I need to take a break now and run to the bathroom please excuse me. I'll be right back
To Those Who 'Believe' In 'Jesus'.
..you wanting a Jaffa cake Skyman? Seriously though - I don't expect anyone to see this as any more than more Q rambling - its just a personal part of me though.
It was that long ago that my Reply would have been more blasphemous than Skyman's, and not nearly as cute as Golf's.
Remember that the relationship is one between Christ and the individual. Who knows what "comment" might be the "trigger" for someone reading this thread.
Some things I take personally, but not such comments. I understand such, because I was a "Skyman" -- only worse.
As a JW I never really gave Jesus a second thought. About 4 years ago, I started feeling drawn to Jesus and I wanted to learn more about him. All of a sudden I had this curiousity about him and I wanted to read his words in the gospels. I had never had that feeling before when I was a JW, but now I was inactive and searching for God, because I didn't see evidence of God in the organization anymore. I had this feeling I was being lead away from the organization to find God. I don't know how else to explain it. Anyway, I couldn't put the bible down for weeks and it was like someone had taken the blinders off and all I could see when I read the gospels and the new testament was Jesus, and something came over me and I realized who he is and that he is my only salvation. After reading the gospels, I felt compelled to pray to Jesus for salvation and to repent for my sins and unbelief. Nobody told me to do this, I just knew from reading his words. It was very personal and the most important thing that has ever happened to me. Inside, I have not been the same since, I know I am different and that I had a spiritual birth at that time. I realized that everyone is invited, but not everyone accepts the invitation. I felt different inside but it is hard to put into words. It is an inner peace and contentment that I did not have before. I felt forgiven and happy, not empty and weighed down as I had as a JW.
Lighten folks, lighten up. The Spirit works in strange ways and it's powerful!
you wanting a Jaffa cake Skyman?
Hey Q, no need to get personal...
My thoughts on Spanner's question:
Do you believe in love at first sight? It didn't happen like that for me and my wife - we fell in love over time. Other people may experience love at first sight (although lust at first sight may be far more common).
As for the holy spirit, some people speak of dramatic experiences, but these are in the minority. Others experience conversion as a process, like Timothy who seems to have come to the faith gradually through the influence of a Christian home.
I don't like the phrase born again when used in a superior way, as if the majority of Christians who turn to Christ more gradually are somehow spiritually inferior. That would seem unChristian to me and to hopefully to be avoided.
I don't believe only Christians have such experiences, that we call the Holy Spirit, it is perhaps above all a new way of looking at the world, and ourselves. The first thing to begin to dissolve is perhaps much of the judgementalism, but this is a journey which must continue throughout life.
Just thinking out loud as usual.
Have you ever noticed that the Holy Spirit is compared to a dove in the Bible? Not a pigeon, but a dove. Pigeon religion: pigeons will nest in any noisy, filthy, crowded, place they can find. Doves: will only nest where it is clean, quiet, and peaceful. When my life is full of un-repentant sin and chaos, and I am unforgiving and beligerent toward others, I cannot experience the presence of the Holy Spirit, until I clean up my heart. The Holy Spirit, in my life, is not a loud, charismatic "show". He is a gentle guiding Spirit that quietly leads me to inner peace. When I am still and listen, I know what is expected of me, and I also know that I have the freedom to obey, or not. It's my choice. The Holy Spirit is peaceful and quiet. And you will know when you have Him working in your heart.