What Jesus means to me


I had a certain superficial belief in God but Jesus did not seem real to me in a personal way.

Thanks for clicking on this page about Jesus (p) and what he means to me. On this page I will share a bit about my personal journey of faith and encounter with Jesus.



As a young child I had a certain superficial belief in God. I was educated in Catholic schools as a child and attended Catholic mass with my family regularly. This background laid the foundation for a deeper faith experience in my early teenage years, but until then Jesus did not seem real to me in a personal way. At a crossroads in my life a friend invited me to participate in a junior high school students’ Bible study group sponsored by a local Presbyterian church. At the same time another circle of friends was inviting me to experiment with alcohol and drugs. Studying the Bible with others my age, I came for the first time to understand at a personal level God’s love for me demonstrated in the life, death and resurrection of Jesus. It was that discovery that helped me to see the total emptiness of the search for happiness and acceptance in the “party” life of alcohol and drugs. At this critical time in my life, God gave me the deep joy and peace that only God can offer, and God assured me of forgiveness for all that I had done wrong. If it had not been for this, I might easily have started down the destructive road of alcohol and drugs, just as many of my classmates were doing. As I continued to grow in my faith, I learned through a developing life of prayer that I could rely completely on God’s faithfulness, love and forgiveness in Jesus. As I studied what the New Testament says about Jesus, I marveled at the selfless way in which he spent his life healing the sick, feeding the hungry, calling for justice for the poor, reaching out to widows and to the outcasts of society, and teaching about love and reconciliation with God and with others. I marveled at the culmination of his life when he willingly gave up his life on the cross out of love, so that people could be forgiven and reconciled with God and with one another.



During my university years, Jesus changed my thinking about my life and career. Previously I had thought about these primarily in terms of what would be personally fulfilling and materially comfortable for me. But now, experiencing spiritual fulfillment in Jesus and studying about the selfless life of Jesus, I wanted instead to think about the needs in the world around me and how I might follow Jesus in helping the poor and the oppressed. As I looked at the gifts and training I had in public health nursing, and as I learned about the needs in the Sahel region of Africa, I came to the conclusion that perhaps I could serve in some way in this needy area. I understood Jesus’ words, “Follow me,” in a very personal way. I felt that just as Jesus had given his life in serving the poor and sharing the love of God in both word and deed, I could not see any better way to spend my life than to do the same.


Next Steps

If you would like to know more about Jesus, I would suggest reading the Bible, as I did. Even if you are not a Christian and not interested in the Christian religion, you will find that the biblical story of his life and teachings make fascinating reading. Reading about Jesus’ life and teachings in the Bible can help us to take our focus off the Christian religion and put it on Jesus himself, who is not necessarily the private property of Christians alone. If you don’t know where in the Bible to start, I suggest beginning with Luke, the third book of the New Testament.