First, when I came to this country, I did not believe in God. Yes, people asked me, what is my religion, and I didn't have the choice to say anything else so I said I'm a Muslim, but I didn't know anything about it, nobody told me because I was not educated in Afghanistan. My cousin, he was a Mullah at the mosque and he didn't teach me anything about God, he just used to hit me. I stopped going to Mosque because I didn't understand.
6 years ago, my life was in danger and I escaped from my country. I was travelling a dangerous journey across the world to find somewhere safe. Every day I woke up, I didn't believe that I was going to be alive the next day. I was fighting for my survival.
After 6 - 7 months I arrived in England. I started going to college. I learned English language and I got some education - yes, thanks so much to all the teachers at college. I made friends over here, was offered a job, and met my girlfriend.
Last year I was invited by some friends to come to a local Spiritualist church. I started going every week on Sunday. It was good to meet people but there was not too much talking about God. At the time, one of my friends got very sick and he lost his job. He was swearing at God, and it was making me angry. I was scared to be his friend. I told him, if you don't believe in God, you shouldn't swear by him. OK, he was telling me off. He said "Jamal, I don't care. Don't tell me what to do." So I could understand something wasn't right. I stopped going to the church.
But I felt something was missing in my life. I was gambling my money, and drinking too much alcohol, and I was not putting attention into my life - what to do?
But now I am completely changed. 3 weeks ago I had a wonderful dream. All over the room was light. Jesus, Father, Lord, came to me, he said "Jamal, just wake up, come follow me, I'm alive." It was so beautiful.
I made a decision for myself to find a church and find what it means to follow Father Lord. I was cycling around the centre to find a church timetable, but only when I came back I read the timetable at this church, and I started to come here two weeks ago. First day when I came I got something from it. I heard lots of good things about Father God and Lord Jesus.
With the help of Jesus I have stopped gambling, stopped drinking alcohol, and I'm feeling so much better. Thanks to the Minister for welcoming me, to the man who gave me the Bible in the Persian language, and thanks to all the members of the community here who have given me your support. Thanks to all of you who will support me in the future. Thank you for listening.