I just assumed I was going to Heaven. I was a pretty good person. I also never missed church or Sunday school. When I was a kid, I read a children’s Bible several times and eventually moved on to the real Bible. I read through that several times too. I also prayed a lot.
When I was in high school, I was reading a Christian book series. One of the characters thought similar to me. Another guy told her she had to accept the forgiveness given to her through the death of Jesus Christ the Son of God and surrender her life to Christ. This was new to me but I knew that I could deal with it. Right after I read that chapter, I decided I was going to surrender my life. And that was that.
If anyone asked me, I would have told them that I was a Christian. Deep down, and I didn’t like to acknowledge this, but I knew I wasn’t a Christian.
I really didn’t have time for God. School was really important to me and I spent a lot of time studying. I knew college was going to be even worse. I figured I would have more time for God once I graduated from college.
In the meantime, I became aware that God was working in my life. Every night I would pray that God would keep my family safe. I always prayed that kind of as a precaution. God was answering my prayers though. God had saved my brother in a terrible tornado.
I still didn’t have time for God but I was aware of Him working in my life. I was getting ready to head off to college but I decided I was going to find a really good church when I was there. Maybe that would help my relationship with God once I had more time.
Before I could leave for college, my grandma died in a car accident. I had never lost anyone that I was close to and it was a difficult time for me. It also really got me thinking.
Suddenly, death was very real to me. It could happen at any time. To make it even more real, I read Left Behind. The book talked about Jesus coming back and taking away his followers. Many were left behind; including those who claimed to be Christians but hadn’t given God much thought. My future was very uncertain. I didn’t know where I would go after I died.
I welcomed Christ into my life a few months later. I had originally thought that I wouldn’t have time for God in college but I did. I got involved at an amazing church that also offered a youth group for college students. I also got involved in some Christian groups on campus.
A few months after accepting Christ, I was presented with something new: Baptism. I was baptized as a baby and thought nothing of it. The church I was attending while I was away at school promoted people being baptized when they are older. The pastor said that baptism is a choice that only you can make, not parents. Jesus made the decision himself to be baptized. He also said that we needed to be baptized like Jesus. Jesus was completely immersed under water, not just sprinkled with a few drops.
I thought a lot about baptism after that. It was something I just couldn’t jump into. God was telling me before I could be baptized, I needed to tell my parents. I knew my mom wouldn’t approve. She wasn’t thrilled that I was going to a nondenominational church but she let it go because this was a church that had a lot of college students attend as well as had a lot to offer them.
I decided that even though I was ready to be baptized, I would just wait until after I finished school. God didn’t want me to wait though. He wouldn’t let me forget about it. I was losing sleep. I finally got up the courage and talked to my mom. I was baptized three days later even though she really didn’t approve.
My baptism was the best day of my life. I wished my family could have shared my special day with me but the important thing is that my sins are forgiven and I am living my life for God.
After becoming a Christian, I decided to use my gifts for God. I love to write so I became a Christian writer. In all my fiction writing, I always bring God into it.
One challenge I had after becoming a Christian was depression. I didn’t know how to fit depression into my Christian life. After listening to a speaker talk about everyone being broken from events in our life, God showed me how I could use my depression for Him. I was to incorporate depression into my writing. Through my writing, I was to explain depression as well as give glory to God.
I am not saying that the Christian journey has always been easy, but at least I now have God at my side, helping me through it all. And someday, I will be able to spend eternity with God in Heaven!