Believe it or not there are some people who have never asked themselves the question. They typically are the cultural raised or 2nd generation Christian who simply followed their parent’s customs.
They are Christian simply because their parents were and their parents were and their parents were, and … You get the point? Or maybe is it the socially accepted religion in your community? Or is it good for business? Or was there a Christian girl that you had a crush on and she would only date other Christian boys? Or were you the rebellious type and did something that your parents would disapprove? The question remains ”have you someplace and somewhere made a personal decision for Christ?
I look at my own life as an example. My parents were both Christians. Dad was a devote Roman Catholic and mother Eastern Orthodox. They sent me to a Catholic grade school and high school where religion was always included in the curriculum. My childhood friends were Catholic. My neighborhood was predominately Catholic. Yet today, I am not a Catholic nor an official member of any one traditional denomination.
Back in my high school senior year, the question entered into my mind, “What is life all about? One day you are born. You experience childhood. Your enter grade school, then high school, then college. You obtain a career, you marry, and if you are fortunate children enter your life. You rear them, switch careers in middle-age; children leave home for school and a life of their own. You retire, travel, spend time with the grandchildren, and then they bury you in the cemetery plot among people you never knew. What is it all about?”
That is the question that led me in search of answers. I found myself in the public and college libraries reading books by people that I couldn’t even accurately pronounce their names. I took comparative religion courses. I read the answers from different religions. I met with the local priest and ministers of different denominations in search of the answers. I spent over two years of intense study on the subject. My search eventually led me to a cult (I didn’t think at the time it was a cult). But they provided answers that made sense. It was a combination of new wave and old fashion religion very attractively packaged.
Basing their answers from the Bible (it was here that I afterward learned how easy it is to manipulate scripture out of context), extracting scriptures from different areas of the Bible, they concluded that we all had the opportunity to become like God as God is God. Again, this was my earlier misunderstanding, but it motivated me to develop a strong, personal relationship with our Heavenly Dad and to the study of scripture. Since then, He’s open my eyes to a more accurate understanding of scripture which motivates me even more and even assures me that God is Good and has my best interest at heart at all times. But, why are you a Christian?
Our Merciful Dad, thank you for caring. Thank you for caring enough to allow us the privilege of living in a country that allows religious freedom. But help us Lord to understand the differences between being a real Christ-follower and a cultural Christian. We want to be real with you. We want to experience the living dynamics of being your child. Lead us and surround us with people who are like you; people who care and want you to live your life in them. Help us surrender ourselves totally into your hands. Take charge of our life. We want to be a God made person and not a self-made person. Help us be a success as you define success. Help us set aside all the vanity that this world exhibits and replace it with your substance. Allow the Holy Spirit full access into our life. Change our heart, mind, body, and soul to exemplify you. Help us be a real person; honest with you, ourselves, and with others. Help us stop playing games and accept our high calling of being a full time committed disciple of Jesus Christ. Thank you for hearing and answering our prayers. Glorify you in all that we do. Amen. Amen.