I’d like to take just a moment and share with you a little bit about my story, that is, how I became a Christian. I didn’t grow up in a Christian home, though I had two loving parents. I didn’t grow up going to church on any sort of a regular basis, perhaps a little bit when I was quite young, but not after that.
It wasn’t until I went to University in 1982 that I met some Christians and for the first time I heard the gospel (The Good News that we have been talking about). But, I’m going to be honest with you, I did not respond well. I was not the least bit interested. I was studying biochemistry and for me, basically, the Christian faith didn’t add up scientifically and for that reason, I rejected it outright. I had several disputes and arguments, mostly friendly, with my Christian friends, but I certainly was not interested in turning from my sin and accepting Christ as my savior.
Becoming a Christian
Becoming a Christian wasn’t on the agenda for me. But, in my second semester, I heard the gospel – God’s story – a couple more times and things began to change in my heart. After my first year in university was over, I stayed in the city where I was studying for the summer. One night around 1:00 am, I was walking back to my apartment. During the 2 mile walk, I began to think about Jesus. Some of the things that I had heard one of my Christian friends share earlier in the year came to my mind. I started to feel a sense of sorrow for my sin, for the things I had done that I knew were wrong. I started to sense that they were wrong and I wanted forgiveness for those things. I wanted a clean conscience and so I turned my heart to Christ and trusted Him as my savior. For me personally, it can be different for different people, I experienced God’s immediate peace and joy in my life; my heart was transformed. I wanted to follow Christ from that point onward.
I remember a few weeks later, while I was sitting late at night in a McDonald’s in Halifax Nova Scotia, that I really wanted to understand more about what happened to me on that walk home. Well, I had been given a little bible by one of my Christian friends from university, and so I began to read it. I started to go through Romans – a letter in the New Testament – and eventually came to chapter 5 and verse 5. In this verse, Paul says that God has poured out His love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit He has given us. That was it! The joy and love I was experiencing – God’s joy and love – was from the Holy Spirit who now lived in my heart.
That’s the one thing I could never understand about the Christians I knew in university. HOw were they always so joyful and calm about things? At least they had more joy than I knew and more peace than I had ever experienced. The peace I knew was, for the most part circumstantial and fragmentary, sporadic, and easily disquieted.
So I accepted Christ in May of 1983 and I experienced God’s joy and peace. Peace flowing from God’s forgiveness and being reconciled to Him. I experienced the peace that comes from knowing that my sins were forgiven and that God has completely accepted me in Christ. He transformed my life and as I began to read scripture for the first time in my life, I was beginning to understand this new relationship with God.
So, that’s a little bit about how I became a Christian. I didn’t grow up in a Christian home. I didn’t go to church, but when I heard the gospel it took about nine months to think about it and eventually give my life to Christ. I want to encourage you – that no matter where you’re at, whether you’re into science or philosophy like I was, or not – God loves you. Consider Christ, who through His death, resurrection, and present reign now summons you and me to genuine repentance and faith in Him.