“I can just about remember what my life was like before I knew Jesus. My parents were Christians but because I was a small child, I did not understand what the whole point of church was. For all I knew the Church that I was in could have been worshipping muesli (just imagine that horrible possibility for three seconds: “Oh holy muesli…”).
My family moved to Manchester when I was three years old. Being in a new environment at this age was very tough for me since I had much difficulty making friends. Anybody who knew me between the ages of three and six would understand that I was not the type who would do this easily, since I was diagnosed with mild Autistic Spectrum Disorder which probably did not help my social skills.
I was not properly introduced to Jesus until I was six when my parents gave me a Children’s Bible, ‘The Eager Reader Bible’. It had wonderful drawings in it that could help me understand what I was reading, since at this age I was more of a visual learner than anything else. Through reading this book by myself and with my parents I learnt what to know and believe, as well as what the purpose of church had been in my life (the bad news for absolutely no one was that muesli had nothing to do with anything!). It was through reading this book that I fully realised who Jesus was and that I wanted Jesus to be my friend. It was the hope that his message gave me that was what stuck about for all of my life from then.
Being socially introverted no longer seemed to matter because I had already found my perfect friend and it was the type of relationship that could carry on until after death. One of the best parts about getting to know Jesus was that my life from then on felt like a whole blessing in the things that happened. I knew that any problem I had I could just commit to him. I learnt how to make friends, and I learnt how to deal with any feelings of isolation and loneliness that I would ever have. This is why I can confidently say that giving my life to him was a decision that I treasure and will never regret, and I hope and expect to be accepted into heaven by him at the end of my days (maybe there will be muesli there too!).”
- Josh Bell, Second Year, Natural Sciences