I like to wonder in amazement at the faith. When I find a person who is really curious, I like to tell them about what really excites me about Christianity. This is very personal, and every person’s testimony is personal to themselves. That is the testimony we should be sharing.
For me, I love two things. I love a thing that is true. I love awesome pictures of space and of nature. I love the wonders of science and the beauty of math. I love using the English language perfectly. Weird, I know. Secondly, I love a story. I love a hero. I love a hard fought victory, a real victory. I love a rescue. I love to cry for a well-earned happy ending.
When I come across a true story, I turn to jelly. Just writing this, my eyes are watering. Again, weird. I know. So you can imagine what Christianity does to me, right?
“The only way the Bible makes any sense is to take it at face value. Once you give it the kind of credit you give the daily newspaper, it blows your mind.”
Take a fallen creature, like man, a ruined and doomed creature. Have him loved by his maker for no apparent reason and then have that pure good God do a thing that had never entered the mind of man in order to save him (1 Cor 2:9). These are things even the angels did not imagine (1 Peter 1:12). It is so grand, so stunning a tale, that it leaves me speechless, on my face. And it is true.
Follow that with the man Christ, who was born into simple circumstances, standing in front of kings, raising the dead. By all accounts this man defined the word hero. No, in fact, his life showed the word for all its shortcomings. In his light, there never was another victory, but just the shadow of it. Every other battle where good has overcome evil is no more than the throwing of rose petals at the feet of the one true victory this fallen world has ever seen. Christ has so many names because it takes the essence of so many grand words to attempt to fit an accurate picture of the man into the human mind. And if you understood all the languages of the world and all the words he has been truly called, I imagine you might just begin to get a glimpse of him. And it is true.
And while I cannot pick my three or five or fifty favorite verses of the Bible and print them here, I must say, that anyone who reads, and likes to read, and who knows anything about people, must, if he reads the scriptures with honesty, find it amazing. There is nothing like it. The words are mind blowing! Where could they have come from?! If you know anything about stories—I don’t claim to be an expert, but I sure do love them and have thought a lot about them—this story is different. It rings both true and shocking.
The defining moment of my conversion was when I was in my late twenties. I grew up basically agnostic. But for one well-placed Bible thumping grandmother, I had no real exposure to Christianity. I have a bachelor’s degree in philosophy and a Masters in filmmaking. So, flash forward, I’m twenty eight. Two weeks earlier I’d had a sort of breakdown at around 2am in the living room of my apartment. Life sucked and I was yelling at the god I thought I knew, probably because I had no one else to yell at. In the middle of that tearful rant, God spoke to me. He said, basically, that for all my reading and knowing, I had never read his Word.
Now, this was off the point, I thought. I was ranting about my failed film career among other things and he was talking about the Bible. His point was that I could hardly blame him when I hadn’t even looked at the most read book in history. That, for all my knowing, I had really not been very open-minded. And maybe before I started popping off, I should hear what he had to say.
It was a bit shocking to hear from him that way, and though, it did seem off the point, I did what he said. I think it spooked me a little. The next day I went and got a Bible and began reading it.
Two weeks later, I was going through the Gospels for a second time, because for some reason none of it really stood out to me on the first read through. I’d read a lot of stuff in my day, but I could not figure this book out. It was like I was blocked. Anyway, that one night, two weeks after the breakdown, it was like the words came off the page. I started reading The Gospel of John as a serious book. And I couldn’t believe what I read. It occurred to me that this man, this Jesus, was actually who he said he was.
It added up. It made perfect sense. The only way the Bible makes any sense is to take it at face value. Once you give it the kind of credit you give the daily newspaper, it blows your mind.
Ever since then I’ve just been adding one amazing awareness after another to my faith and my testimony. And it just gets better the more you read it. The only time the Bible gets stale is when you stop reading it. Just yesterday I read Matthew 9:29, “Then he touched their eyes, saying, ‘According to your faith be it done to you.’” I bet I’ve read that twenty times in my life. Maybe more. But right now I just can’t get it out of my head. He healed a couple of poor blind guys because they believed he could do it. I think about that. Blessed are the poor, blessed are the pure in heart. He’s fulfilling that promise, putting it in their hands. The fulfillment of God’s love to people. Right there. And these guys are just two of many he did this for like he just bumped into them in the grocery store. I’m staring at this event as if I was there, and I can’t get it all into my head.
That’s the kind of stuff I love to talk about. Psalm 89:1 – “I will sing of the LORD’s great love forever; with my mouth I will make your faithfulness known through all generations.” I’m not saying I live up to that, but I’m trying to.