Skip to main content

What is your Christian Experience?

For some non-work paperwork that I’ve been working on today, I am having to write out the answer to this question: What is your past Christian Experience? That’s gotten my thinking. A lot.

Why? There’s a couple of things involved in my mind.

Number 1: It’s a hard-simple question in general. I can tell you about being raised in a believing family, about becoming a believer in Christ myself, and that I’ve grown (hopefully) in faith since then. But at the same time, there’s much more to “Christian Experience” than just the date on a baptism certificate. There are the ways that I’ve grown, stumbled, and gotten back up. The influences that have been there along the way.

And what are the current influences? How has this shaped me or that event affected me? It’s a remarkable mass of situations to put together. And then to reduce to a page or two---that’s the rub!

Number 2: I’ve had to do this before. Many times for different reasons---and I’m sitting here wondering what the comparison would be between prior answers and the one I’ll get written today. How have I changed over the years in my own perception of what “Christian experience” means? What is different about that? When I went to seminary, all I wrote out was my testimony of salvation and baptism. Yet those brief moments do not an instant Christian make: there is more to life than that.

The idea of your own Christian experience should have grown as you’ve grown in faith. It’s not static: both your own testimony should record growth, but also how you see it should mature as well. If it all reads like cut and paste from a testimony book, it’s probably not what it should be. It would be well worth your time to stop and consider the question. You may not be as articulate as others, but it’s your own story---be able to put it together and share it.

 

Doug

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Book Review: The Heart Mender by @andyandrews (Andy Andrews)

The Heart Mender: A Story of Second ChancesEver read a book that you just kind of wish is true?  That's my take on The Heart Mender by Andy Andrews.  It's a charming story of love and forgiveness, and it's woven into the historical setting of World War II America.  For the narrative alone, the book is worth the read, but the message it contains is well worth absorbing as well.However, let's drop back a minute.  This book was originally published under the title Island of Saints.  I read Island of Saints and enjoyed it greatly.  Now, Andrews has released it under a new title, with a few minor changes.  All of this is explained in the Author's Note at the beginning, but should be noted for purchaser's sake.  If you read Island of Saints, you're rereading when you read The Heart Mender.  Now, go ahead and reread it.  It will not hurt you one bit.Overall, the story is well-paced.  There are points where I'd like more detail, both in the history and the geog…

Curiosity and the Faithlife Study Bible

Good morning! Today I want to take a look at the NIV Faithlife Study Bible. Rather than spend the whole post on this particular Study Bible, I’m going to hit a couple of highlights and then draw you through a few questions that I think this format helps with.



First, the basics of the NIV Faithlife Study Bible (NIVFSB, please): the translation is the 2011 New International Version from Biblica. I’m not the biggest fan of that translation, but that’s for another day. It is a translation rather than a paraphrase, which is important for studying the Bible. Next, the NIVFSB is printed in color. Why does that matter? This version developed with Logos Bible Software’s technology and much of the “study” matter is transitioning from screen to typeface. The graphics, maps, timelines, and more work best with color. Finally, you’ve got the typical “below-the-line” running notes on the text. Most of these are explanations of context or highlights of parallels, drawing out the facts that we miss by …

Foolishness: 1 Corinthians 1

In Summary: 1 Corinthians opens with the standard greeting of a letter from the Apostle Paul. He tells who he is with (Sosthenes) and who he is writing to. In this case, that is the “church of God that is in Corinth.” He further specifies that this church is made up of those who are sanctified in Christ Jesus and called to be saints. 
He then expresses the blessing/greeting of “grace and peace” from God. From there, Paul reflects on his initial involvement with the Corinthian people and the beginning of the church. After that, though, there are problems to deal with and Paul is not hesitant to address them. He begins by addressing the division within the church. Apparently, the church had split into factions, some of which were drawn to various personalities who had led the church in times past. There is no firm evidence, or even a suggestion, that Paul, Cephas, Apollos, or anyone else had asked for a faction in their name. Further, the “I follow Christ” faction may not have been any le…