Account of David Lackey
I was born on the 21st of September 1975 in Lambeth, London. My religion before I accepted Islam Ahmadiyyat was Christianity. I converted in March 2010. At the moment I am the Sports Secretary of the Tahir Region (Khuddam Region in London).
I come from a normal working class family. My father used to work for a Gas Company but is now retired and my mother used to work for a food company as a saleswoman. I have a sister who is a mother of five wonderful children and is a teaching assistant and works in a primary school.
My education wasn’t excellent, in my opinion I went to a poor school in a socially deprived area. I didn’t really do well in school either, resulting in my grades being poor and when I went to college, I didn’t finish any of the courses that I chose, which were all revolving around the construction trade.
My lifestyle growing up was kind of rough, as I grew up around the Brixton area of London, where the outlook is glum for all the young people. I loved football, which really kept me going. When I was nine years old I started to play football and went on to play for the under 11 Wimbledon FC team, then under 12’s and under 15’s also. After which I went on to play for Gillingham FC and Crystal Palace teams. Then I turned into a semi-pro football player and played for Horsham FC and then county football, whilst also playing football with my friends on Sundays. I was also a Drum and Bass DJ. But now I work as a premises Manager.
What led to me to Islam Ahmadiyyat was that I had recently gone through a divorce. My outlook on life at the time was bleak. I was just at a very low point in my life and I felt that there was nothing for me anymore; naturally being in such a state after marriage. This was when I thought that there must be something more to life and I started my search for God, which I hoped would help me move forward in life.
I used to attend some Kung Fu Classes where I had a friend who introduced me to Ahmadiyyat. This is when I started to look into Ahmadiyyat and started my own research. I consider myself to be an open-minded person who always tries to look at the bigger picture. During my research everything just made sense to me and it all felt pure and true.
My perception before I converted to Islam Ahmadiyyat was not good at all. Especially with what we see on the television. I thought that Islam was full of people who were told to go out and kill and this always disturbed me, because I thought that how can God tell His own creation to kill His own creation, just so that they believe in Him?
My family’s reaction towards my conversion to Islam Ahmadiyyat in the beginning was that they told me to rethink it carefully. My parents have always supported me in whatever decision I take, but this one, they weren’t very sure about. As time has progressed and they have seen and felt a difference for the better in me, they have accepted it. Every now and then I tell them about Islam and it’s beauties, but I don’t think they are considering converting yet.
One of the challenges I faced was that during our family gatherings, we would always drink alcohol, especially my uncles. But when I told them that I didn’t drink alcohol anymore, they found that hard. As time has progressed, they have become very understanding about me not drinking and now it has become easier for me too.
Accepting Islam Ahmadiyyat has changed me in many ways. Some of them are that I have become a much calmer person and feel more satisfied with myself. I feel lucky to be where I am right now and I am more grateful for what I have, which I thank God for. God has blessed me with so many brothers, who are very dear friends to me, whom I truly love and enjoy being around.
Spiritually Islam has also bought a change in me, which is that I am very happy and at peace with myself. Before my conversion I used to be very materialistic and would always desire worldly things, but after my conversion I feel that none of that matters anymore as long as we have God; which is the only thing that matters because it is the afterlife we are working for, not this one. So if God is happy with us, then our afterlife would be a rich one.
In my day to day life I try to be guided by the Holy Quran and follow whatever our beloved Khalifa, may Allah be his Helper, tells us to do, because I know for a fact, whatever we are told to do by him, is what the Quran or the Holy Prophet, peace and blessing of Allah be upon him, has instructed us to do as well. So I try to follow these instructions to the best of my ability.