Former Atheist Academic Who Rejected God and Believed ‘Smart People Don’t Become Christians’ Reveals What Changed Her Mind Entirely
by Billy Hallowell
As an atheist Dr. Holly Ordway had always felt like she wasn’t quite “God’s type” — that is, until she says she began deeply questioning the ins and outs of the Christian faith.
In her autobiography, “Not God’s Type: An Atheist Academic Lays Down Her Arms,” Ordway, who directs the Master of Arts in Apologetics Masters program at Houston Baptist University, tackles how she transitioned from an atheist who wasn’t interested in the Almighty to a fervent Christian.
“The title [of the book] reflects pretty much my attitude before I was a Christian,” Ordway recently told TheBlaze. “If I even gave any thought to whether God existed, I thought, ‘It’s not for me … it’s fine for other people, they like that sort of thing.’ I was very much not God’s type.”
As an English professor who looked more at the Bible as a piece of ancient literature than anything to be literally revered or followed, she admitted to once believing that “smart people don’t become Christians.”
“It was more the absence of positive evidence and the general cultural attitude,” Ordway said of her belief that intelligent individuals couldn’t possibly embrace biblical teaching.
It’s a view she now fully repudiates — and her journey to that conclusion is a fascinating one.
Growing up in a nominally Christian home which she described as unreligious, Ordway said that she ended up going off to college, where she embraced the “pervasive assumption that secularism was simply true — that naturalism, evolution — all that explained everything.”
“Faith was a nice thing people did as a hobby or cultural thing,” she recalled believing at the time.
Ordway said it took about 10 years before she began asking the questions that led her out of atheism and into the Christian realm.
Having read Christian writers like J. R. R. Tolkien and C.S. Lewis as a child and during her college years, she said that the writings stuck with her and made an impact despite her atheistic worldview.
When Ordway eventually moved to California to take a teaching job, she began encountering other Christian poets and writers, which she said started getting her to think a bit deeper about the theological themes these individuals addressed in their work.
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