How I Came to Christ (and what ALL Christians can learn from my story!)
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You may not know this about me… I haven’t always been a Christian! In fact, I’m relatively new to this whole Christianity thing. This is the story of how Jesus introduced himself to me at the scariest moment of my life. My hope is that the story of how I came to Christ will give you some insights into helping people draw nearer to God and into a life of authentic faith!
I grew up in a pretty secular family.
As a little girl, my family didn’t go to church. Though we had a few years going to a Unitarian Universalist church, nothing really stuck! I didn’t learn until my later teens that my mom’s family had been religious, but life got in the way. I was raised with a love of science and disdain for belief in anything that couldn’t be measured. At some point, I even picked up the belief that all Christians were uneducated, indoctrinated hicks! Of course, I believed that I already knew all the answers, as most teenagers do.
My husband was raised somewhat Catholic, with a belief in God but not going to church regularly. We got married young and didn’t have much trouble joining our lives together. Then we found out – we were expecting!
When I was pregnant, my husband introduced Christianity to me.
Keith started reading his Bible more often as I got bigger. He dreamed of raising our child in a Christian home. When he posed that question to me, I was shocked! I pushed back hard, but he kept asking. Unfortunately, my heart hardened towards him and the idea of ever stepping foot in a church. If someone told me that in a few short months, I would have already came to Christ, I would have laughed in their face!
Everything changed on the operating table.
At 36 weeks, I learned Emma was breech and that I would need a C-section. It would be my first major surgery, there was going to be a needle involved, and I was going to be a mom at the end of it! I was terrified.
On the morning we went to the hospital, I was hoping that she had flipped and that I could go home… But instead, the nurse told me I was in the first stages of labor! She said, “This baby’s coming today, one way or another.” Oh, and Emma was still facing the wrong way. Right about then was when the panic attack started! Then I got to meet the lovely people who would be doing my surgery – three young women who were just started their residency, under the supervision of my regular obstetrician.
It was time to head to the operating room, but Keith wasn’t there yet. And I saw that giant needle, and started crying! I asked if they could wait to do the spinal until he was ready and in the room with me. But the nurse just laughed and told me that too many husbands pass out! Now, if you’d imagine a nine months pregnant woman sobbing and trying to run out of an operating room, being held back by a much smaller nurse… That was me!
Then things got real.
Mercifully, the anesthesiologist put a little extra morphine in my spinal, but things didn’t get better. It must have been the resident’s first C-section, because from across the blue curtain I could hear her saying that she was nervous and she couldn’t do it! I threw up at the nurse anesthetist, who thankfully was ready with a bucket. When Keith finally came in, he casually mentioned that there was a huge bucket of my blood right on the other side of the curtain!
Our plan was that he would stay with me while they got Emma cleaned up and stitched me back together… But of course, that didn’t happen! As soon as he heard her sweet cry, he followed her out of the room and I was left by myself. Unfortunately, I didn’t get a chance to see her because I didn’t have my glasses on!
I was alone, scared, and nauseous, and they kept saying, “Blood pressure dropping! Blood pressure dropping!” along with the little confidence of the resident who was in charge of putting me together again! Oh, and no one told me if baby Emma was healthy! At that moment, I was so scared, and I had no control over what happened: my baby’s health, when I would see her, my own health…
So I gave it up.
I knew in that moment that I needed a love and a power greater than mine to rule my life. I knew that this was only the first of many times I would worry for my daughter when I had no control. Finally, I was ready to accept that I needed a Lord – someone to pray to, who loved us, who could do more than I ever could, and who would more than make up for my shortcomings.
Immediately, I felt an unknown peace wash over me (that I would later learn is called “peace beyond understanding”). And I felt sure that God had his hand on Keith and Emma. Most importantly, I felt a huge shift inside me – from carrying my baby’s future by myself, to giving it up to God. I placed myself and my family at the feet of Jesus in that moment. And I haven’t looked back since the moment I came to Christ.
What You Can Learn from My Story
It’s been four years since I came to Christ. As someone who didn’t grow up around the Bible, I’ve had a lot of catching up to do! In that time, I’ve been blessed to have a great mentor, who helped me see that teaching and leading others is something I’m called to do, despite my inexperience. I’ve been lucky enough to lead a group of women in Bible study and learn so much from them. I think that my experience of how I came to Christ has affected how I see God and faith. And I think that it may change how you, dear Christian, think about sharing your faith with others. My hope is that you might see bringing others to Jesus from a different perspective.
God is the one who converts people – not you.
Thankfully, I haven’t come across this belief too much in my short faith journey. But you know what I’m talking about – if I just share one more Bible verse, have one more lunch at Chick-fil-A, or invite them to church one more time… The truth is, you are doing God’s work by sharing the gospel. But no matter what that person decides, it’s not your failure or your accomplishment.
Hearts soften at their own pace.
On a related note, please don’t lose hope if the person you’re sharing the gospel with takes months, years, or decades to come around! There’s no prescription, or guaranteed way to convince someone that Jesus lives. Their heart needs to go through its own process, and that’s different for everyone.
Pushing, shaming, and ‘convicting’ aren’t the answer.
Do you think I came to Christ because someone convinced me I need saving? Absolutely not! In fact, the harder Keith pushed, the harder I pushed back! Show people what Jesus has done in your life and the lives of people you know. Be an example of God’s light in the world. Offer prayer, healing, and unconditional love. Be patient, humble, loving, and authentic about what your walk has looked like. These are the people who have guided me into a deep faith and helped me see who God made me to be!
So tell me, how did you become a Christian? Tell me your story in the comments!
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