Samuel, 30, lives in Chennai and enjoys sharing his faith.
I was raised in a Muslim family, but I didn’t really practice the faith. In fact, I didn’t practice any religion. I enjoyed the pleasures of life, but I found that these pleasures didn’t bring lasting happiness. I ended up feeling that I was a failure, and nothing meant anything to me anymore.
I looked at nature and realized that there was a power in nature, something supernatural. There must be a god, but I didn’t know which god was truly God—or if any of them were truly God. I wavered between atheism and God—whoever that was. In books some people wrote in favor of God; others wrote in favor of atheism. I wasn’t sure what to think. I didn’t have any friends I could ask—there was no one I could trust.
I was not at peace. I felt lost—without direction, without a course in life. I had so many questions. Something inside me said there is a God, but then I’d see something bad and think, If there’s a God, why is this happening? As I wavered, my bad character traits continued.
I tried to improve my character, stop the bad habits, but I felt powerless to accomplish this. I went to Hindu temples, several mosques, and even Christian churches searching for a god to help me improve my character. In the Christian churches I learned about Jesus, the God who could save me, and I accepted Him as my Savior. I read the four Gospels and was impressed that God was willing to change me; I just have to be willing to be changed.
A guy I worked with named Saviour, an Adventist Christian, became my friend. Whenever we had free time we’d talk about God. I was eagerly seeking, and Saviour had answers. We read the Bible together and talked for hours about religion. One day he explained to me that most Christians worship on Sunday, but God never ordained Sunday as a day to worship Him. He wanted us to worship on Sabbath—Saturday. I hadn’t heard this before, and I thought Saviour was trying to separate Christians. I urged him to go only by what the Bible says. Saviour agreed, and I began searching for what was really true. I listened to sermons on TV and read lots of books and magazines in search of the truth. Saviour gave me some books, and when I read them, I began searching for collaborative truth. But wherever I searched, I ended up at Adventism. It rang true.
I began attending church with Saviour and in time asked for Bible studies to prepare for baptism. I was baptized in 2010 and changed my name to Samuel. Lots of the people I had questioned ask me why I joined this church, and I tell them I have found the truth and don’t want to go away from this truth. I try to share as Saviour and other Adventists have shared with me.
I shared my faith with one family, and they’ve now been baptized. Raj, with whom I’m working, has also come to the Adventist Church because of my testimony. He was a Christian of another denomination, and I was able to explain the Sabbath beauty to him. Soon, he will be baptized.
My entire family is Muslim. They’re unhappy with my decision, but they don’t understand how bad my lifestyle was before and how good it is now. They allow me to live in the house, but they have told me they won’t support me. That’s OK. God is my support, my family, my hope. I hope that one day my loved ones will see the positive changes God has made in my life.