Sherife was more than just a Mwinika man to Bible translator Phil Henderson. He was a fellow believer, one of the first Mwinika Bible teachers, and a Bible translation helper. He was also a friend. And now Phil sat by Sherife as he lay on his deathbed.
Tears of Joy and Sorrow
Phil remembered another time when Sherife lay critically ill in bed. Before he was saved. Before teaching even began in the Mwinika village.
"I AM CRYING BECAUSE OF MY UNSAVED FAMILY MEMBERS. … I KNOW WHERE I AM GOING, BUT I AM WORRIED ABOUT THEM. … I DIDN’T KNOW GOD UNTIL YOU CAME AND TOLD ME ABOUT HIM. NOW I KNOW HIM. NOW I AM GOING TO BE WITH HIM. THANK YOU FOR COMING. THANK YOU BEYOND THANKING. THANK YOU."
But this time it was different. Sherife was a believer. Still, it was hard to watch as tears filled Sherife’s eyes, spilling down his cheeks.
“Let me translate my tears,” Sherife said to Phil. “I am crying because of my unsaved family members. … I know where I am going, but I am worried about them. … I didn’t know God until you came and told me about Him. Now I know Him. Now I am going to be with Him. Thank you for coming. Thank you beyond thanking. Thank you.”
About a week later, Sherife was ushered into the presence of his Saviour.
A Passion for God and His Word
Of greater importance to Sherife than “translating his tears” was translating God’s Word into the Mwinika language. He was one of several Bible translation helpers that worked tirelessly alongside Phil to see this translation come to fruition.
But as of his death, the project was not yet done. Please pray for Phil Henderson and the other Mwinika men as they continue translating, looking to the day when the Mwinika Bible translation is complete. Would you also pray for the funds needed to make the translation a reality? Your prayers can have an impact!