Eyes opened to light

Elias Mbele
Elias Mbele

Tiredness from living in the dark drew 31-year-old Elias Mbele to seek the truth that would bring light into his world.

"I was wondering around living my life without Jesus and I have done so many wrong things," Elias admits.

"My mother passed away and things got even worse. My family had turned their backs on me and I got to suffer even more than I was expecting."

After being convicted of robbery, Elias was sentenced to prison for 15 years but with the "help of God," he says, his sentence was reduced to eight years.

"I hated being taken for granted by my friends and my family so I wanted to prove to them, mostly my friends, that I can also be who they thought I couldn't be," Elias says.

"That had made me a bad person even more than I thought it would and I wasn't aware of how or what I had become.

"I lied a lot especially when being asked after stealing if I did it. I would say 'no, I didn't do it' but I did. That made me a very bad person not only to those I've wronged but to almost everyone in my hood. I finally got arrested for robbery and sent to prison, that is when I started praying."

Elias recalls always having "believed" that Jesus was who He said he was, but his life and his actions did not show it.

After being inspired by his cellmates, Elias attended the Christian church in the prison. He decided to go and hear the word of God just for one day but says God spoke to him and he never stopped going to praise Him.

"I believed that Jesus is the King and He died for me on the cross and I wanted to give myself to God," he explains.

"I have realized that I have been and still was 'in the dark' and I took the decision to go to church and let God help me restore and rebuild my life. I also needed him to be part of me and my life."

Despite describing himself as "not the praying type," Elias now says, "I can't go to sleep without praying".

"My heart, my body and my soul are the things that prompted me to decide that I needed to accept the Lord Jesus as my Lord and Savior. God has helped open my eyes and now I can see the light," he adds.

"Whenever I feel bad or like doing something wrong [Jesus] makes me remember Him and I pray for Him to help me overcome the evil thought and the devil himself."

To other prisoners, Elias says; "Just give God a chance to be your teacher and see what will happen to you and your lives!"

He concludes with his favorite verse from Jeremiah chapter 29, verse 11, which says, "For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future."

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