I’m over at A Deeper Story today writing about my recent conversion:
Do you want to hear about my recent conversion?
It just happened. I mean, you don’t have to believe me or anything. You might be suspicious about this sort of story. Sometimes I am too.
See, back when I was a member at that Reformed Baptist church, they talked about conversion constantly. It was an obsession, to the point that most of the people in the church were unsure if they’d been “truly saved.” There were lots of them who were just about the most dedicated churchfolk you’d ever met who also thought they were unregenerate and hellbound. The neo-Puritan, Edwardsian-revivalist kind of approach had them waiting for an experience of the sovereign hand of God, reaching into their hearts to powerfully convict them of their desperate sinful condition and redeem them to a life of remarkable righteousness.
Until then, they sat on the “anxious bench” waiting to be converted.
That’s not really the kind of conversion I just experienced though. In fact, for me, initial coming to faith in Christ happened pretty early on in my life and has been a slow and gradual journey ever since. There was no radical change, no darkness to light, no “I used to be THIS, but now I’m THIS because of Jesus!” I mean, that stuff is fine, but it just wasn’t my experience. For me it’s been a journey of choosing to believe in Jesus followed by progress and regress and progress and step by step learning and growing.
My recent conversion was not about coming to faith in some total sense, with the threat of hell and sorrow over how terrible I am moving me to trust in the bloody cross and commit to a life of holiness. It didn’t have the anxiety-inducing baggage of God’s wrath towards sin in general and me in particular, nor all the contrived pressure of a radical lifestyle shift from, say, drugging and pimping to singing and serving.
Yet, this experience I just had was radical. It was sudden. It did seem to come from outside of me, graciously, providentially, almost against my will. It really was a work of God in the depths of my heart.
And it happened immediately after watching the season finale of True Detective.