I was just reading an article titled “How do I know the Bible is True.” Basically, the writer’s child had asked her a few tough questions concerning the Bible and her faith. The writer then goes on to explain how we as Christian’s can deal with this situation when it arises. It lead me to think of the time in my life when I realized that what I believed was more than something written in a book. Yes, there was a moment when I discerned for myself that I didn’t believe in Jesus Christ simply because it was something my parents “taught me.”
Often times Christian’s are labeled based on the denomination of the church they attend. However, a preacher at a church I attended said it best; “Just call me a Christian.” he said. I feel the same. Christians do not have “rituals.” We do not pray towards a certain direction, although I hope my prayers always go straight up, lol. In fact, we can pray at any time during the day because we know that God has not designated a specific time for prayer. He does not have to pencil us in. We have something that is so special with our God that it sets Christianity apart from all other religions. We have an actual RELATIONSHIP with the God we serve; much like a father and child.
So getting back to the moment when I realized God was not a spaghetti monster in the sky. As a child, I attended a Baptist church. During the services, the preacher would ask if anyone had prayer requests. Now, this was not the type of church where one would just sit in their seat and pray quietly. The person being prayed for would come to the front of the church and a group of elders would lay hands on that person and pray. So in this case, the person happened to be a girl named Casey. She was a few years older than me. Casey’s hearing had went out in one of her ears. I watched as people laid hands on Casey and in unison, prayed for her. After they finished, one of the men who had prayed leaned down and started whispering in the ear that was afflicted. I saw her shaking her head yes. “She can hear!” he said. Unbelievable! I thought to myself.
So many people can look at that incident and say “Well, she could have faked it.” They are right. She very well could have. However, that was only one incident in which I saw the power of God work for someone else. I haven’t yet explained how his power has worked in my own life. There was a time in my life when I felt very far from God. My husband had joined the military and I had become extremely depressed due to us being deployed far away from our home state and family. We did not start off well financially. I guess I expected that military life would help alleviate our financial burdens. However, in the beginning of our marriage, we didn’t pay attention to details . So it got to the point that our bank account was constantly being overdrawn. We didn’t realize there were so many hidden fees involved with having an account. So here we are with a fat little toddler baby, scraping by to make it. My husband was being sent to Florida for a training. I remember the discussion we had before him leaving. He was supposed to bring money for food, however, if he took the money than myself and our daughter would go without. I remember him saying that he wouldn’t eat. I had so much anxiety in the pit of my stomach. I didn’t want my husband to not eat. So he left for the trip and I just spent a lot of time crying. I didn’t know what to do. There was hardly any money in the bank account. I decided to watch a little television. I don’t know what drew me to the 700 Club. I always thought of that show as something my grandmother would watch. It had never been my cup of tea. However, there I sat, watching intently. There is a portion of the show where the speakers just pray for people. I remember breaking down and just praying along with them. I was so desperate. There was nothing left for me to do, so what could a prayer hurt? Well, it didn’t hurt me any. In fact, it was EXACTLY what I needed to do.I was completely broken. At that point in my life, I wasn’t sure if God heard my prayers, but I was going to give it a shot anyway.
I can’t remember if it was the same day, or the next, but at some point I felt compelled to check my bank account. I often checked my balance by phone. So I called to check it and there was money! I had no clue where it had come from. To this day, I don’t know. At that point, I don’t even think I cared where it came from because this meant we were ok. My husband called from Florida to check in and I remember telling him “You can eat. We have money.” I was so happy. I still get tears in my eyes just thinking back to that moment because I knew it was God. Before the prayer, nothing! After the prayer, something! Not only that, but Nick and I received help after that with organizing our bills. We were put in touch with a financial counselor and everything just started to fall into place. Why God? We didn’t deserve it. The truth is, none of us deserve it. Once you realize that you don’t deserve God’s grace, that is when you receive it. James 4:6 says
“But he gives more grace. Therefore it says, “God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble.”
So that was a moment in which God worked in my life. That is only one of many. However, that was a very defining moment, because it was the first moment in my adult life where I really recognized that the same God that had healed the little girls hearing at my church, could heal my broken spirit. It was the first moment in my adult life where I knew he heard my prayers. How many people can say that they prayed and something happened because of it? I can.
So for me, it’s not hard to answer the questions about why I believe in God. Or why I am a Christian rather than any other “religion” in the world. I have seen numerous times the question posed “How do you know your religion is the right one?” I know because I see results. It’s not because I have been brainwashed into believing something that my parents before me believed as most insinuate. It’s not because I’m delusional and just haven’t been open to what others believe. It’s because God himself reached down into the trenches and pulled me out. Not because of my love for him, but because of his love for me. I am a daughter of the King of the most high! I am not perfect and never will be. However, he loves me anyway.
My children will ask the tough questions. I don’t want my children to be a part of a “religion.” I don’t want them believing something just because I believe it. God doesn’t want that either. He wants my children to have the same experience I had. He wants to show his love and mercy for them. So parent’s, do not worry about questions your children may ask. Have faith. At some point in your life, God showed up when you needed him. Unless your children are a different species, they will most likely have troublesome times in their lives as well. There will come a time when they need something more than what you can give them. There is where they will find God.
“Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.” Matthew 7:7