Teaching series title image

Speaker: Riverside Church

At Riverside we are on a journey to help people get to know Jesus and grow as his followers across Birmingham and beyond. Whoever you are, whatever you believe, you're so welcome in this community.
October 10, 2023
A Riverside Story | Ben



Becoming A Christian

I’m Ben. I’ve been coming to Riverside for, I reckon, almost 10 years now. You’ve obviously seen me playing the drums, serving that way throughout the church. I grew up in a Christian household. My parents always took me to church from a very young age, basically, right from the word go, right from when I was born. I made a lot of friends through church, and I think I made a commitment to follow Jesus when I was around maybe 12, 13. And it’s not always been the easiest journey in faith.


Trusting Jesus

There’s been times when I’ve had a lot of questions and few doubts and everything. There have been times when I’ve gone to church more out of routine rather than wanting to go. But I’ve always held on to my faith, even if it’s been a bit more threadbare. I’ve held on to my faith and I’ve always trusted in Jesus. Even if I haven’t felt like it, I’ve always just tried to trust in Jesus in everything that he’s doing in my life, really. So, for example, I had a few issues in my late teens and early twenties with anxiety and depression, where I was really, really struggling. And I just cried out to God and just said, look, can you just help me here because I’m really struggling? And there were times I almost felt guilty about that because I was like, well, I’m just relying on God when I need him, not through the good times. And then I would slip back into old habits and I was drifting a lot in my faith.


Discovering Riverside Church

I came back from university. It didn’t go so well at university for me, came back. I didn’t really feel the same in the church that I’d grown up in and I never felt settled. But then I came to Riverside Church, came on Sunday. I think instantly I felt at home, I felt welcome at the church. And it wasn’t one of those things where I started to increase my faith straight away. It took time and encouragement from a lot of people and people seeing things in me that I didn’t see in myself, which was really great for my self-esteem, because my self-esteem was also quite low. And it really helped to strengthen my faith. People just encouraging me to get involved in certain ministries into certain things. And I was like, Well, can I really do this?


Growing In Faith

But people just had faith in me and had a belief in me as a Christian, and it really increased my faith, and it really helped me in my journey, but also being mentored by other people as well. People who have challenged me on some behaviour that in a very loving way, they’re like, well, do you think as a Christian, that is something that you should be doing? I’m like, well, I think because the approach they took, I was like, Oh, yeah, maybe that’s something I need to think about. And it’s helped my faith to grow exponentially and nothing can know when it’s perfect. I’m not perfect. So just learning to surrender that to God, really, when I get frustrated or a bit, I feel like I want to go backwards or I feel like I want to go the world’s way again, I’m just like, Lord, help me not to go down that path and just give me patience to persevere. The best place for me to be on a Sunday is in Church. I really like it. I really like it here. No church is perfect, of course, but this was a great place for me.


Serving: Glorifying God

I would say that you’d be surprised what would need doing or how you can serve. There would probably always be opportunities to serve in some way. You might not think that you’re serving, but you are. Even if it’s just you’re helping to put things away on a Sunday or helping to greet people or helping to stack chairs away, you might think that all that’s not really serving. But actually it is, because every little thing that you do is so helpful, and I definitely knowing that I’m glorifying God, and also because I do feel strongly as a Christian that it’s an important thing to do. Yes, I know we’re not measured by our works and everything, we’re measured by faith, and that’s scriptural. But I just think that the Church can’t function without me or people serving, and it’s so, so important. It can free up other people as well. So don’t count yourself out of things. And if you see something needs doing, offer a hand to other people. I appreciate not everyone might be that confident to do that. But there are roles, there’s always something I believe that you could probably do.


Get Involved

If like Ben you would like to get involved with helping to run some of the events that happen at Riverside Church, in order to help people know Jesus and to grow as his follows, we encourage you to explore the skills and abilities that God has given you by joining a Team or by checking out our ‘Strength Finder Resources’. Simply click the ‘Register Interest’ button on our Teams Page today.





Riverside is a church made up of people from a diversity of backgrounds and experiences all with one thing in common, our discovery of God and his amazing love. 

We are on a journey together to ‘help people get to know Jesus and grow as his followers’. 

Upcoming Events:

Full information about all the upcoming events at Riverside Church can obtained from the events page of our website. You can filter via ‘Featured‘, ‘Monthly‘ or ‘Weekly‘ or you can also view ALL events and filter by category using our ‘Church Calendar‘.

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