The daughter of Vice President Mike Pence has opened up about her personal faith journey and admitted she went through seasons of profound doubt. Charlotte Pence, 25, released her new book, “Where You Go: Life Lessons From My Father” this week, in which she details many of the words of wisdom bestowed upon her by her politician father.
It was during a year abroad studying in Oxford back in 2015 that Pence found her faith in God dwindling. In an interview with The Christian Post, Pence admitted that she “turned away from God” and had “not wanted anything to do with religion” at the time.
“I was interested in atheism for a while,” she admitted, before qualifying that she “wasn’t as interested in Christianity,” but that she felt like God was pursuing her the whole time. Writing about this time in her new book, Pence said she “stopped going to church and reading [her] Bible,” and instead chose to spend “much of the year” delving into atheist philosophy.
However, as she continued to dive head-first into atheist thought, she began to realize that there was no light to be found there.
“I believed I didn’t need him but as the year went on, I felt increasingly hopeless,” Pence wrote. “I think I still believed in God, but I wanted to try living without the burden of religious ideas. I thought my questions would go away or be answered. I thought maybe I would no longer care and I would be able to live in an agnostic way. Maybe a part of me even wished I could, but atheism didn’t answer any questions I had.”
— Charlotte Rose Pence (@charlipence) August 16, 2018
Amazingly, though her parents are devout followers of Jesus and wanted to see her firm in the faith, Pence said that both of them were “very understanding” when she expressed her spiritual struggles.
“I know that they have always shown me just what an example of unconditional love really looks like,” Pence continued. “They were always willing and open to talk about any questions I had about their faith. They were definitely present in my life at that time. Ultimately, my faith had to just become my own and once it did, there was really no going back for me.”
“My dad has just always really shown me how to just treat people with grace and so I kind of try to do that in my own life”: Charlotte Pence, the daughter of Vice President Mike Pence, discusses her faith, family and a new life in the political spotlight pic.twitter.com/iowMxBTN5U
— CNN (@CNN) October 17, 2018
Though Pence noted Christian authors such as Oxford apologist Alistair McGrath helping her come back to the faith, she said that it was during a holiday break in Israel that she truly “became a Christian.” Speaking of that time, Charlotte said that it was an incredible experience to know her faith had “solidified.”
“I had always had faith, but it became my own there and I have never really turned back since coming into this realization,” she wrote.
As she flew back to England, Pence talked to God in what became a very significant moment in her life.
“I was on a plane, listening to a religious song, and I began to cry,” she explained. “In that moment, I came home to my Savior, to my friend. I understood I needed Him and He took me back with open arms. This incredible feeling of acceptance and renewal is one I can not put into words, I cannot recreate, I cannot justify. It just is. It is a free gift, and one I cannot live without. And I have never been more sure of anything.”
(H/T: The Christian Post)