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Intersection of Life and Faith

You Know You're a New Christian When...

  • Shawn McEvoy Crosswalk Faith Editor
  • 2006 6 Jun
  • COMMENTS
You Know You're a New Christian When...

Remember when?

 

How did life look for you in the light of a brand new day? When you died to your old self to be born again, what was never the same for you? When the lights went on, when the Spirit filled you with a fresh perspective, what were you like?

 

Do you ever look back on the period immediately following your conversion experience? What kind of memories do you have? Do you miss the fire, and want it re-stoked? Do you grin sheepishly about the splinters you tried to remove from all the eyes around you, oblivious to the big ol’ tree growing out of your own? Or do you laugh in fond recollection of your inaugural season and all the rookie mistakes you made?

 

Recently, Faith Community Network user g_angelzz “was reflecting… on different ‘stages’ I went through when I first came to Christ, and noticed that a lot of new Christians go through them.” Thus began a forum discussion that, by the time I happened upon it, was loaded with all the hopes and hindrances of learning and proclaiming a fresh faith.

 

Many of g_angelzz’s respondents said things like, “That was me!” Or, “I can't believe other new Christians were like that, too!” Admittedly, it was nice to see that I’m not the only person who ever melted a compact disc, or had to learn that the verse says slow to speak and quick to listen, not the other way around.

 

Others who had grown up in the church acknowledged they never really had much of a "new Christian" experience, but even then, if you’ve ever encountered a baby Christian for whom a parable refers to a couple of steers rather than a story Jesus told, this column’s for you.

 

Sometimes things are funny because they’re true, other times the truth stings a bit, and other truths are profound. So we’ve broken the community observations out into four categories. But whatever the case, Psalms 51:6 in The Message paraphrase applies: “What you're after is truth from the inside out. Enter me, then; conceive a new, true life.”

 

So with apologies to Jeff Foxworthy, we present…

 

You know you’re a new Christian when…

(The foibles of on-fire innocence)

 

10.  ...you think Benediction is a chain of restaurants. –figmentPez

 

9.  …you think anyone attending fewer than four Bible studies a week is backsliding. --tomp

 

8.  …your head spins trying to figure the difference between a First Chronicle and a Second Corinthian. –zerblig

 

7.  ...everything, including what's for dinner, is a sign from God as to what you should do (example: tacos are for dinner; God must want me to go to Mexico on a mission trip). –GraceGrabber

 

6.  ...you think Jesus' visage might have been spotted in a taco shell. --kate_paints

 

5.  ...your friends start noticing you saying "oh my gosh" and "oh fiddlesticks" and they find it peculiar. --Naomi-Ruth

 

4.  ...you say "Peter was such a wimp; I would never have denied Christ three times." --elastic_waistband

 

3.  ...you are bummed you can't gossip anymore. Then you try to rationalize gossip to not be gossip, then you gossip, then you repent, then you avoid gossips. Then you realize you've got no one to talk to. --kate_paints

 

2.  ...the idea of tithing 10 percent of your income seems like a really bad investment. –wonchristian

 

1.  ...you plaster your car with Christian bumper stickers. –Tulipgirl.  (Until you realize you speed too much to have Christian bumper stickers! --KDiamond.)  You know you are a new Christian when you don't speed. --Tulipgirl

 

You know you’re a new Christian when…

(Hey! I resembled that remark…)

 

9.  ...you ask Jesus into your heart several times a week, just to be sure it stuck! --GraceGrabber

 

8.  ...you decide to burn all of your secular CDs and vow never to listen to any secular music ever again. --elastic_waistband

 

7.  ...you are suddenly quite an expert at wrong and right, and are quick to say so to others. --g_angelzz

 

6.  ...you invite all your friends to a Bible study at your house… and no one shows. --kate_paints

 

5.  ...you start contemplating that the "end of the age" is definitely happening now and you begin to study this area of the Bible immensely. --g_angelzz [Editor’s note: That was me; I was going to gain a definitive understanding of Revelation! At age 10!].

 

4.  ...you volunteer to run a church project and realize for the first time that even churches have politics! –wonchristian

 

3.  ...you get frustrated at times that non-believers "don't get it", since you finally did. --g_angelzz

 

2.  ...you quote what you think is an appropriate Bible verse for a specific situation and continually get this response from older, wiser Christians: "You're taking that verse out of context!" –KDiamond

 

1.  ...you look at a piece of scripture that theologians have debated for hundreds of years and you don't understand why, because you 'get it' and you demand that others see in that scripture what you see in it... because you are obviously right. --elastic_waistband

 

You know you’re a new Christian when…

(How profound)

 

6.  ...you believe all Christians are Christian. --loveydoveysmom

 

5.  ..."desert experience" is an unknown place in your walk with the Lord. --aslans_canvas

 

4.  ...you try to debate an atheist, only to realize that they know the bible better than you do! --g_angelzz

 

3.  ...friends start telling you "You've changed." And it isn't meant as a compliment. --kate_paints

 

2.  ...you think that you will never have any more troubles or trials. --Hischild1994

 

1.  ...you love your family more, even though your family thinks you've gone nuts. --kate_paints

 

You know you’re a new Christian when…

(Can we get it back?)

 

6.  ...your job and stuff isn't as attractive as it once was. --kate_paints

 

5.  ...you feel a fire under your feet. There are suddenly many things that you must do as soon as possible - start a new ministry, join several different church groups, or go on a mission trip. --g_angelzz

 

4.  ...you buy tracts and leave them in every fast food place you go. --kate_paints

 

3.  ...you feel that you must get the Word out quickly and ‘save’ your family and friends. --g_angelzz

 

2.  ...you think about your previous life and figure God must really love you to still want you after all that. --kate_paints

 

1.  ...you cannot wait to go to church and get more excited about it than any other thing you do during the week. --sunshine4God

 

Did you recognize yourself in any of those? One-liners and zingers are entertaining, but it’s the last few that really remind me what it was like when He made all things new. I may not have mastered Revelation before the onset of puberty, but I do know that in Revelation 2:4 the Lord says, “I have this against you, that you have left your first love.” If that’s the case, hopefully our fun here will remind you what it was like back then.

 

In closing, I can’t put it any better than user davelinde did:

 

“If you haven't been around a new Christian in a while, go find some. They've got baggage and bad habits and rough edges, but a passion and devotion to the newfound truth that is really worth being reminded about...”