It happened about 24 years ago. I was a freshman in college and trying to figure out if the things that I had learned growing up in church were right and true. I was following a pattern that was promised to get me an answer. Basically the pattern is this:
- Study out the things you have been taught
- Have faith that God will let you know that these things are true
- Ask God to let you know if they are true
- God will answer your prayers if you have real intent and are sincere
A simple formula right? So that's what I did. I read and studied. I pondered the things that I learned to see if they felt right. Finally I came to a point where I needed to know if the things I had read and studied were true. I had a sincere to desire to know if God would validate this.
I was alone in my dorm room and took to praying. It was not a short prayer. I detailed out the things that I read and studied. I told God that they “felt” right in my conscience. I then asked if He would let me know that they were right.
It's hard to describe the exact feelings that came over me. The best way to describe it is that every part of my body felt joy and happiness. It was a complete feeling. A feeling of pure elation. When that happened I knew I got my answer. I knew God was there and listening. I knew what was right and true and that now that it had been validated by Him, I had a choice of whether to follow it or turn away from it. I chose to follow.
For me the case for God was made. I know that everyone's experience will be different. Some people may come to know that God is there and then choose not to follow up on it. Some will. For me? The choice was made simpler because it wasn't something I was told to do, but rather something I was given a choice to do. I don't need any more evidence than the personal witness I received 24 years ago.