Last week I was sitting in Starbucks when someone from our Children’s Ministry staff came in. She was the first person I ever volunteered with at church, so we go back quite a few years. We got to talking about the idea of conviction and how it affects what we do. She had read about conviction earlier that day in a devotional, and she was taking that idea and using it to challenge some of her younger Children’s Ministry volunteers to step up into a stronger role.
Her thoughts about conviction got me thinking a lot about the role it plays in my students. If I look at the guys who seem to have the strongest relationship with God–the ones who really get it–I see a stronger sense of conviction. They’re convicted to read their Bibles more, pray more, do things that are outside their comfort zone to grow in God. So where does this sense of conviction come from in them?
As I’ve looked more into this Christian use of the word “conviction,” I’ve found that it comes partly from the Greek word for “faith.” That would lead me to believe that conviction and faith go hand in hand. You can’t have conviction without first having faith. In those students I was talking about above, they have a faith that is strong and growing. Because of this, they also seem to have a stronger sense of conviction.
I know that’s just one idea that plays into the idea of conviction, so now I turn it to you. In your experience, where does conviction come from? Is it something that can be instilled in someone, or does it have to come about organically through a basis of faith?