Pakistani, Muslim encounters Jesus and is saved

There are many people in this world who do not consider the realms of
possibility that the world is confronted with, with so much mind blowing
diversity, they do not question because the do not expect an answer, I
was one of them. That is not to say that I did not question the
environment, the culture and religion that I was born into. Indeed, I have
always been opinionated and I’m sure my Pakistani, Muslim family will
testify to this, because I have never been one to blindly accept any wind
of doctrine or advice without first considering it’s credibility.

It all started when I was 14 years of age. I had a very sheltered
childhood, I had plenty of friends and relatives but I rarely saw friends
outside of school and relatives other than in the holidays, primarily
because they lived so far away. I received both love and materials
comforts at all stages in my life but at the age of 14 something changed. I
used to thing life was a bed of roses and people were my sunshine but
pretty soon I was forced to take oFf the rose tinted glasses and realise
that naivety is what kills the honest and pure of heart. What in my
innocence I thought were smiles of alliance and sentiments of peace were
in fact full of guile and deceit. That really hurt me because it hurt
all the people I loved and pretty soon it became painfully evident that
their hearts were callous because they were fuelled with pride and
bitterness and that had a life of it’s own and it was gnawing away at
conscience and their souls. “Why are they self-righteous?” I would o
ften implore “Do they think that God looks to their five times a day
prayers and not their hearts?” The hypocrisy just made my blood boil.

What started off as a defiant act to open their eyes and show them the
wounds of self infliction my agenda went off on a religious tangent
because that was the best way to show them that they were walking in
darkness and not in light; they were not righteous so why have the audacity
to exalt yourself to obscurity when you have the righteousness of a
mitochondria! I began praying to God, ever so sincerely, that He would
put an end to all the bitching and backstabbing. Everything that was on
my heart I gave it up to Him but I had no peace because all I could see
around me was death and self-destruction. I became aware of my own
weaknesses and all my own faults in response to what I was seeing. I was
filled with so much anger and hatred for these people that my mind was
numb and my heart was weak. I suffered from insomnia and all I could
do was pray to my God, where ever He was, while I waited for morning.

After six years of grieving and several years of insomnia I was
physically and mentally exhausted. These people will never change I thought
on numerous occasions and I don’t think I can live in their shadow.
Their emotions fuelled them but they drained me of energy and the will to
live. Despite all this I didn’t stop praying to God because I was
subtly aware of a force around me but I just couldn’t identify or even
pinpoint it, but it was there, that’s all that mattered but sometimes I
wondered whether it was my imagination. At the age of 18 I went through
more pain and more heartache and then a nervous breakdown. That isn’t
because the love of God, where ever He was ever left me, but simply
because I was entitled to one.

At the age of 19 I went off to university to study Law, all that
thinking had primed me on a philosophical level. The art of burying yourself
in books is the ideal way to keep your sanity and this was an ideal
profession to burn my fire. In January 2001 I had an argument with the
president of the Islamic Society and his sidekick about culture and
religion. For hours they tried to inspire me but I was so scarred by the
culture, the people and the sheer hypocrisy of it all that I told Him in
anger that Allah does not exist because if he did he would have
answered me in those six damned years and if he couldn’t be there for me when
I prayed to him with such sincerity and truth, then as far as I’m
concerned he is not God because the very notion of God would imply that he
has a heart!

A few weeks later, a friend of mine was putting posters up on a Sunday,
when it was cold, dark and wet, to advertise a Christian worship
evening. I looked at her in disbelief when I read the posters and realised
that the first ever worship session was in just two hours. “Look, it’s
a Sunday, it’s cold, dark and wet. No-one is going to see these
posters, poor so-and-so is going to be preaching to himself!” I declared
bluntly (I told you I was opinionated). Anyway, after going around the
campus putting up posters in the pouring rain I felt a twinge of pity.
The girl was so sweet and so in love with God that it never occurred to
her that we both looked rather absurd, especially her. Out of pity, I
reluctantly told her that I would come to the service as it was that
first one and the chances were that no-one would turn up except her and
maybe another friend of ours.

We gathered into the round room and waited for the preaching, singing
and praying to start. Almost instantaneously I felt the silence, it was
peaceful. There was no need for words or even thoughts, I just sat in
awe, basking in tranquillity. Shortly, the sermon started and I
listened politely. Somewhere in the middle I thought “What! Jesus is God!
Wasn’t he just a mere mortal? Are these people sane?” but I continued
listening politely. All of a sudden, I was filled with emotion, awe is
the only word I can use to describe it. I felt that something within me
was nurturing and healing. I did not speak under the soft glow of the
lights, I just absorbed the power of God, it felt divine. I vaguely
remember putting my hand up for prayer, to receive Jesus into my life,
but I also knew it wasn’t really me, it was the spirit within me that
moved my hand, opened my heart and opened my lips to confess that “Jesus
Christ, the Son of God, was my Lord and Saviour”. As hands were la
id on me I felt the Holy Spirit renewing my soul, it was a tingling,
burning sensation that moved slowly over my body to the top of my face.
I felt that if I opened my eyes I would see smoke or steam resonation
from my skin like fog on a winter day. All this passed like a dream, I
felt I was there but I wasn’t there, like my body was detached from my
soul. After the service I said goodbye to my two friends and went to
my flat and cried. I slept like a baby for maybe 12 hours. You may not
think that’s excessive but after suffering from insomnia for several
years, anything above four solid hours is abnormal. I went in to
university the next day, one of the friend who attended the service asked me
how I felt. I told him I felt good and that for the first time in years
I slept like a baby. He smiled and said that after I said goodbye they
prayed that I would sleep peacefully. Since that day, February 25
2001, I lost my insomnia.

