Next up in my “Why are you a Christian?” series is my wonderful mum! Such a wonderful lady, to whom I owe so much and who inspires me greatly. Her name is Jo, she and my Dad will have been married 30 years in a few months (wow!) and she works for a school dealing with all things finance.
This is her answer to my question, “Why are you a Christian?”
In a typical British upbringing, I was taught about God at school and Sunday school. And I always wanted to believe it. Looking back, I think there was a “God shaped hole” in the very centre of me.
But it was hard: in a cynical family, faith was often ridiculed, irrelevant, for the weak. So I put it to one side.
I moved schools when I was 12 and wanted to fit in with the new crowd. They said if I went to the Christian group on a Tuesday lunchtime, I could get a pass to get lunch without queuing up. It seemed like a good deal especially as once you had the pass, you didn’t have to go again! But I did go, all year, and each year after that, because I enjoyed it. There was something about these people.
Roll on a few years and I went along to some sort of rally. I have no idea what it was, but I went along with my friends from the Christian group anyway. I was really stuck by a young guy who stood up and gave his testimony. I have no idea what he said, and he was shaking like mad. And it struck me that he thought it was important enough to stand there, terrified, because he had something important to say.
Later that evening, in amongst all the singing and stuff, I knew I really wanted to believe. But it was all stupid. It made no sense at all. Miracles, an invisible God, impossibilities, all rubbish! But I still wanted to know. So I prayed, one of those stupid prayers that we can pray… “If you are real, tell me how you did just one of those miracles.”
Like a good magician, he didn’t tell me the secret of how he did it. But instead he did reveal something of Himself. His power. His might. His very being. And I knew. And I believed.
And I still believe.
I believe in a God who I know can put all the animals in an ark.
I believe in a God who I know can put Jonah in the whale, and get him out again, alive.
I believe in a God who I know can turn water into wine.
I believe in a God who I know can make the blind see.
There is so much I don’t know, that I get wrong, that I struggle with. But the only way the picture makes any sense is with God in it.
So I continue to believe.
“ Yet I am not ashamed, because I know whom I have believed, and am convinced that he is able to guard what I have entrusted to him for that day.” (2 Timothy 1:12)
… and that’s enough for me.
Thank you for writing, mum! And thank you for introducing me to that same God who can do all those things when I was little. It has changed my life. I’ve now had 7 answers to this question, and they can all be found here.