I recently started a discipleship class through the Crossroads Jump School. We had homework every week and the first week we were asked to answer the question ‘Have I been born again?’ This question surprised me at first because I was sure that I was born again, but after taking that first class I wasn’t sure anymore.
I was led to Christ as a 8-year-old by a bible camp counselor. She led me aside and told me that I needed to ask Jesus into my heart to be born again. I did that and thought I was saved. I don’t remember her name, I remember her being old and the reason that she sought me out was because I was crying every day because I was homesick and I was ashamed of that. I thought that if I asked Jesus into my heart it would stop being homesick. It didn’t work and I don’t remember her ever saying anything else to me the rest of the week.
I was raised in church and had Christian parents. But there was not enough money, a lot of fighting, a lot of judgment and shame, and not a lot of teaching or discipleship. My parents did the best they could. My whole life I presented myself as a ‘born again Christian’ and I tried to stay in church although there were periods of dry years where I didn’t go at all. I was angry, gossipy, judgmental and felt emotionally damaged. I suffered from depression which sessions of counseling and medications did not alleviate. Life was not easy and I made many mistakes in my life. I thought I was raising my son in a Christian home and I thought he accepted Christ when he was young, but mistakes seem to repeat themselves unfortunately and I don’t think he truly is a Christian. But I am his prayer warrior and he knows it.
My husband and I started going to Crossroads East Side when it opened 3 years ago after not going to church for many years. We did not join any group or volunteer, but we were faithful about attending every week. In January 2020, we signed up to be on the First Impressions team and we joined the Senior group and started going to the weekly Bible study with this group. When the pandemic hit in March, we couldn’t go to our Bible study, couldn’t volunteer, couldn’t even go to church. I stayed faithful with the onLine services, but my husband says he got ‘nothing out of them’ and stopped watching. I also got furloughed from my job even though I am a nurse and supposedly was in an essential job. When I got furloughed, I started listening every day to the morning and evening worship services and I downloaded the Crossroads Anywhere app. For 256 days I have used this app and these would be consecutive days except I missed one day when my beloved daddy died on Nov. 8. For the first time in my life I actually read the Bible daily, understood what I was reading with the help of the people who journaled, prayed daily and meditated on what I was reading. I joined the prayer team on the app and asked for prayers and I shared some of my own thoughts in the journals. Even though I have never met these people who are on this app and are as faithful as me about their time with God, I feel a closeness to them.
Back in the fall I joined the Going Deeper group and did Alpha. God has been changing me. I feel a personal loving relationship with Him. Then I started the discipleship course and I can feel God working in me even more. So, when I am asked ‘am I born again’ I can answer yes. I am 64 years old, so have I been born again for 56 years or for 256 days. If I had died when I was a teenager, would I have gone to heaven? I am not sure, but if I died today, I know I will rush straight into Jesus’ arms. -Theresa M.