I'll give you a substantive Lutheran response. Theologically speaking, you were not saved when you asked Jesus into your heart. Rather, you were saved close to 2000 years ago outside a hill in Jerusalem.
What happened in your life, as described in your above testimony, is that you had a renewal experience where the Holy Spirit brought you into a point of stirring up saving faith in what Jesus did on the cross by dying for your sins. “No one can say Jesus is Lord, expect by the Holy Spirit.”
Your initial child Christening was working a time bomb effect, bringing you to Jesus as Lord of your life. You felt being saved when the Holy Spirit did a work of inner healing in your life and impressed upon you, through the faith worked in you, the promise of eternal life (i.e. knowledge, assent & trust).
Asking Jesus to come into your life is an aspect of sanctification & not justification.
The longer Lutheran response is this. Christening is the old European way of describing Baptism. Just as a ship is christened, so in Baptism, followers of Jesus are blessed and than prayed for as they grow in age and embark on a new voyage in life.
All authority in heaven and earth has been given to me. Go therefore
and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the
Father, and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to
obey everything that I have commanded you. And remember, I am with you
always, to the end of the age. (Matthew 28:19)
Baptism is the most powerful form of dedication described in the Bible; only it is not done in a “dry” style without water, but with the command and promise of God’s grace working faith in the hearts of his children. From a Biblical point of view, the rite of Baptism is not so much a time in which we dedicate ourselves to God, but where he dedicates to give himself powerfully to us in an appointed manner.
In the rite of Baptism God specifically promises to pour out his grace into (eis = motion towards, more than in reference to) forgiveness and the gift of his Spirit. Acts 2:38 states:
And Peter said to them, Repent, and let each of you be baptized in the
name of Jesus Christ for (i.e. into) the forgiveness of your sins; and you shall
receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. For the promise is for you and
your children, and for all who are far off, as many as the Lord our
God shall call to Himself. (Acts 2:38-39).
In the book of Acts we hear how whole households were baptized. The early church understood this as including little children. For example, shortly after the New Testament was completed, Hippolytus (170-236 A.D.) writes:
And first baptize the little ones; and if they can speak for
themselves, they shall do so; if not, their parents or other relatives
shall speak for them.
God’s grace precedes our response and Baptism illustrates this truth. While little child do not have the ability to articulate repentance, the very word “repent” implies turning towards God. The power of God working faith is what enables us to turn towards God.
For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this not
from yourselves, it is the gift of God— not by works, so that no one
can boast. (Ephesians 2:8-9)
We know that little children can turn toward God through the power of Holy Spirit as King David states in Psalm 22:9:
But You are He who took Me out of the womb; You made Me trust while on
My mother’s breasts.
We also read in the Luke 1:15 a prophecy about how John the Baptist was “filled with the Holy Spirit, even from his mother’s womb.”
Baptism is a visible call from Jesus in which he says, “Come follow me.” It is a covenant contract with God, much like a pre-arranged marriage in a foreign land. The difference is that with God we can’t go wrong in establishing relationships. We read in the Bible:
Then some children were brought to Him so that He might lay His hands
on them and pray; and the disciples rebuked them. But Jesus said, "Let
the children alone, and do not hinder them from coming to Me; for the
kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these. (Matthew 19:13-14).
Baptism promises and conveys a full spectrum of gifts and graces from God. That is why Martin Luther writes in his Large Catechism:
Baptism promises and brings - victory over death and the devil,
forgiveness of sin, God's grace, the entire Christ, and the Holy
Spirit with his gifts.
Unpacking what Luther writes about in his Large Catechism on the work of the Holy Spirit is an important aspect of understanding his sacramental theology. What is important to understand is that the gift of the Spirit is not time bound to the rite of Baptism itself; as we can never actually possess the Holy Spirit, it is a lifetime gift that needs to be continually received by faith in the context of the receptivity of prayer. In John 1:17 it states:
From his fullness we have all received, grace upon grace.
In the Lutheran Confessions FC SD XI, 71-72 the passage in Luke 11:11-13 (prayer for the Holy Spirit) is connected to sacramental Baptism:
...in order that we may attain this, persevere in it, and remain
steadfast, we should implore God for His grace, which He has promised
us in Holy Baptism, and, no doubt, He will impart it to us according
to His promise, as He has said, Luke 11:11ff : If a son shall ask
bread of any of you that is a father, will he give him a stone? Or if
he ask a fish, will he for a fish give him a serpent? Or if he shall
ask an egg, will he offer him a scorpion? If ye, then, being evil,
know how to give good gifts unto your children, how much more shall
your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask Him!
Each day God calls us to appropriate or actualize the promise of Baptism and pray to be forgiven and to be filled (i.e. baptized) with the Holy Spirit in a fresh way. For those baptized as children, the promise of Baptism can be actualized later in life through times of re-consecration. This may even involve dramatic spiritual awakening experiences with God. Special rites in the church like Confirmation and Weddings are also times in which we may experience the Holy Spirit coming upon us with power and grace to bless relationships and our walk of faith.
In the Lutheran Confessions it states:
A small spark or longing for divine grace...is the beginning of true
godliness...true faith.” (FC, SD, II, 13-14)
There is also an ongoing actualization of baptismal grace through a prayerful reception of Christ through the external Word in the heart. Martin Luther writes about this in his Galatians Commentary:
…faith takes hold of Christ…it takes hold of Christ in such a way that
Christ is the object of faith, or rather not the object but, so to
speak, the One who is present in the faith itself (in ipsa fide
Christus adest)…Therefore faith justifies because it takes hold of
and possesses this treasure, the present Christ…There the Christ who
is grasped by faith and who lives in the heart (in corde habitans
Christus) is the true Christian righteousness, on account of which
God counts us righteous and grants us eternal life.
In the Lutheran Confessions it also states:
The faith that justifies, however, is no mere historical knowledge,
but the firm acceptance of God’s offer promising forgiveness of sins
and justification. To avoid the impression that it is merely
knowledge, we add that to have faith means to want and to accept the
promised offer of forgiveness of sins and justification.” (Apology to
the Augsburg Confession, IV)
The Lutheran theologian Martin Chemnitz also writes:
…justifying faith apprehends all those things not as simple history,
nor only insofar as they are in themselves true in general, but in
such a way that it specifically includes the person of the believer in
that promise of grace, so that each believer apprehends and receives
Christ in the Word and Sacraments with true confidence of the heart as
given personally to him, and applies them to him individually.
(Chemnitz, Ministry, Word and Sacraments)
The Luther theologian, Francis Pieper, quotes Chemnitz in an affirmative manner in how he describes justifying faith is concerned with its object:
not in cold calculation, nor with a general, superficial assent, but in such a
manner that it appreciates, admires, desires, seeks, grasps, receives,
embraces, its object, Christ. (Francis Pieper, Christian Dogmatics,
Vol 2, p. 434)
During the liturgy of Advent & Christmas we pray, again and again,
to the Father to send his Son, as though the Son had not yet become
incarnate. This is a matter of Christ being received into the heart. For example, Fr. Phillips Brooks, an Anglican, wrote a prayer that was turned into a hymn. The last verse reads:
- O holy Child of Bethlehem,
Descend to us, we pray; Cast out our sin, and enter in,
Be born in us to-day. We hear the Christmas angels
The great glad tidings tell; O come to us, abide with us,
Our Lord Emmanuel.