I’m a scientist. I ask questions, look at evidence and make decisions about what I believe to be the truth. At the age of about 10 I decided God didn’t exist. After all what evidence had I? What proof? That’s how much of a scientist I am.
Jumping a head a few years, through the torment of puberty, confusion of girls, alcohol, school, exams and all that usual teen-age stuff. Then we arrive at University. I remember a friend of mine saying she’d been caught between these two girls, Lindsay and Fiona, who’d been telling each other about when they’d become Christians – I sympathised with her, realising how awful it must have been to be trapped between these two total fruitcakes and knowing I should avoid such people. So after about a week Fiona and I were going out with each other!
We talked, about alot of things, Shakespeare, Mathematics, Life, Fudge Doughnuts,…, God. I knew all about God, God was the answer to all the hard questions, God was a cop-out so you didn’t have to think about the real answers in the REAL world. But I saw Fiona and her Christian friends they all seemed so happy so alive, like they had something, something extra that other people didn’t. (They do.)
Are all these people fools? Did so many die for their faith at the hands of the Roman Empire (and sins) on the off chance that what they believed was true?
In my first year I was in Andrew Melville Hall. In my room was a Bible. That was about all. When I arrived I opened it, just to take a glance I suppose, I closed it again. Looked at the cover and opened it again. They’d put the cover on upside down. This made me look a little closer, briefly. Over the next few months I began to look at the Bible, I wanted to find out what it was these people believed in. One particular verse struck me, (Luke 11:9&10).
9 “So I say to you: Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. 10 For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds; and to him who knocks, the door will be opened.”
Many nights I walked home by myself. Time to think. One night I was walking back (19/1/95) to my room at Melville from Chattan. It was pretty late and no-one was around. I’d got pretty worked up about all this God stuff, the questions just wouldn’t go away, I’d thought about it often before but this time it was different,….I prayed.
As I walked along the road past the A.U. to Melville I called out:
“God, if you’re really out there show me, just show me…”
the stormy clouds failed to release their bolt of lightning on the tree on which I was focusing. Yet this didn’t seem to deter me somehow. I went to bed and for the moment forgot about what I had just done. Until Sunday: In the evening I was at Chattan, Fiona was about to leave for church, I was about to go back to Melville and get my tea. But something got into me, I didn’t know what or why, I said “I’ll come with you to church”, Fiona says “don’t feel you have to” I say “No, no, I just feel like I should be going, if we can sit at the back or something…”….I didn’t want anyone to see me there.
We went to the Baptist Church, late, the only seats were far too obvious. But I didn’t care. Everyone was singing as we walked in and a feeling of an incredible presence filled the room. I’d never heard such singing. I was awe struck.
Then as we sat, my hands began to move, by themselves, as I watched. It was as if my hands were gloves and I could feel someone else inside moving them, I tried to fight it but the force was too strong I had to give in. They were stretched out and moved, turned, moved, placed together. Then I was lifted up by them to stand on my feet and my arms were stretched wide by some amazing force, I felt myself being pulled in two the pain across my chest, it hurt, it hurt more than anything I’d ever felt. Then I “saw” Jesus (I don’t know if my eyes were open or shut). The world wasn’t there anymore, only God’s Son before me on the cross and I realised He was there for me and that what I was feeling was a minute part of the pain he had suffered. And I said “Jesus, forgive me” and instantly the pain was gone and I broke down. I cried! I thanked God that He had died so that I might be forgiven.
By this time people had realised something a bit extraordinary was happening and I was ushered out of the room to sit on the stairs, sobbing, shaking, confused, overjoyed, born again!
The people were concerned about me I said “I know what you’re thinking; that I am possessed by an evil spirit”. One woman thought that I might even be on drugs or something. I spent the night praising God and trying to work out what had happened. I prayed again thanking God for what He had done.
The next week was one of the hardest of my life. I completely ignored the exams. My whole world had crumbled to the ground. I spent the week trying to work out what I actually believed about everything, trying to account for what had happened, to rationalise it away, to explain it by Freudian theory or Physics, even imagining I had a brain tumour or something. Like Descartes I cut away everything to find what I actually knew and found God.
He had answered my prayer.
Not only that, he answered it in the way necessary for me. I know that Jesus died for me on the cross at Calvary to be an atoning sacrifice for my sins, for all of our sins, to allow us to come into God’s presence and be forgiven. I know the Holy Spirit dwells amongst us and has power, real power, even physical power to witness to the Glory of God. I know that when we pray to God The Father he hears our prayers and answers them – not in the way we think is right ( like lightning bolts) but in ways far more awesome far more amazing, in the way he knows is right.
God met me where I was, he gave me the proof that my scientific mind needed. He gave me life.
Some people get on with things, some need a word of encouragement or a little nudge. Others need a good kick up the arse. Like me! Nothing more real has ever happened to me, but I needed it. When did I become a Christian, it may seem obvious, but I believe now hat it was the moment I prayed to God with all my heart, that moment I leapt into the abyss and put my trust in those words I’d read in my upside down Bible. He caught me and now he will not let go.
Did I get “all the answers”? No. But I don’t need them, I know, through experience that God has me in His arms of love, He continues to answer my prayers, continues to forgive me from my sins, continues to love me. Now I don’t have to have those answers ’cause I have had the true answer to the one important question.
If you’re sat out there listening and your thinking about God, he has this promise for you (2 Chronicles 12):
“You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.”
I truly believe that if you pray with all your heart and truly believe, God will answer. Maybe not straight away, maybe not in the way you expect. Reading now from the book of Revelations, the words of Jesus Christ, The Son of God (Rev 3:14-22?)
19 “Those whom I love I rebuke and discipline. So be earnest and repent. 20 Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door I will come in and eat with him, and he with me.”
All content above here is as originally presented on this website which is my testimony as prepared for a presentation at a meeting of St.Andrews University Christian Union (SAUCU) back in 1997. I used to say “everything above here”, but when updating for I had to remove some <p> tags. All the stuff below this is newer than that and might even be up to date … but I doubt it :o)>
(This is a copy of my testimony about how I became a Christian as presented at CU last year (1997?), hence when I say 28 months, it’s now been 37 (or whatever – 119 at last count!), other errors due to the date of presentaion of this testimony may be apparent.)
I reccommend visiting a local church if you have more questions, if you don’t know where to go to I may be able to help: If you live in a town a good way is to find a large church building, visit on a Sunday and ask (at the end) one of those who speaks from the front to recommend churchs in the area. If they can’t give you a list of at least half-a-dozen churchs then steer clear. I’ll put in Bible quotes to support this later, but, any church worth going to should, during the service …
They will normally …
They shouldn’t …
If you’re in St.Andrews (a bit of a long shot, I know) You could also try the Christian Union pages, they should have contact addresses.