I have yet another small post of half-formed thoughts. I very much enjoyed the most recent episode where you all covered a perspective on Anglo-Saxon conversion to Christianity. Full disclosure: I am neither an historian nor an academic.
That being said, I found the proposal that the conversion of kingdoms was related to politicians/leaders making changes for expediency quite resonant for me when I think about history more broadly. There are numerous possible examples of political entities aligning themselves with religious leaders or movements to gain power (thinking the modern kingdom of Saudi Arabia, The Holy Roman Empire, modern political parties who pull support from religious movements). It's almost a wonder to me that this wasn't the baseline assumption: Kings don't convert and then change their peoples beliefs (at least not in every instance). Rather, savvy leaders sniff out bases of power and align themselves accordingly. And THEN impose those rules/morals on their people in turn.