Meet a Christian: Christine

Ade & ChristinePlease tell us a little about yourself and how you became a Christian.

As a little girl, I remember growing up in a very religious home; in fact, my parents were members of what is popularly called a ‘white garment’ church in Nigeria. We strictly wore white garments (and hats for women) to church services with no shoes on; we abstained from different foods including pork; kept little crucifixes on our person or on neck chains for “protection”; drank and sprinkled ‘holy water’, lit candles, prayed, fasted, and so on. But even with all of that, heaven or ‘the sky’ to me felt like impenetrable brass, or a brick wall.  I wasn’t getting through, no matter how much I tried. I began to beg God, ever so often that He would please, please reveal Himself to me if indeed He is “up there”.  I attribute this to the grace of God alone, drawing me.

Well, life continued and I found myself at a cousin’s church, responding to the ‘altar call’ and repeating a ‘salvation prayer’ among the crowd. I thought I had become a Christian. But, I knew nothing about the weight of sin I carried, and the holy God I had offended. So, I went to church religiously, but carried on with my sinful life, and my worldliness. I failed to acknowledge that I had broken God’s laws. I was still lost, and perishing. For years, I only read ‘favourable’ passages of the bible, using them to support the prosperity gospel which I had embraced. I now realise that though I professed to be saved, I did not know the true, holy God of the bible.

In 2010, my husband and I listened to a 16 part biblical teaching on The Sovereignty of God. It was then that I first experience a sound turning point. I never new about my inherent depravity and sinfulness, and my self righteousness, (I’d always thought that I wasn’t that bad), until that point. I realised my need for true repentance, and God’s forgiveness through the only Saviour, His Son, Jesus Christ. By the grace of God, I trusted in His death on the cross for me, and in His resurrection.

Who had the greatest influence on your theological development/Christian life?

Pastor Mark Kielar of Word Pictures. Some of his sermons include The Sovereignty of God, Biblical Stewardship, Born Again, Marks of the New Birth, Scriptural Christianity, A Glimpse of Heaven, A Glimpse of Hell, and Rekindling the Fire.

What is the most helpful Christian book you have read?

I’m still reading J. C. Ryle’s Holiness…taking a while!

Tell us about a favourite Bible verse or passage.

Romans 11:33, “O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! how unsearchable are his judgments, and his ways past finding out!”

Can you share something about prayer?

Prayer continues to be a wonderful privilege whereby I can approach God’s throne to receive forgiveness, grace, and strength daily, and to pray for others, including Christ’s church. I am learning to approach God with reverential fear.

Would you like to share something about your Bible reading/quiet times?

Well, I realised that getting up early while our children are still in bed is the best time for me. I am currently studying the gospel of Luke using bible commentaries such as Matthew Henry’s Complete bible commentary. I also read 365 Days with Calvin. I am in a Bible reading group, alternating the new and old testaments. We recently finished reading the gospel of John. We are now in Deuteronomy.

Do you have a special hymn?

The God of Abraham praise.  The words of this hymn expresse a tiny glimpse of the awesome power and grandeur of the Almighty God.

How does your faith affect your daily life?

Well my other favourite verse: “..for to me to live is Christ to die is gain” (Philippians 1:21) explains it all! I pray often  that the Lord will enable me to view all things, and every situation more and more in the light of eternity. I am also not ashamed of the gospel of Jesus Christ!

Is there anything else you would like to share – words of wisdom/encouragement for younger Christians/married couples/parents etc.etc.

I pray often for Christian youth; they have a lot more pressures from the world to conform to its wicked ways, and the ungodliness isn’t going to get any better! I pray the words of Ecclestiasties 11:9-10, and Romans 12:1-2 become a daily encouragement, as well as in Colossians 3:1-3 which reads: “If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God. Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth. For ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God.”

Young believers are also never too young to pray to advance in understanding the wonderful doctrines and comforts of God’s holy Word. Let it mould and shape your values, tastes, character, and decisions.