The Day I Walked the AisleApril 6, 2023
I’m one of those individuals who can’t pinpoint the exact time of my conversion to Christ. I know that, like all others, I was born a fallen and morally depraved person who was in desperate need of being born again. But when that event we call regeneration occurred, I cannot tell.
I was blessed to be born into a Christian family. My father was a wonderful Christian man who loved his wife and children without fail. Better still, he loved the Lord Jesus Christ. He was committed to leading his family in the life of the local church, and he did. We never, and I mean quite literally never, missed a Sunday service. In those days, in the Southern Baptist churches in which I was raised, we never missed a Sunday night service, or for that matter, a Wednesday evening prayer meeting.
My mother was just as fervent in her faith in Christ, as was my sister. Our house was filled with worship day and night, as my mother and sister were exceptionally gifted on the piano.
All this to say that I don’t recall the moment I transitioned from an unbelieving, unregenerate young man into a born-again follower of Jesus. I’m quite sure that event occurred, but either my memory fails me or it was more of a gradual process of growth into Christian faith. There was undoubtedly a definitive act of God the Holy Spirit when he imparted to me spiritual life, but I simply don’t know when it happened.
But I do know and remember quite vividly the day when I made my faith in Christ public. A “revival” meeting was being held at the First Baptist Church in Shawnee, Oklahoma. For those of you who grew up, as I did, in the Southern Baptist Convention, you know what I mean when I refer to a week of “revival” meetings. I can’t recall the day of the week, but I vividly remember telling my dad that I wanted to “walk the aisle” and publicly profess faith in Christ and be baptized.
At the first sound of Just as I Am, played, as it turned out, by my mother on the piano, I stepped out and made my way to the front. The day was April 6, 1960, exactly 63 years ago today. I was baptized the following Sunday night. I’m not sure what prompted me today to remember that this was the 63rd anniversary of my public profession of faith, but I’m so incredibly grateful to my family and especially so to the Lord for his saving mercy that I felt I needed to acknowledge it publicly yet again.
Praise God for his indescribable kindness in saving this wretched sinner and granting him eternal life!