I thought I was too intelligent to believe in that “Jesus was the Son of God, who died and was resurrected” stuff. I had grown up in a household that was, to say the least, “religiously confused.” In college, I’d carried on the tradition by getting into Buddhism and other Far Eastern mysticisms. Willie and I hardly ever spoke about religion, which was good because the subject made me uncomfortable and defensive. Sometime in the late 1970s, Willie announced that she wanted to begin attending church—an Episcopal church. I put up a bit of a fight, but it was inevitable. After attending a few times, I realized that going to church could be socially advantageous. Besides, being an Episcopalian didn’t require anything of me except getting up and down a lot and reciting prayers in unison. So, I quickly became a cultural Christian. I gave to the church, I served on committees, I even served on our little churches governing body, which did nothing, really, except rubber stamp the priest’s decisions. In so doing, I consoled myself that I was doing all the right things. But I was too intelligent to believe in that “Jesus was the Son of God, who died and was resurrected” stuff. I read lots of books written by people who were convinced they had evidence that Jesus married Mary Magdalene and that after his crucifixion, she and their infant child had fled to France and that Jesus’ descendants had possession of the Ark of the Covenant and that the Catholic Church knew all about this but kept it a secret because the myth was better for business and so on. Suffice to say, I was in a deep state of denial concerning my need for relationship with Jesus. One day, I was in a bookstore looking for more books with which to feed my denial when I ran across Lee Strobel’s The Case for Christ. Lee was a former atheist and investigative reporter who thought he was too intelligent to believe in all that “Jesus was the Son of God…” stuff. Like Willie, his wife was a believer. Out of curiosity, Lee decided to apply his investigative skills to the question “Was Jesus who He said He was?” Upon doing so, he came to the conclusion that the only answer that fit the evidence was an unqualified “Yes!” I read Lee’s book and, being an intellectually honest person, agreed. Nothing dramatic happened. No flashes of blinding light, no earthquakes, no temporary blindness, no tears. Just “Oh! Wow!” It took me a few weeks, in fact, to realize what had happened to me, at which time I told Willie. She was overjoyed. I told my sister and brother-in-law. They were overjoyed. I was overjoyed too. And my life has never been the same. I’ve since dedicated my work to the glorification of my Lord and Savior. I pray that what I do in the world is pleasing in His sight. I’m still a bit wild and crazy, but I’m not nearly as smart as I used to be.
CODA: In November, 2007, Willie and I drove from San Diego to Los Angeles to catch a flight to Hawaii, where I was to speak to several audiences. On the way, we stopped off at HomeWord studios in San Juan Capistrano. Jim Burns, the host of HomeWord, had told me that if I was ever in the area, to let him know and we’d record a show or two. Upon entering the facility, the first thing I saw was a sign that read: Welcome Lee Strobel and John Rosemond! I was floored. It was, I’m certain, one of those “God things.” Lee and I met, chatted, and exchanged signed copies of our latest books. He gave me The Case for the Real Jesus and I gave him the book that had started developing in my head almost immediately after I accepted the Lordship of Jesus Christ, Parenting by The Book. I told Lee that it was his book that had brought me to Christ. I’m sure I couldn’t have given him better news.