Somewhere around the summer of 2009 my life was changed. I’m still reflecting on the specifics, but here’s what I know:
Persuaded and convinced that there is a God – a Creator and Ruler – I was very conscious that my relationship to him was no source of comfort. I did not know him, and I had not previously wanted to know him. In fact, it seemed that life would have been much more convenient if I could have just gotten rid of him. But I knew I couldn’t do that – he is God, after all!
My parents had told me about ‘the gospel’ – the opportunity to have this estranged relationship repaired, through faith in the Son of God, Jesus Christ. Many others had reiterated the same gospel to me, but it just didn’t seem to add up. Reconciled to God for free? No, no, no – that neither added up nor boosted my ego. It just couldn’t be the case…
And so I was trying to earn this grace that would see me reconciled with God. I was trying to read my Bible every day, pray ‘earnestly every day, quit the habitual sins that had taken root and make amends for the pain I had caused my parents during my teenage years. But it didn’t work. Grace had to be free, or else I was done for.
Well, it came home to me towards the end of the summer in 2009. Something happened, I can’t explain what, but I was struck by the truth that God loved me. Overwhelmed by this reality – that God loves me – of course this gospel made sense! Free grace flows from the heart of a God who is love – of course it does! It was my great delight to give myself over him, he had captured my heart.