Monday, 23 June 2014

Why I became Adventist #1

'Why I became Adventist' series is finally here. *yipeeeee yay* I am super excited to share the first testimony from a friend - Thamsanqa Mawerera aka TeeCee but I call him Sanqa. Click here to read the preview/introduction of the series. I pray many will be blessed and encouraged!
This is by no means meant to be a story for entertainment but I hope my story will encourage us to be more open about our faith and stand up for what we believe in!

A lot of us Adventists take being born into an Adventist family for granted and we have become too comfortable to the extent that we have lost sight and focus of why God put us on this earth. I really don't know if I should say I've had the privilege of being in the Adventist church and other churches but this is my story:

My spiritual journey has been nothing short of being a rollercoaster ride. Let me start by saying God wasn't joking when he said do not be unequally yoked (2 Corinthians 6:14). My parents are both Christians which isn't a bad thing BUT my dad isn't Adventist. My mum has always been Adventist and like many Adventist girls out there dating non-Adventists guys, she thought she could get him to become a member of the Adventist church upon marriage but I don't blame her for that so before you think I'm condemning her I'm not. I respect my mother very much. My dad used to let her go to church on a Sabbath with no issues. Fast forward to when I was born, 17 August 1989 and started going to church a few years later. I loved the children's sermons, the classes and everything else about the Sabbath and it quickly grew on me.

As time went by, my dad stopped us from going to church on a Sabbath. Obviously as a kid I had a lot of questions regarding us not going to church but never got an answer, a satisfactory answer that is. With time we all got used to the idea of not going to church except my mum. She had to pretend to be fine with it just to make her husband 'happy'. By this time I was at a Catholic junior school and I was getting used to their doctrines. Then in 2002, I moved to an Anglican school for high school. Their doctrines weren't very different from Catholic doctrines so it didn't take me long to adjust but you can only imagine the confusion I had. All the Adventist teachings had evaporated, I started believing in worshipping on a Sunday then ended up not even liking the idea of going to church at all.

One day when I got home from school my mum was super excited, she told my sister and I, that our dad was now going to church then she paused for a little bit and said, 'on a Sunday.' I don't know how and why it triggered an 'oooh yeah but we believe in the seventh day Sabbath' in my mind but I also asked myself why we believed that and decided I'll study for myself and find out. Be that as it may I was happy my father was now going to church but we were still banned from going to church on a Sabbath and forced to go to church on Sunday. When I started prayerfully studying and seeking for God's truth and learning how God wants us to live and worship him, I became less keen on attending the Sunday church. I came to the understanding that Sunday isn't the biblical day of worship (see: Genesis 2:1-3; Exodus 20:8-11) 
and wasn't the day God rested but it was the day Jesus rose and there was no evidence in the bible that pointed to the fact that the holy Sabbath was changed from the seventh-day (Saturday) to the first day (Sunday). However, I was afraid to tell my father that Sunday isn't the right day of worship because he never wanted to hear anything of the sort.

After much prayer the Lord came through for us, my dad allowed us to resume attending church on Sabbath, on the condition that we would still have to attend his church on Sunday. We praised the Lord and continued in prayer. Then in 2008, I was truly convinced that Sunday isn't the day of worship and shared my conviction with my mother, sister and brother who also believed it to be true. My greatest challenge came when I decided to tell my dad that I won't be going to church on Sundays anymore. That took 2 whole years to do believe it or not because I was scared.

One Sunday morning in 2010 I decided to stay in bed and not get ready for church. My dad summoned me to the kitchen, when I saw him I could sense that he was angry. He asked why I had decided not to go to church. At that moment I remember feeling scared to even open my mouth fearing the worst then I said a quick silent prayer, sat down then confidently said to him, "because it isn't the right day of worship." he just stopped eating and looked at me and didn't say a word but I wasn't done yet. "If you show me where in the Bible it says that we should worship on the 1st day Sunday and not the 7th day Sabbath then I'll gladly go get ready for church and forget about the Sabbath," I said. At this point I was feeling very confident of what I was talking about because I felt that God was with me at that very moment. Everyone else was just looking at me surprised that I just sprung this on my dad. This infuriated my dad even more but I was expecting it and then he started shouting at me and even called me a rebel. He started to blame my mum but I jumped to her defense and said it's not her fault and that it was my own conviction but little did I know that it paved the way for everyone to speak out and stand up for their belief and faith.

From that day I've never looked back at being an Adventist. My older sister, little brother and I were later baptized (while our mom got re-baptised) into the Seventh-Day Adventist Church. My prayer and our prayer as a family is that God speaks to our dad so that he can join us in worshipping on God's holy day because he still goes to church on Sunday of which I'm still thankful that he goes to church.

I'll leave you with this. I strongly believe God gave us the courage and words to say to my dad when we were scared to tell him about the Sabbath and why we worship on that day. God hears and answers prayers so don't ever give up on prayer. You might be married or dating/courting an unbeliever or being threatened by relatives that they will disown you if you join the SDA church just keep praying to God that He guides your footsteps and also talks to those around you that they might also be convicted and follow God's truths. Isaiah 40:8 says, "The grass whithers, the flower fades; but the Word of our God will stand forever."

God bless you all!

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