafter elected signatories and a committee was constituted; Barclays bank account was opened to help us facilitate our money transactions and to encourage accountabilities. We registered the Africa Living Word as a Charity and Ministry to focus on destitute children in Africa. My wife and I are mandated to oversee the signatories’ activities. We appreciate and welcome any individual or group who is willing to help and support us in full realization of our vision and dreams.”