A building inspector from Asia tells his story
"I was born in a small remote village in my country, where no-one could tell me anything about Jesus. However, many hundreds of years ago, there were followers of Jesus in this country. Near my house were the ruins of an old building where they used to meet. When I was small, I often played in these ruins. Two questions came into my mind: 'Who is the God of this building? Is he the God of my religion?' These were big questions for a little boy. However, I believe that God put these questions in my mind. For the next 29 years, I was searching for the answers to my questions.
The next step in my life was a move to our capital city with my brother, so we could study at university. By day, I studied engineering. In the evenings, I worked in a small shop, to pay for my studies. One time when we were studying, my brother mentioned that he found a paper on the ground, asking people to go to a meeting about the Bible. 'Where is it?' I asked.
'Oh,' he said, 'I tore it up. It was only for traitors of our country.'
I was sad that I could not learn about the God of that old building. During the summer, I looked at the many tourists coming to our country, hoping to see someone carrying a Bible, but I found no-one. All this time, I was careful to follow the rules of my religion (such as washing before prayers), because I really did want to know God and do what he wanted.
The man was drunk
After leaving university, I served two years in the army, got married, and then began my first job as a building inspector. One day, I was inspecting a new building which was a religious meeting place. A man who was drunk came along. I then saw people coming out from their prayer time. They went over to
him and said things like, 'Look at that!'
'How terrible! If only he would come and say his prayers instead!'
'He should be like us, upright and good.'
As I listened to these people, I wondered, 'Would God have said those things if he had been here? No, I think he would have given love and help to the drunk man.' I was not happy with this way of thinking. More and more, I began to see contradictions in my religion.
My new radio
Four or five years later, I bought a short-wave radio. As I was turning the dial one day, I heard the end of some words about Jesus, and an address to write to. So I sent a letter to the radio station. They sent me a programme list and I began to listen regularly. About a year later, I received a letter from someone living near me. He said that he too listened to the radio programme and wanted to meet me. I was so happy, I invited him to my house, even offering to pay for his taxi. On his first visit, he gave me two parts of the Bible – the 'gospels' written by Luke and John.
As I eagerly read them, I learned about the God I had been searching for. I started to feel the pain of wrong things in my life, but also to see that Jesus
could clean me from these things. So I asked him to do this. I had finally found the real loving God I had been looking for."