DRAWN BY HIS LOVING PRESENCE
For a while now, I have been thinking that I want to share the story of my salvation. It is different from so many testimonies that I have heard.
I grew up in a tradition that baptizes infants. The belief is, the baby is reborn at that point. While I have come to disagree with this, I do think God does something when a little one is presented to him.
The point of my conversion happened when I was four: I was playing in my yard when I had an encounter with Jesus. I knew him: He felt so familiar and loving; his voice was immediately recognizable. He asked me if I wanted him to live in my heart. I said, “Yes!”
I had an insatiable hunger for Scripture. As soon as I could read well enough, I devoured it. I loved to worship, spent plenty of private time with the Lord and eagerly attended Church. I said from very young that I wanted to be a pastor, even though my tradition did not ordain women at that time.
Oh, I still learned plenty of lies about who God is and what sort of person I am; God had to heal me from trauma and dysfunction: Christians are not exempt from the things of life in this fallen world.
The thing that makes my story unique is, I didn’t have to “get to rock botttom” in order to discover my need for God. Instead, I came to him as a result of his loving presence.
Actually, I am not at all convinced that people “have to get to rock bottom” before they come to Jesus; in fact, I consider that to be a lie. We have been created with the power and freedom to choose. WE can turn around and go in a new direction, any time we decide to. My biggest objection to this “truism” is that it makes hardship into an idol. Jesus saves, not tragedy, devistation or deprivation. We can respond to his loving call, even when life is going very well.
When and how do you hear God? How does he express his love and affection to you?