Anyone who knows me, knows I’m nothing out of the ordinary. And if you don’t know me already, please understand this one thing: I am a normal human being. Quirky, yes. I always danced to the beat of my own drum, and you either love it or hate it. But I was not raised in any extraordinary circumstances, and I have many, many flaws. I wasn’t that kid who had visions or talked to angels or had a supernatural understanding of scripture or doctrine. Understanding that will make this story even more beautiful: despite my utter normality, God cared enough about me to work miracles in my life. He didn’t hold my sins over my head, shame me for my bad habits and behaviors, or give me the silent treatment for spending the first 25 years of my life not really “needing” Him. The day I decided I had had enough, that I couldn’t go on without Him any longer, that I needed his guidance and His hand in my life, was the day He opened the heavens to me, freely. Little did I know at the time that He actually orchestrated the events that brought me to my knees, in total submission to Him and His plan.
I was raised in a very devout Christian faith, and I believe in its gospel and foundational principles with all of my heart. We were very strict growing up: we followed every rule, didn’t cross any lines. As my father’s understanding and appreciation for the gospel and our Savior grew, he began to realize how much our particular religion had strayed from its original path. Not that the organization or its people were evil, not at all — but the doctrines that were being preached from the pulpits were watered down and somewhat lifeless. He taught my siblings and I at a very young age everything he was learning as he learned it, and everything he was learning could be backed up heavily by scripture. He taught us the true concept of Faith, he taught us what Baptism by Fire really meant, and most importantly he taught us about personal revelation: that God can and WILL speak to us on a very personal level, if we just ask. I believed all of his teachings and had accepted them with my mind, but never put them to the test, to really know of its truthfulness in my heart.
This whole thing started as a sort of experiment: it was November 2013, I was in a pit of total and utter despair, and the only thing I hadn’t tried was turning to the Lord. Not just saying a prayer and feeling His love, but really turning to Him and expecting Him to give me direction, to talk to me, to guide me in all the ways I had always professed to believe that He would. This is the story of my conversion to Christ. This is the story of what God can and will do for us if we trust Him. It doesn’t matter what religion you are, I’m not here to preach or convert anyone to any organization, and the only things we must agree on to avoid any misunderstanding are this:
1] Christ is our Lord and Savior,
2] We are Saved by His grace, and
3] There is no other name by which we can be saved
Everything in this story is true. Nothing has been enhanced or fabricated or changed for any reason [except some names]. Much of it is excerpts from my own personal diary, quoted word for word. I ask that you start from the beginning, as you may miss out on pertinent information if you jump right in the middle – this story builds on itself entry by entry. To be honest, I have to admit that at this point I only have half the story written, because I’m only halfway through living it: I am still in the thick of it, waiting for deliverance from God. I haven’t seen my Miracle yet, but I’ve seen many small ones along the way and I believe with all my heart that my miracle is right around the corner.
As you read, you will begin to notice a common running theme, something that I have endearingly coined, “Spiritual Chess.” A game of good vs. evil, light vs. dark where winner takes all, and “all” is your soul. Ponder this concept in your heart, and you will begin to see that you have a game of Spiritual Chess going on in your very own life, as well.
Some of this story might seem far-fetched, too wild, or even downright weird. I urge you to open your heart and listen to the Spirit as you read. Let loose your traditions, let go of the things you might think you know to be fact or fiction. My hope is that you will read this with an open mind and heart, pray about the things that are new to you, things you don’t understand, and perhaps apply some of what I have learned and experienced into your own life. My prayer is that my story expands your mind, enhances your understanding, fills you with questions, and brings you closer to God. There are many churches, many religions, many interpretations of the gospel but only one God. This is the story of how I came to know Him, and what happens when He talks and we listen.