I am from an atheist background; I had a previous slight interest in Christianity in my teenage years as I had a very cursory read of the New Testament. I dismissed Christianity as I believed it would not withstand my line of questioning or answer my inner most struggles (I realize now this was my refusal to look). I focused instead on other things which lead me to have a lot of mental health problems and other struggles. I have been doing okay for the last few years but had felt like something significant was missing in my life. I was academically successful, had a great job, hobbies, a partner but now at 32 years old, I couldn’t shake the feeling that I wasn’t living life the way I was meant to.

In April 2021, I had a direct experience of God. Please forgive my clumsy words explaining this, writing this experience down is confronting, the presence of God is such a difficult thing to describe but He has called me to share this. I had gone to my partner’s brother’s confirmation at his regular Church. Sitting in Church as a non-believer was really uncomfortable and I honestly just wanted to run out of there. Nobody specifically made me uncomfortable, I sat and listened to the sermon patiently but made my getaway as soon as I could. I wondered afterwards why I had been so uncomfortable. Surely if I don’t believe, then it shouldn’t have been a problem to just enjoy and appreciate what was a special day for my partner’s family? That bothered me a lot so I felt drawn to read and listen to videos and debates that were more philosophical in nature, as I originally thought that this discomfort was something like death anxiety (since any time I had been in a Church before was for someone’s funeral and we are in the middle of a pandemic). A few days pass and then I had a very difficult week. I had found out my Dad had skin cancer, I was overloaded with work and felt a lot of stress in my life. I was not happy at all and was struggling immensely with my concentration and focus, made worse by the repeated lockdowns. On that day, I was listening to some YouTube videos as I worked, as I normally did. I usually left it playing through different discussions on a themed playlist. That day I listened to a discussion of describing Jesus as the Logos, the Truth, the Word made flesh. “The Word made flesh?” I thought, I immediately ran a google search for that Scripture. I found John 1:1-5. As I read it, in that moment, I felt as if those words were speaking directly to me. I realized that I was feeling the presence of God. I felt so overwhelmed, feeling the ‘’realness’’ of Christ was both powerful but also gentle, it took my breath away. I felt God say “Do you understand now? Do you see me now?”. In that moment, it was like scales had just fallen from my eyes. I was completely overwhelmed and paralyzed with joy and awe. I absorbed the truth of those words and I immediately prayed for forgiveness.

Since then, I have been focusing on reading the Scriptures… and I mean really reading them! I took all my pointed questions, issues, problems and previous issues, everything to God. Among the many answers I have received in return, I was strongly pointed to Proverbs 3:5. Proverbs 3:5 spoke to me in that God will reveal answers but also calls for trust. I realize now how limited my own understanding is, especially not when I had never bothered to go further than a brief skim read of the Gospel of Luke and John. Upon reflection I realized a lot of my “questions” were really excuses for me to dismiss Christianity outright, so that I didn’t have to listen to anyone else. I had set up those questions and refused to hear answers, so that there was a wedge between God and myself, which I had deliberately put there. I also felt that Christians may as well had spoken a different language to me, but I hadn’t the heart to hear them out.

My partner’s Mum is a Christian and had been sharing truths with me for years, but I wasn’t listening. In my arrogance, I believed she was naïve and wouldn’t be able to answer me if I asked her anything that truly bothered me. Now realizing the truth of Christ and feeling the presence of God I know now I should have taken all my questions to God and trusted in Him first. Since then I have since joined a Life Group with someone who I met the first time I stepped into CityLife. God has called me to start to clean up the wrongs in my life and to let Him restore what has been broken. Thank you for reading this far and apologies this is very long, it is hard to succinctly describe what God has done in my life. All I can say is glory be to God who has shown nobody is beyond his love. Be patient and pray for the non-believers in your life, they are afraid to trust God like I was. I will end this by saying that my partner’s Mum has prayed for me consistently for 8 years and this revelation has been an answer to her prayers. God bless you all.

Posted in October 2021

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