This is Scott Roth’s story of transformation that he read at our Easter Baptism 2012. As a Christian Jew, Scott is now hosting seminars at our Lincoln Park and Edgebrook Campuses to help us share the Gospel with our Jewish friends.
I was raised in a Jewish home and had a bar mitzvah at age 13. In my teenage years, my father left us and I developed a hardened heart and became an atheist for the next 32 years of my life. I was re-married about 3 years ago to my soul mate, Diana – who was also Jewish (click here to read her story). Just 6 months after our wedding, Diana was diagnosed with Pancreatic Cancer. While my whole life I had dealt with issues on my own, this was something that brought me to my knees that I had no control over. About the same time – my 25 year old son informed me he had joined the Catholic Church after exploring Buddhism. I felt very sad in that I could not help him or add anything to that spiritual part of his life. To add salt to my wounds, I had also been out of work for several years. With all these circumstances- I didn’t know where to turn.
I realized I had tried everything on my own and that wasn’t working. It was time for a change. After picking up a Bible for the first time at age 47, I started reading with apprehension. I spent afternoons in the bookstore, walking up and down the Christianity aisles trying to understand what I didn’t know, which was just about everything.
About 2.5 years ago I began to feel connected to God who guided and comforted me through the pain I was experiencing. God delivered, and my wife had a very successful operation and she is winning the war against cancer! Around that time – I became overwhelmed with the need to reach out to my father whom I had not spoken to for 15 years. Something (the Holy Spirit) guided me to forgive him. We met, and I had to do the hardest thing ever, confront him after all this time: I said I was wrong. I said I was sorry. I asked if he would forgive me and if we can start new. We embraced and wept… That night I felt the Holy Spirit flood me as I dreamed of a new life.
I then became intrigued with prayer and “this guy named Jesus”. I approached my wife and told her what I had been experiencing and was not sure if she was ready to hear my journey at the pace it was going. That couldn’t have been further from the truth! She embraced my new found spiritual life and wanted to join me. We both started praying before dinner.
Our first church service was just this past January (2012) and all I can say is…wow, THIS is what I have been looking for. Just after that service, we found out about Alpha and joined that Tuesday. Alpha presented Christianity in a language that we could finally understand.
It was during this process we both took a step of faith and accepted Jesus Christ into our lives as Lord and Savior. Afterwards, my life has felt so much lighter, more positive and I have dropped that angry feeling while gaining more patience – it’s like I just found out they invented air-conditioning! I now understand what is meant by having Jesus carry my load. Today I leave my past life behind and enter into a new life with Jesus as my Lord and Savior. Thank you for accepting two new “Christian Jews” into your community.
If you’re reading this, but not sure what church is, you can learn more here and we’d love to see you this weekend!