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After a few months I decided that this could not go on. I decided that I wanted to go God’s way. I remember trying to strike a bargain with God. I promised to be baptised if He would help me out of my present mess. And so it was that towards the end of my first year at university, to the great relief of my family, I was baptised and joined the Christadelphian “ecclesia” or “meeting” in Reading. For a while everything went happily. I followed the Christadelphian Bible reading plan (3 long portions daily), attended all the meetings and even led the mid-week Bible Study from time to time. But after only a few months a sense of dissatisfaction began to creep in. My relationship with God somehow seemed distant, lacking warmth and vitality. The worldly activities of my student friends still had an irresistible attraction. I could feel myself beginning to slide and began to feel guilty that I was not such a good Christadelphian as the others.

It was about this time that I first became aware that there were other people around who also believed the Bible, but drew different conclusions from it. What was more, there was a joy and a “realness” about these people’s relationships with God which my relationship with Him lacked. I was simultaneously threatened and fascinated by this discovery. To ward off the threat, I studiously applied myself to Christadelphian doctrines and argued against these Christian students whenever the opportunity arose. However I still found myself drawn towards them.

When it came to a choice between an “Arthur Blessit” rally and a Christadelphian meeting, I chose Arthur Blessit. I was holding my own in the intellectual arguments over doctrine, but I was deeply jealous of the joy and freedom from guilt which these Christians knew. I still understood God in terms of someone who might in the end accept me if I tried my best. My guilt stemmed from the knowledge that the best I could manage was just not good enough. <next>