I can’t point to an exact time when I became a Christian. Instead I see my faith in God as a gradual growth in a relationship with Him.
As I grew up I often heard the question “Are you a Christian?” I remember being asked it when I was about 12 or 13 at a camp I went on. I knew what Christianity was all about having been brought up by Christian parents and going to church. I took a good look at myself. On the surface I could seem like a ‘nice, good’ guy but inside I knew there was a lot of muck (sin) that needed attention.
I felt challenged by the thought that I didn’t know Jesus personally; the thought that, as the Bible says, if I didn’t accept Him as number 1 in my life then I wouldn’t be forgiven and I wouldn’t have “life in all its fullness”. I think I was searching for meaning in life and purpose at that time. This was a hole I couldn’t fill myself.
No success, popularity, status or material thing seemed to fully satisfy. So I did the best thing I’ve ever done! I made a commitment to give my life to Jesus. I do recall praying in my bedroom that He would forgive me and enter my life. I realised that Jesus was the only one who could give me true peace and joy. He could make me right with God. I can’t make myself a better person through my own effort. Sure, I can do good things and help people out and so on but I never felt or feel satisfied when I do it for myself; it just feels empty.
Obviously there have been times when my faith has been tested. I have doubted and asked “Is this actually real? Or is it just fantasy? Did Jesus really die for everyone; including ME?? What are the consequences?” I like to examine the “evidence”.
On a personal level, I love sport and music and aim for success in those things; but regardless of what I have or do achieve, it still feels temporary. My life only becomes meaningful when I can say I’m living it for God. I also enjoy science. My understanding of the world and how/ why it works only truly makes sense to me when I fix my eyes on Jesus. I see Him as my Creator and I have learned that He loves every one of us so much more than any human person ever could; why wouldn’t I want this?! God has answered prayer on numerous occasions in my life too. I read the Bible and look at His promises, (which are immense!) and look at how many times I have actually experienced something of His presence. There is completeness in knowing I have a loving, caring and thoughtful God who I can have a living relationship with each day.