I became a Christian and was baptized at the age of 8 yrs old. I was born in 1983. I’ve been a Christian for a long long time. In fact, it’s really strange meeting people older than me who are “younger” than me in their faith.
What evidence would you give for God’s existence?
There’s lots of evidence that God exists, but one I can think of off the top of my head would be the Big Bang Theory. The Big Bang Theory, at it’s essence, says that the universe is not infinite. There was a time that everything that makes up the universe (matter, etc) did not exist. The universe has a beginning, and will have an end.
We know that, logically, nothing comes from nothing. Therefore, the universe must have come from something. The Something must be infinite or eternal (otherwise it too must have a starting point) and it must be powerful enough to start a universe. This Something, whether it as an It or a Person with intelligence, is God.
You notice I’m not arguing for the Personhood of God, just that He must exist. (This is vageuly based off the kalam cosmological argument.) My belief in God does not stand or fall on this one thing though, it’s simply one of many evidences and arguments out there that God must exist.
What is your Favorite Bible verse and Why?
Philippians 4: 6-7 “6 Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. 7 And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”
2 Corinthians 12:7b-9 “…..I was given a thorn in my flesh, a messenger of Satan, to torment me. 8 Three times I pleaded with the Lord to take it away from me. 9 But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.”
As far back as I can recall, I’ve always had problems with anxiety. At times, the anxiety has been so over whelming that I’d get anxiety attacks (which feels like you can’t breath). I have very little control over it, in the sense that I can’t will my anxiety away. It simply exists and I simply must deal with it.
The Philippians 4 verses I learned as a child when my mother discovered I was having extreme anxiety about being driven over bridges because I was seriously afraid they would collapse. These verses taught me I shouldn’t let fear control my life, that when I was anxious I should pray, and if I prayed God would give me peace.
The 2 Corinthians 12 verses I learned much later in life and they taught me that it was possible that God would allow me to suffer so that a greater good would be worked in and through me. God also gives his grace (a different kind of peace) to those he allows to go through suffering. No suffering is pointless and through God we’re able to bear it with joy.
My anxiety is always with me. But because of that anxiety I’m also reminded that God is with me and he’s more powerful than the fear. This gives me the strength to live beyond the anxiousness and it forces me to choose, every day, whether I really believe in a Good God. (Never let anyone tell you that anxiety means you don’t have enough faith! It’s not true at all!)
What was your childhood like?
My Dad enlisted into the Air Force before I was born, so my up-bringing was… unique. I was born in Germany (I have no idea how to spell the city I was born in because of that) and I spent most of my life on military bases and in military housing. I grew up seeing people wear BDUs (now called ABUs), Blues (formal Air Force attire), and having perfectly cut hair (and no beards). Everyone had perfectly manicured lawns (you had to to live on base) and all the buildings were a horrible tan/brown colors and really really old.
(And in case anyone wonders, I only knew one pilot. And while I probably saw more planes than the average kid, it was not very much more. My Dad’s career field had nothing to do with the flight line or planes, so he was typically stationed in places that were more support focused.)
My parents were not what, I think, outsiders might expect from “military” people. My Dad had a fantastic sense of humor and never ever brought the military life-style home with him. My Mom came from a spunky (primarily) Italian family, so she laughed as much as she yelled. I also had a younger sister that I did not like very much because she kept destroying all my stuff (I like her as an adult though). We were all really weird, unique, and little clusters of chaos…. in some ways quite the opposite of the very structured life style we were surrounded by.
When you’re in the military, the kind of family you have makes or breaks you. Everyone else moves away (or you do), so you find all you’re left with is your immediate family (and sometimes not even that in the case of the enlisted parent). There were some tough times, and I faced unique challenges as a “military brat”, but I always loved and was loved by my family. In many ways, I was very fortunate.
What is your current job?
I’m currently working a part time position as a Real Estate Assistant. I like my Boss and my work environment. The pay is alright when I’ve got work (when things are slow I don’t get paid much) but I mostly enjoy it for all the things I’ve learned. Part of my job is taking pictures of the homes my Boss sells, so I’ve been all over town and been in all kinds of houses. It’s really fun! I’m doubtful I’ll ever have a job this fun in the future. (Though you never know! This job came to me unexpectedly, so maybe the next will too!)
Who is your favorite Biblical Figure and Why?
Actually, I don’t really have a favorite. Each person shows me a little bit more about the human condition, about myself. It also shows me what God is like and how he responds to different people in different circumstances. This, to me, is far more interesting than a particular individual.
Who inspires you to be a better person?
My church family. I grew up in the church and took it’s (positive) influence on me for granted. As an adult, I became lax about finding a new church family when I got married (and moved) and sort of drifted. It wasn’t until I realized I was stunted spiritually that I seriously began looking for a new “church home”. Unfortunately, I rushed into it and picked the worst possible church in the area I was living in at the time. It was… well, it was a mistake. The next place I moved I was a lot more careful and managed to find a church that was healthy, vibrant, and–yes–inspiring. Having been without, and having been in a bad one, I can say assuredly that a good church inspires me more than any other one person or thing I’ve ever come across.