My conversion was an event I lived believing had already taken place.
From going to Sunday School as a child, I perceived that I was saved solely because I was a “good girl” who did what the world considered right and said my goodnight prayers every night.
Later on in life, I stood up at a Christian youth convention to profess that I was a Christian, only to realize later that that moment was solely based on emotions created by the speaker and loud music.
Today, however, I can confidently confess that I am a born again Christian.
The events that pointed me to Christ were my battle with anxiety, questioning my standing with God, and my conviction from the Holy Spirit.
My journey with anxiety
I developed anxiety and began to have panic attacks during my senior year of high school.
This led to anger, poor life choices, and simply feeling abandoned by God. During all this, I cried out to God many times to take my anxiety and panic away from me, to heal my sadness and fix all my problems.
When He didn’t answer me the way I wanted, I decided that I had to find a solution to my anxiety on my own.
I took on the worldly path to healing, doing what made me “feel good” and what was best for me. If that meant hurting others, destroying friendships, or demanding respect, I did it.
Essentially, I became selfish.
Yet, somehow, I still believed I was saved and that God was still listening to me and on my side.
Questioning my standing with God
That view did not take long to change however.
Within a few months of treating people poorly and letting my anxiety control my every thought, I realized how selfish and inwardly focused I had become.
I took note at how my behaviors did not line up with those of a Christ follower, my thoughts were not heavenward, and I could not find any peace from God in my anxiety.
The lack of seeing Christ in me made me wonder if I was actually saved.
I messaged a wise youth leader and confessed all that I had done in the past few months and how awful of a person I felt I had become.
I told her that I did not even know where I stood with God at this point.
Instead of trying to console me and tell me that my anxiety was not my fault and it was all understandable, she took me straight to God’s Word.
Finding healing in the Word of God
From this point, I studied God’s Word every day, seeking to not just read on the surface level as I always had but to dig deep and truly understand what it meant for my life.
My youth leader led me through from the beginning of the Bible, establishing the truth in me of what salvation means and what being a Christian truly looks like.
No one had ever done this with me before, no one had ever explained what salvation looked like in the life of a believer.
I had lived my life basing my salvation on how many Bible verses I had memorized and if I practiced the proper “Christian disciplines” daily.
I knew about the gospel, I knew about grace, but I was not acting on them.
Through the conviction of the Holy Spirit, I was in tears before God asking for forgiveness of my many sins.
The Holy Spirit’s changing work
In conclusion, my journey to conversion was one of ironic ignorance. Despite how confident I was in my salvation and knowledge of God, I was far from Him.
But through my battle with anxiety that God allowed in my life, questioning my faith, and the Holy Spirit convicting me of my sins, I became a true follower of Jesus.
Since then, I have been changed in my thoughts and actions, and every day the Holy Spirit is working and sanctifying me to the image of Christ.