This was the most painful period of my life. At one point I had become so depressed about my believing in LIES that I even had thoughts of suicide. How could I have been so wrong??? I couldn’t understand how I actually experienced “the power of God” moving upon me in mighty and awesome ways in the past IF this was all a lie??? I felt betrayed, humiliated, deceived, confused, unworthy, and like a complete failure.
Now, I wasn’t feeling all this because of the truths that I had come to find out about. No! For these truths were UNDENIABLE EVIDENCES that DEMANDED AN UNDENIABLE and INEVITABLE VERDICT! That verdict was that I had been lied to! I was angry with all those who taught me these lies (my parents, my teachers, my professors, etc.). The ONLY thing that helped me in this area was coming to the realization that the same dog that bit me, bit my parents too! They were only teaching me what they had been taught.
This, however, that doesn’t apply to my seminary professors. I met with my the president of the seminary I graduated from, and asked him, “Why isn’t this information a part of the curriculum and course requirements for a degree in Sacred Literature?” He said to me, “You don’t need to know about that. Besides, it is not substantial data within the context of the mission statement of this institution.” He had just told me, in a politically correct way, that I had been trained in one of the biggest LIES of all time and that I was supposed to perpetuate this LIE and train others in it.
After several years of securing the proper education of right knowledge, I efficaciously returned to the pulpit in February of 1998, when I became the pastor of Ephesus Missionary Baptist Church in St. Louis (which is another discourse all by itself). Through an old wise man, God convicted me in September of 1997 by asking me; “Son, if you young folk, whose eyes have been opened to the truth, abandon our people (who don’t know no better), then what hope is there for us?” Then he said, “God DID call you to preach, but to preach the TRUTH!”
Hence, here I am…
My reason for sharing this testimony is NOT to "convert" anyone to African consciousness…but simply to let you know that since the European invasion and theft of our people from our Motherland, we Afrikans have been born and raised in the LIE of European Religious and Cultural Imperialism and we think we are walking in the truth (because it is all that we know)! The religion that we have been made to love (Christianity), was forced upon us by European slave traders and the European “slave masters” who enslaved us. That alone should make EVERY Black man, woman and child be suspect about the slave master's religion.
There is a phrase that says you reap what you sow. Well, that certainly is true, because I have gone (and am going) through the same kind of attack that I viciously put on those brothers who compassionately respected my ignorance in 1987. I wish that I could go back and tell them that I am so sorry for attacking their awareness with my ignorance…but most of them have passed on. So when I give the oath to the Ancestors, I remember them. They were the ones that God used to plant the seed of this truth in me. Now, when I am attacked (by others who are sincerely ignorant), I see my “old” self and where I came from. That helps me to be compassionate on my attackers. I realize that they are sincerely defending what they think is the truth (just like I did).
Coming into a consciousness of your Afrikan self can (and probably will be) very painful for you. I must admit that it’s very painful being called "an antichrist" or "a messenger of satan" or "false prophet," etc., by your own people. It hurts being MISUNDERSTOOD by your family, friends and loved ones, especially when they haven't done (nor are they willing to do) the research and/or learn what you have learned; but, yet you are the one who is "deceived" and don't know what you are talking about. Believe me, THAT HURTS!
Then there are those (Christians) who feel that I “need to be stopped for the sake of the gospel!" But I know that God has called me and given me this assignment… AND I CAN'T STOP! Even if it means loved ones walking away from me and calling me "crazy" (which has happened), or even losing my physical life. And, it’s just THAT serious. The worse pain of all is when your family, friends, loved ones, and others who would misjudge you, REFUSE to do their own research to see for themselves the basis of your information or if what you are saying is true or not.
I have actually pulled books from the libraries of other ministers, turned to the proof or source of the information in question and said, "Here, man. See for yourself.” They would look away and say, "I don't want to see that." I have stood across the desks of several friends (who are pastors) and asked them, “Brother, why are you attacking me when what I have said is right here in the very commentary that you study by and use to prepare your messages?” I understand that the reason they didn’t want to “see” was because then they, too, would be compelled to change, and that is definitely NOT an option for most ministers who can be voted out and/or removed from their pulpits if they do not preach and uphold the “doctrines” of that particular church or denomination.
Another problem that I was faced with was the problem with my music ministry. Over 90% of the songs that I wrote and used to sing, I couldn't sing them anymore. I began to realize that it’s not really about worshipping GOD! It’s about worshipping “Jesus!” Even the biblical text states that Jesus said that NO ONE IS TO BE WORSHIPPED BUT GOD ALONE!!! ("Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and HIM ONLY shalt thou serve") [See Matthew 4:10 and Luke 4:8].
Did you know that (according to the biblical text) Jesus NEVER told his disciples to go preach (or teach) about him! He told his disciples, "As you go, preach, saying, The Kingdom of heaven is at hand" (Matthew 10:7). We have been programmed to give more attention to the so-called "gift" (Jesus) than the giver (God) of the gift. Not only could I not “preach” this Euro-Gentile "program" anymore...I couldn't sing about it either. Being that I was a gospel recording artist and the State Minister of Music for the State of New Jersey Churches of God in Christ, this was REALLY a major adjustment for me.
I painfully learned that my friends were my friends as long as we were in agreement “when it comes to Jesus.” I have been told many times, "The bible says, how can two walk together except they agree." I couldn't understand why other ministers (who I thought were my friends) discontinued our relationship as friends just because I learned something that they didn't know or agreed with??? What did that have to do with me as a person???
In closing, please understand, what God reveals to you, is for YOU! I made the mistake of trying to take others along with me to the next level in MY development. It doesn’t work that way! Realize that if you choose to learn more, you may very well lose some of your closest friends. You will want to take them to the next level with you, but realize that God is taking YOU there...not y'all there.
I pray that this testimony is helpful to some brother or sister who is making their transition to Afrikan consciousness. Stay strong, Brothers and Sisters, and always know that the Creator and the Ancestors are with you!
Brother Ray (a.k.a. “Sa Ra”)