1. Before you became a Christian, the idea of writing a Christian cover of One Direction’s That’s what makes you beautiful called Jesus’s love is beautiful would have seemed, quite frankly, awful. However it is not long before you will come to view this as a credible vehicle for the gospel. This raised immunity to cheesy behaviour may take a while to develop but will eventually encompass adults doing nativity plays, reading Bible stories with funny voices and beginning every social event with an ice-breaker game.
2. Where you used to call seeing your friends for supper on a Friday – ‘hanging out’, you will now refer to it as ‘fellowship’. Likewise, you will begin ‘challenging each other’ rather than ‘ticking each other off’, ‘striving for authenticity’ and ‘being accountable’. In severe cases, you may also start to sign off texts with the acronym ‘PTL’ (Praise the Lord) or using Amen like it’s a punctuation mark.
3. While again, this change may be gradual, the ratio of hoodies to other types of clothes in your wardrobe will rise dramatically. Mission weeks, youth groups, summer projects and the classic summer retreat will each come with their own hooded sweater in a variety of colours. Fairly soon your begrudging acceptance of these comfy but shapeless friends will become an urge to build a collection. This may or may not be accompanied by an increased wearing of flip-flops.
4. If the idea of sleeping in a sweaty sandwich bag from yesterday’s pack-lunch (aka staying in a tent at a Christian festival) and having limited ability to shower may have seemed unappealing in your pre-Christian days, it will begin to seem like a great idea. Each summer will become punctuated with a few days of muddy, sweaty worship, and more-over they will be hotly anticipated.
5. You’ll find it almost impossible (particularly if you’re male) to avoid learning at least four guitar chords. This is just enough to get by should a rainbow-strapped guitar come your way while sitting round a camp fire at a Christian summer festival (see above). Never fear, once you’ve got G, D, Em and C down, you can easily feign musical competence in a BBQ setting.
6. Finally, even if don’t particularly like coffee, it is likely that fairly soon you’ll begin filling up loyalty cards like there’s no tomorrow. You’ll have a regular order, you’ll have a favourite coffee-shop and you’ll get to know your barista’s name (you will also find out that a coffee maker is, in fact, called a barista). Except perhaps if you’re male – then you just go for a lot of breakfasts.