But it didn’t end there. They say “the mind is the primary
battlefield”, how true. I thought about my Muslim family, relatives and
community and realised that I was walking on thin ice. I knew deep in my heart
what I experienced was real but the consequences were drastic, I was
considering the cost and I didn’t like what the “bank statement” read.
I’ve always hated lies, even white lies, and having such a personality
makes it impossible to lie to yourself. Faith they say is blind, but it
is not ignorant so I submerged myself in books and the internet. For
four months I studied the origins of Judaism, Christianity and Islam. I
compared and contrasted Biblical and Quranic scriptures. I read
academic arguments and discussions between Islamic and Christian scholars to
prove to myself that the Quran and not the Bible was the Word of God,
anything to convince myself that what I felt was just a figment of my
imagination and I truly wanted this to be the case so that I would
n’t have to go through the ordeal of telling my family that I had
become a Christian. I tried ever so hard not to be a Christian but the
more I researched and the more I studied my faith in Christianity became
stronger and stronger and the more the truth dawned on me that Islam was
a false religion, Muhammed is not a prophet and Allah is not God.
Nevertheless, I held on to a vain hope that maybe I could find some
loophole in the Quran, just something to hang on to but in my heart I knew
that I was lying to myself and I hated that because I loved God so much.

One evening at about 10.00pm, my friends (for simplicity’s sake I will
refer to them as X and Y) decided to go to a certain place where we
could meet Z in the evening. Z had not arrived so X, Y and I (Me) decided
to walk down the deserted street to kill time while he arrived. All of
a sudden, for no apparent reason I was overwhelmed with a feeling of
dread, not fear but dread as if I was surrounded by evil. I couldn’t
explain it, nothing like this had ever happened before so I kept quiet
because I didn’t want to sound paranoid when there was no apparent reason
to be. This feeling just got stronger and I sensed that something was
brewing in the air, my muscles became tense and jittery and it felt
like the blood in my veins was repelling something, the something was an
evil spirit. Whatever notion I thought of what evil was did not prepare
me for this reality that knocked me senseless. A few minutes later X
said for some reason he had a really bad feeling. I stopped in my tracks
and looked at him, as far as I knew he wasn’t a Christian,
yet he was sensing what I was sensing but probably not to the same
degree. I knew what it was but he didn’t because to him it was just a

We waited for Z to arrive, and then went to a restaurant, and then Y
left with Z and X and I went in his car. My senses were on red alert the
whole time, the feeling had subdued slightly over the conversation but
it remained, now back on the street the feeling came flooding back. X
and I agreed that we should get out of the place as soon as possible,
he quickly put the car in gear and we sighed with relief that we were
getting out of the place. We could see two roundabouts approaching I
didn’t pay much attention to X’s driving as my thoughts remained on what I
had sensed, what I was sensing. I soon realised that we were going
around in circles, around the same two roundabouts. I said to X “What are
you doing?” he looked at me, he was absolutely terrified. He said that
something weird was happening the roundabouts, the signs, were not
making sense. “What do you mean they’re not making sense?,” I said “Stop
messing around, it’s not funny”. Sure enough I looked at the s
igns, he was right, they did not make any sense, it was as if we were
in the twilight zone. Nothing made sense, we were in a perilous state
of confusion. We went around the same two roundabout for what was
about the sixth time and nothing made sense and both of us were completely
freaked out, there were no cars on the road, the place was deserted and
nothing made sense. My head was beginning to spin and the state of his
nerves were having an effect on his driving. I commanded him to take
the first left because I couldn’t stand being in that place with this
overwhelming feeling of dread. I thought to myself at least were on a
road that’s leaving this place but more confusion awaited us.

You’ll have to agree with me that car headlights are quite powerful so
why was it that beyond three meters everything was pitch black? We
couldn’t see the road, we didn’t know whether it was winding or straight,
we couldn’t even see the trees. The scene before us was just black, no
grey areas or shadows, just black. X was terrified that he was going
to crash into something because he couldn’t see anything at all beyond
three meters and I was terrified that I was going to faint and God knows
where I would find myself when I opened my eyes. It is at that point,
at midnight, around 12.30am that I started praying, I don’t know why I
didn’t do that earlier, I guess all I could think about was fear and my
brain was paralysed from thinking rationally when we were in the midst
of confusion. About 10 long minutes later we finally saw a sign, the
confusion was gone, the blackness had gone but the fear remained.
Neither of wanted to go home, neither of us wanted to be alone, we j
ust wanted to be in a public place where we could feel safe. We went
to Tesco’s as it was the only place that was open 24 hours. We roamed
the aisles till we felt safe again and then we went home.

The next day I woke up and went to church. I wasn’t sure whether I
should tell anyone about the experience but I didn’t need to. A friend
came up to me and asked me if I was alright and what had happened
yesterday. I was stunned because I had not told anyone and X couldn’t have
had the opportunity to tell her. I asked her how did she know that
something had happened yesterday. She said she had had a nightmare and
that she had sent a text message to M, asking him to pray for me, X and Y
because she believe we were in danger. I asked M whether she had sent
a text message to pray for me, X and Y. He showed me the message to
prove that she had sent it and here’s the crunch. The text message had
been sent between 12.30 and 1.00am, between the time when I had started

On June 1st 2001 I got baptised and since then I’ve experience one
miracle after another. Praise the Lord!

Testimony submitted to the Breadsite. To submit yours click here.