Roaring like a lion

Bongane Radebe

Bongane Radebe used to be happy only when he stole.

He recalls with sorrow his days of frequent housebreaking so he could sell whatever he stole and buy "drugs and more drugs".

His habit caught up with him. He was caught on CCTV footage and arrested by police before being thrown in prison.

At that time his mother was very ill, but he says he did not think about that; only when he got to prison did he fear he had lost her. And as he sat in his cell he began thinking for the first time about what he wanted out of his life.

"I was not happy at that time," he says. "But when I used to steal I was happy because I felt I was winning."

A fellow inmate told Bongane about Jesus and invited him to a church service.

Bongane had heard about God before from friends and family, but had always brushed the idea of Him aside.

"I did not care," he says. "I used to tell them, there is no God, He does not exist because we have nothing." He accepted his friend's offer anyway.

"I started to attend the church service," he recalls, "and I accepted Jesus as my Lord and Savior and continued going.

"I saw myself preaching the gospel of God to people, roaring like a lion.

"Jesus is the Lord," he says today with newfound happiness and a sense of purpose for his life. "Jesus is the way, the light, and the truth. Whatever you ask in Jesus' name, you will find it.

"You have to accept Jesus as your Lord so that you may see the Kingdom of God.

"God always protects us and always provides for us. Accept Jesus and you will see the changes in your life.

"God is good all the time. He is always righteousness in all He does.

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