Here is an excerpt from an interview of author Stephen Smallman conducted by Justin Taylor concerning Smallman's book Spiritual Birthline: Understanding How We Experience the New Birth. You can find the rest of the interview here.
Is spiritual birth an event or a process? What difference does the answer make to our understanding of conversion?
Spiritual birth is essentially a process, during which there may be an event or many events when the Lord becomes real to us. I think the insight that coming to Christ is really a process gives people new appreciation of the work of God in their lives over a lot longer period of time than they may have considered before. It also serves to give people much more patience as they work with others who they see being drawn to Christ.