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Mike Shreve was a teacher of yoga at four universities. (The portrait above was drawn by one of his students in 1970.) Then a spiritual rebirth brought him into a real relationship with God and drastically changed his heart, his life and his belief system.  Read his story here.

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Last Updated–03/19/09

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Adrian Sober's Personal Story

I was raised in a Christian family who attend the Methodist Church. From an early age I attended Church and Sunday School regularly. I would have to say that in looking back, I was probably just going to Church because I was sent or it was the 'right' thing to do. Then the questions started and I began to doubt and look other places to fill that empty place inside all of us.

I asked lots of hard questions about Christianity. The worship in the Methodist Church was very dry and predictable and involved a lot of meaningless things to me. I thought there had to be something more to 'church' than this. It was boring and still left me empty. It was at this point I stopped going to Church. It just seemed too ritualistic. There had to be more to experiencing God than this.

In secondary school (High School in the USA) I had a friend who was an atheist and a friend who was a born-again Christian. I was more or less somewhere between these two places at that point in my life – around the age of 17. The conversations would usually go like this. The atheistic friend would ask: How could God allow...[fill in the blank of any ‘evil’ that blankets our planet today] How could an all-knowing God allow such things? The born again friend would reply, defending their belief and I would just somehow be sitting on fence. I did not disregard both sides but I was not convinced of anything really.

I somehow gravitated towards atheism. This was because my intellect was keeping me from believing in some God. There were too many questions. I started to read a lot about other religions, Buddhism and Islam mainly. Nothing seemed wrong with these worldviews, so maybe there were different paths to God. Maybe all roads lead to Rome. Maybe all I had to do was just be a "good" person and I would be fine. I did not need Christianity or any other belief system to guide me.

There was then that all-powerful force called music. . I would also say that the music I listened to at this time (late teens, early 20s) served only to cement my unbelief and further kept me disconnected from Jesus Christ.

I listened to a lot of rap/hip-hop and I was a huge fan of the group, The Wu-Tang Clan. The members of this group subscribe to the Nation of Gods and Earth (http://www.ibiblio.org/nge/) worldview. Some of their beliefs were scattered throughout their music, interviews and lifestyles. These include:

  • That black people are the original people of the planet earth
  • That the science of Supreme Mathematics is the key to understanding man's relationship to the universe
  • That the blackman is god and his proper name is ALLAH. Arm, Leg, Leg, Arm, Head.
  • That black people are the fathers and mothers of civilization

 

This whole concept of the self-sufficiency of man was very appealing to me. Maybe I did not need God. He was inside me. I was a god. Their doctrine was all over their music. Phrases commonly heard would be "Peace God..." "How you doing God?" ..etc. Clearly indicating that they were gods. God was in them. I would never say I held on to this belief, I just knew it was out there and I listened to their music for a long time. All this time I was not going to Church. I didn't want to hear a thing about Jesus. Maybe the Wu, as they are commonly called, had it right. All this time Jesus still loved me. He was still beckoning me to come, knocking on the door of my heart, waiting to enter in. But next stop was the New Age.

I was introduced to Tai Chi by an elderly lady who invited me to a class one day. She was totally into Tai Chi and soon I was hooked! Even though the doctrine was never taught at class, from talking to a lot of the participants, it was clear a lot of them did not believe in God or they just concentrated on living 'good' lives. The lady who introduced me to Tai Chi always said she never believed in the Devil, it was simply "De Evil" in man and the devil did not exist. It was then I started to read up on astral projection, theosophy and out of body experiences. It was all very new and exciting to me.

Tai Chi is moving meditation. Although I did have many relaxing evenings of practice, I did also have many, what I would call, out of body experiences. I would be sleeping and I could not move or talk, I just felt this supernaturally powerful force holding me down. t was scary. I had a lot of out of body experiences around the time I was practicing Tai Chi. I paid little attention to these as I was so impressed with Tai Chi. It was so relaxing. For that hour we practiced, nothing else in the world mattered. It was all so blissful and relaxing. I read up on out of body experiences and concluded, based on my research, that I was fighting them and that was the cause of my fear. I now know that I was just opening the door of demonic oppression and I had actually seen the eyes of one of these creatures from the spirit world that we often forget exists.

But there was still that emptiness. Tai Chi never filled that space. I contemplated starting Yoga classes to go along with my Tai Chi, but I never got around to it. I left Barbados to study in England in September 2000, so I had to end my Tai Chi classes in Barbados as well.

Off to London, England, I went. I attended graduate school at University of Westminster Harrow Campus. Coming from a background in Information Technology, I thought that doing the Electronic Commerce programme would be a good move.

Spiritually, I was still empty inside. Tai Chi did not fill the space, neither did the music, atheism, nothing. Living in Europe was very new to me. I'd never lived on my own before, further more in a developed country and a city as big as London. In London, I never went to Church regularly. I had some friends from all over Europe, USA, Malaysia and religion was never discussed. There was one Muslim in the group, another friend thought that God was in everything, a tree was God, a rock was God. there was also a Catholic in the group and I was just nowhere, no belief, no conviction, nothing. I would say that spiritually I did not develop at all whilst in London. I did finish graduate school, but in my quest to fill that empty space, it did not help one bit.

On my return to Barbados in October of 2001, I still had no conviction as far as belief was concerned. I had just come from a city where I got the impression, the people there had no respect for anything remotely religious. Society was very secular and this only kept me further disconnected. I had just come from a place where there was still images of capitalism in its most advance form and society seemed to function in a very self-sufficient way. No reminders of experiencing religion were present. The most ‘religious’ experience was probably seeing some Muslims and Hindus dressed in their traditional garments.

Even during all my unbelief, my searching, I felt the Holy Spirit was dealing with me. I was searching, genuinely searching, but I had to rid myself of human reasoning (intellect, pride) and just submit myself to my loving Creator. I was trying to answer ever question, I discovered you can’t. I was trying to reason everything out - impossible. I was trying to figure God out. You can’t. If you could ‘figure out’ God with human reasoning and intellect, He would not be so powerful. Just think about it.

I submitted in August 2003 at The People's Cathedral by responding to an altar call. I submitted. Jesus loves me. He loves me now and He loved me when I was searching and did not believe in Him. Blessed be the Lord our God, who is truly worthy of all praise and adoration.

I was baptized in water and I continue to seek God and to be obedient to His will. I just want to serve Him and to use my talents to expose untruths and to glorify Him and let my light shine so that others may come to know Him as well, for He is the truth. I am no longer empty but filled with the indwelling of the Holy Spirit and all is well.

There are millions of pages on the Internet and you could be reading anyone of them, but you are reading my testimony. This is not by chance, that out of millions of pages you are here. Your loving Creator is beckoning for you to come home and enter into His presence. Do not try to figure out everything now. You will always have questions. Seek the author of the doctrine and He will guide you into all truth. He will reveal the True Light.

God Bless you on your spiritual journey.

Adrian Sobers
You may e-mail Adrian by clicking here.

 


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