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Misguided Mantra - Hare Krishna Devotee Finds Christ



Jagat - Sat, 24 Apr 2004 18:36:39 +0530

This was posted some time back on Audarya Fellowship. I thought that there is sufficient material here that could induce valuable commentary, so I am cross posting it.


MISGUIDED MANTRA

Hare Krishna Devotee Finds Christ

By Michelle Wilson (The 700 Club)

Rick McReynolds was deep into the Eastern religion when a former Hare Krishna spoke truth to him at a Christian concert.

"I wasnít sure there was a God, so it was basically just living for the day and just trying to stay high and having fun," says Rick McReyolds.

Thatís exactly the life that Rick led. After high school and a stint in the Air Force, Rick joined up with childhood friends to start a rock band. They named the band Time Machine.

"We were into drugs pretty heavily, mostly pot and speed and acid," says Rick. "We didnít want to grow up."

Then the drummer of the band introduced Time Machine to a different kind of "high" Ė Hare Krishna.

"Someone gave him the book, the Bhagavad-Gita, and he was reading from the book what it would be like to be 'Krishna conscious,' " Rick says.

This new religion taught that the gods of other religions Ė including Jesus Christ Ė were merely manifestations of the creator of the world, Krishna.

Who exactly is Krishna?

As Rick explains, "Heís 13 years old, heís got blue skin, and heís really into peacocks. Thatís God. Thatís Krishna."

Rick and the band fully embraced this transcendental Eastern religion. They even stopped doing drugs in order to go beyond the material world and become more Krishna conscious.

"Youíre supposed to chant [the Hare Krishna mantra] all the time, which is really like a drug," says Rick.

They chanted the mantra every waking moment, studied the philosophies of Krishna, and practiced their music. If they had any doubts about their newfound religion, Beatle George Harrisonís conversion to Hare Krishna was the example they followed.

"When he became Krishna conscious and that album come up, boy, I mean, we had that album," says Rick. "It really confirmed that, yeah, this is the truth and the fact that you could have that as part of your music."

And so they began to write and perform songs about Krishna. They gave out books explaining Hare Krishna and food that had been offered to the idol. Rick was now deeply involved in reaching Krishna consciousness. There was no turning back.

"I really wasnít looking for something else. I thought I had found it," he says. "My whole dream was that our band, the Time Machine, and my best friends, that we would just go on a national tour for Krishna."

It was at this time that an old friend invited Rick to a Christian concert. One of the bandís members was a woman who had left Krishna to follow Jesus Christ.

"I went out of curiosity," says Rick. "It wasnít because of some search that I was on, but it just didnít make sense to me."

For the first time, Rick heard the salvation message of Jesus Christ. After the concert, he wanted to meet this woman who used to be Krishna conscious.

"As she walked up to me, I said, 'Hare Krishna.' And she goes, 'Oh, youíre a Krishna devotee.' And I said, 'Yes,' and told her my name. She said, 'Well, Rick, I donít mean to offend you or hurt you, but that Krishna that youíre worshipping is the adversary; itís the devil.' It was like a slap in the face."

Then the woman began to share with Rick her testimony of how God saved her from the deception and darkness of Hare Krishna.

"She said, 'Rick, I want to pray for you that Jesus will open your eyes and show you the truth.' I said, 'OK.' And so she prayed, 'Jesus, open Rickís eyes and show him the truth.' I said, 'Jesus, come into my heart and fill me with Your love.' I was all by myself. As soon as I said that, I knew I did something right. I knew that it was the truth. I knew in my know-er that He is who He said He was. As soon as I prayed that prayer, it was just total peace and everything was going to be OK. I started singing, 'Jesus, come into my heart.' I had a little melody, 'Fill me with Your love. Fill me with Your love.'"

And as simply as that, Rick says that Jesus Christ came into his heart. But turning from Krishna meant turning away from the band and his friends.

I said, 'Iíve got to follow my heart. I know what I did is right,' Rick recalls.

Rick began going to Bible study and devouring the Scriptures. Thatís when he met a woman named Beth.

"We started singing together," he says.

They married and started living their lives totally for Jesus. Rick also led Time Machineís drummer, the bass player, and their families to Jesus Christ.

"Thereís one God, one medium between God and man, the man Christ Jesus," says Rick. "You donít pray that to think youíll be heard for your many words. Thereís no forgiveness of sin without the shedding of blood. Itís not saying some mantra."

Rick and the band members put the false religion of Hare Krishna behind them. Because of their new relationship with Jesus, they formed a new band, Grace.

"Thatís really where itís at. Itís Godís Riches At Christís Expense, the acronym of Grace," he explains.

The band Grace stayed together for four years and recorded four albums. Eventually, Rick and Beth started a church.

Today Rick and Beth are back on the road again speaking and singing about the life changing truth of Jesus Christ.

"Jesus said, 'I am the way, the truth, and the life.' Truth isnít some subjective thing. Truth is a person. Itís Jesus," says Rick.

Discussion.