My journey leading to this moment has been very long and somewhat confusing and misguided, that is, until very recently. This prolonged realization was not because of a lack of desire, or effort, but really due to my lack of knowledge and exposure to such questions and answers within my life. I do not come from what would typically be recognized as a religious household. As a child the ideas of God and religion were not heavily discussed or emphasized. This is not to say that my parents are not believers, but more so that they simply never talked about their beliefs with me.
My mother used to take me to a number of different churches, often following her friends to their different congregations of varying religious affiliations. I was exposed to several different forms of Christianity although because of my young age I didn’t recognize or retain any of the significance of attending church meetings. I was there because I had to be. To me it was nothing more than going to daycare or school. However, this didn’t last long. My mother and I stopped attending church of any kind when I was still very young.
Consequently, my understanding and my interest of God and religion remained dormant. As I grew older and entered middle school and junior high I began to wonder about certain questions, ones that I felt uneasy about. I had several friends that I knew to be life long churchgoers, my best friend being one of them. On the other hand I also had several friends that even at that young age had come to their own conclusions that there was no God at all. I was actually very torn with what to believe. I had learned very young that there was a God, but I knew so little about him and what he stood for. In addition, I tended to read and surround myself with science and much of what I learned in science seemed to contradict all that I knew about God, and the stories of the Bible. I remember distinctly in the tenth grade having a conversation with one of my closest friends and he told me that based on all the science that he has learned that there is no way he could believe that there was a God, or a heaven. At the time he made a very convincing argument, and I admit I was inclined to side with him, but I still couldn’t entirely just abandon the idea of God. I felt within me that despite all that he had said, I truly wanted to believe that there was more to life than just science, that there are some things that cannot be explained through a test tube. I wanted to believe that God existed.
This question is the ultimate reason for my exploration into faith. Unfortunately due to my busy life style I still had little time to devote to finding answers to my questions. I also was very hesitant to ask my parents and others influences for help. This was something I wanted to keep private. I began reading the Bible and other articles late in high school. Entering college I became acquainted quickly with several friends that were openly religious. Several of these friends I met directly through the joining of Sigma Chi. Another was my roommate this last year and teammate on the baseball team. I was a little intimidated at first, but I began to ask questions about their beliefs. I had several hour-long conversations pertaining to these topics and soon became involved with a Sigma Chi weekly prayer gathering. Last fall I also began attending a Sunday service with several of my pledge brothers and friends. I also continued to read frequently out of the Bible as well as several other books, simply trying to gain more information and perspective.
Late this past spring semester I was talking with one of my closest friends within Sigma Chi who is on leadership for GreekIV (aka GreekSide) here at Willamette University. He recognized that I had an interest and invited me to come to a meeting. Several of our brothers attend the meetings so I felt comfortable enough to go and at least check it out. I enjoyed the first meeting so much that I decided that this was something I wanted to attend again. It soon became something I began to look forward to during the week. Not only did it allow me to learn more about what it means to be a believer and follower of Jesus, but I also met some extraordinary new people whom I’ve now become very good friends with. I continued to go to the meetings and eventually the staff worker asked me to join her for lunch one day to discuss my background and to answer any questions I might have, so I did. She listened to me explain my story as much as I’ve done thus far. I talked about my family and my personal experiences. I then proceeded to ask a couple questions and she answered them. Then she asked me if I had given thought to committing my life to being a follower of Jesus. I must admit at this time I was taken a little off guard. I had now for some time considered myself a firm believer in God and Jesus, but had not actually acknowledged myself as a follower. As she explained to me what it truly meant, I for some reason became a little hesitant to the idea, which seemed weird to me. Thinking about my life I had always tried to live in such a way that is related to the general teachings of the Bible. I certainly agreed with the messages conveyed within it and I knew in my heart that it was truth. But then I asked myself, why should it be so difficult to go through with this commitment? Why should I hesitate at all?
I actually started to feel guilty that I could not do it that day. I told her I wanted some time to think about it. She gave me a note and I looked at it everyday for two weeks. It was a reminder of the commitment that I hadn’t made, but knew that I should. I just needed something to give me the extra push for it. That something was my friend Craig on the last day of classes walking back to Sigma Chi. As we finished our prayer I couldn’t help but think to myself about the uniqueness of the moment. The day had began like any other and I had proceeded through it without even considering that it was that day that I would commit to being a follower of Jesus. I couldn’t help but think that it was no coincidence that I happened to run across Craig that particular day, and it couldn’t be just chance that he brought it up out of the blue. If I had left the lunchroom five minutes later, or five minutes earlier, I surely would have missed him. We would never have conversed and I would likely still be as I was some months ago, in a limbo of sorts, still unclear about my faith, still waiting for some sort of catalyst. I like to think that it was part of God’s plan for that to happen, just as it did and I’m ever thankful; thankful for Craig, thankful for the support of my friends and new friends in GreekIV, and thankful for God and all that he has blessed me with.
|This Greek IV story was shared by Garrett Davis
Author Website: http://www.willamette.edu/athletics/teams/baseball/roster/athletes/davis.php
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Author Bio: Garrett is currently a Sophomore at Willamette University where he is a member of Sigma Chi and also plays for the Bearcats Baseball team.
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