My Story


Picture it — summer 1997. I had graduated from college, and as many people do, I was searching. I should have been searching for a job, but I was coasting along, feeling comfy in my temp assignment with a professor from my alma mater. I was searching for truth and meaning. I was sorting through the assertions that various worldviews had made into my life throughout my college career.

I had been raised in church. I read Bible stories from the time I was little. But I had never made that faith my own. I didn't know what I believed or why I believed it.

The Brits would say, "Elena was in a muddle." Yep, a muddle.

My sister {code name: Ashpenaz} and I walked around the neighborhood several times that summer, and during those walks, I bombarded her with questions. She had just graduated from high school, and she had been attending a small church, going to its activities for youth. I asked, "Since each of us is a unique individual, doesn't God deal with each person differently?" I wasn't trying to assert that there are many paths to heaven... but that each person's journey to find the Truth is as unique as he or she is. I don't remember why that question nagged me so. Eventually, I asked some question that Ash couldn't answer. She said, "Go to church. Talk to the pastor. He can offer better answers than I can."

At first I hesitated. But my burning questions kept, well, burning.

Ash suggested that I go with her to this class that the pastor's wife would be teaching on Sunday nights. I'm sure part of me thought, Sunday nights? Only the most dedicated go more often than just on Sunday mornings. The other part of me probably thought, Oh, it's that easy?! Great!

So I went. The class, Survival Kit for New Christians, was exactly that — a class for new Christians. Um, yeah, I wasn't a new Christian. I wasn't even born again (yet)! Blessedly for her, the Bible study teacher had fair warning that I'd be coming. (And it helped that she and her husband were family friends from the time when her older daughter and Ash were in preschool.) In later years, she did admit that she had a bit of trepidation about how to frame her teaching for someone who hadn't prayed to receive Christ. But she was glad that I would be attending.

~ to be continued ~