After I truly came to know Christ in my twenties, I still had lots of questions, especially when it came to processing the Old Testament. Because of my Jewish background, my mentor thought it would behoove me to just go ahead and take an OT survey class.
So I promptly signed up for a distance learning course through Moody Bible Institute in Chicago. As I began to learn about and travel virtually through the beginning of time up until the birth of Jesus, so much of our Lord became clear to me, even as deeper questions arose.
One epiphany I had was that my (Jewish) father and I could finally have a common ground to start a conversation on religion! After all, we could agree on the first five books of the Bible (that we know as the Pentateuch) which are also known to the Jews as the Torah, right? But when I went to him with this as the basis for our conversations, he still attempted to debate and disprove me.
Where had I gone wrong?
It took me years from that point to finally come to the understanding that my father was actually a cultural Jew, not a religious one. And it shouldn’t have surprised me. Though we celebrated all the Jewish holidays in our home and I could still chant the Hanukah prayer if you asked me, the only time I ever stepped foot in a temple as a child was for a cousin’s Bar-Mitzvah or the wedding of a family friend. Even at that, if I was asked to give a blessing during a Jewish ceremony, it had to be next to and under the covering of my father. You see, true Jewish heritage is passed on through the bloodline of the mother and since I never had my own Bat-Mitzvah, I wasn’t allowed to take part in Orthodox ceremonies.
Though this used to be one of the biggest dividing points between me and my father, if has now become close to a non-issue.
I stopped trying to barrage him with the facts about why God exists and why Jesus is my Lord and Savior and instead started simply living my life in a way that demonstrates those very principles. Though he still may not agree with my religious stance, he appreciates the consistency of my life and the way it translates into my relationship with my husband and my kids.
I think about all the times people tried to convince me of the gospel before I was a Christian instead of just taking me on their journey with them. Stop searching for all the answers and instead work on articulating your personal testimony. After all, while someone may be able to discredit your stance, then can never dispute your story.