I find it amazing that we can take a million steps backing away from God, but it can only take one step forward to find God. I want you to know that even though you may feel very far away from God, God is right there. I took many steps away from God. I chose to take a few steps in God’s direction before I was ready to take that last, ultimate step of faith to knowing God. Now every step I take need not be a step away or toward God, but with God.
The following are some positive, practical steps you can take on your spiritual journey:
Pray a Seeker’s Prayer
This was my prayer, “God, if you exist, then prove yourself by making a mailbox spontaneously combust (explode) or make an upside down rainbow.” I honestly can’t tell you why I wanted to see these two very specific proofs. Would I have remained an Agnostic or believed in God if I’d found a golden egg on the way to my geology class?
I recommend a prayer that’s a little less bizarre. The following prayer gives God the space to answer in the best way for you:
God, if it’s possible to have a relationship with you, then I want to know you. Help me see what may be keeping me from knowing you personally and experiencing your love. I don’t want to just believe what other people say is true about you, but I want to know who you really are and follow your plan for my life.
Explore the life of Jesus. I bought an audiotape version of the New Testament. I still remember thinking, “Oh brother…” as the New Testament book of Matthew starts with a loooong list of names. I encourage people to start reading the Bible with the book of John (in between the books of Luke and Acts). It’s one of four books focused on the life of Jesus. It can be really helpful to find a translation that sounds normal to you, not filled with words you don’t hear in day-to-day life.
Explore easy-to-read online articles. If you’ve read all the articles on this site and want to read more, I recommend a website called www.everystudent.com. It has a lot more articles and specific topics you can search for within the site. It’s also in multiple languages.
Explore a movie on the life of Jesus. If you like apps and movies, check out the Jesus Film Media app (www.jesusfilmmedia.org). It has the Bible’s book of Luke in the form of a movie in over 1,200 languages.
Ask & Talk
When I was in the midst of my search for truth, I turned to my sister and said, “Kelly, I’m lost. I don’t know if God exists or if I exist.” Talking to my sister and asking her questions was really helpful. She was able to help me identify a few of the many misconceptions I had about what Christians believe. Talk to someone you trust and respect who seeks to truly love and follow Jesus.
Pray a Prayer of Faith
Once I believed God was real, I expressed my faith to God in a prayer. I prayed, “God, I believe you exist and all this Jesus stuff really happened. I’m going to buy myself a Bible and do whatever you want me to do.” It just seemed like a natural thing to do; just talk to God and express my heart’s desire. If it would help you to know what to pray, consider praying the following prayer to God. Pray, if you believe the Christian worldview is true, if you know you need Jesus, and you are willing to receive God’s grace by faith and not by your own goodness:
God, I believe you exist and made me to know you personally and enjoy your forever. I believe Jesus died to forgive all the selfish and broken things I’ve done. I want to know you and have you become the most important, intimate, and satisfying part of my life. Help me understand the Bible and follow your plan for my life. Thank you for hearing and answering my prayer.
If you pray this prayer, tell a Christian friend. In addition you can find helpful online resources at www.startingwithgod.com.
Whatever your next step is, I encourage you to take it boldly and see where it leads you!
Explore Your Perspective:
- Do you have a safe person or community of Christians whom you can ask your honest questions?
- Which step, or steps, do you want to start taking today?
- Do you sense God has been speaking to your heart? What is God saying to you?