The knowledge of God’s mystery is Christ.
–The Apostle Paul
Our hearts are restless until they find their rest in Thee.
I dreamed I saw St. Augustine, alive as you or me.
A bit of autobiography, because we are our stories
And we are known in the telling of our stories…
It was a Sunday afternoon in June and I was sitting on my porch reading a very old book. The book was The Confessions of Saint Augustine and I was reading it primarily because I was somewhat embarrassed that I never had. I knew Saint Augustine was a towering figure whose influence on the church and Christian thought cannot be overemphasized, so I eventually decided I ought to read his spiritual autobiography. Some have called Confessions the first real autobiography in history and if not the first it is certainly one of the most influential. Written 1,600 years ago, the entire book is a prayer—that is, it is addressed to God in the form of a three hundred page prayer of thanksgiving as Augustine reviews his life from his days as a profligate sinner to his life-altering encounter with Jesus Christ. As I sat with old Saint Augustine on my porch that Sunday afternoon, I had no inkling that the story of a fourth century church father would become a pivotal point in my own spiritual pilgrimage. But because it’s a great story and also because it pertains to what I want to tell you, let me share with you how Augustine became a Christian.