My faith seems absurd to others—even to some other Christians. My ridiculous faith is the basis for my expectation of miraculous resolution to seemingly impossible situations.
I didn’t just wake up one day to have a ridiculous level of faith. It GREW from a tiny seed into an entire garden that permeates my every area of my life. My faith is no longer in a little box in a section of my heart. It now is integrated into every thought, word, and action.
Some say that my faith is a gift from God—as though anyone, anywhere couldn’t also have the same level of faith. It seems like an excuse to me to write off ridiculous faith as something that only a select few get to have. They may be right, I don’t know. I don’t have all the answers. But what I do know is that my faith has grown incrementally with every answered prayer.
No, every prayer isn’t answered the way I would like it to be. But in many cases, the answers have been much better than what I was asking for. To give you a sense of what I’m talking about, consider that as a child, I wanted a pair of shoes that didn’t have holes in the bottom or in the toes. It was uncomfortable to have cold, wet feet in school all day because of worn out shoes that had walked through rain and mud to get to school. It was embarrassing to have my toes stick out of the holes that were cut in the end of cheap canvas shoes to accommodate my growing feet. I wanted nothing more than to find a pair of usable shoes at the county dump. There were many times that we didn’t find any. But what God did eventually provide for me is a closet full of beautiful shoes, including a pair of those ridiculously expensive shoes with the red soles that were a very extravagant gift from my husband!
When I was that little girl picking through the disgusting, smelly, dirty county dump hoping for a pair of shoes that were used and ill-fitting, it would have been absurd for me to think that I could ever have what I now enjoy. Back then I wasn’t even aware that there were people who had more than one pair of shoes. So the thought of having multiple pairs of shoes in different colors and styles, some for pants, some for skirts, some dressy, some casual, etc., would never have crossed my mind. But God knew. He didn’t want to give me an old, dirty, used pair of shoes. He wanted to give me a closet full of beautiful new shoes in exactly my size. He wanted to give me blessings I didn’t even know to ask for.
It probably sounds ridiculous to some people that I should use this as an example of why I have ridiculous faith now. But this one story is just a tiny example of the reason for my faith. I’ve seen friends healed of terminal cancer, I’ve seen my husband healed from an infection that was diagnosed as “incurable.” I’ve seen my daughter delivered from addiction to drugs, cigarettes, and debilitating depression. I’ve been healed of cancer, migraine headaches, and 17 years of chronic neck pain that was diagnosed as “manageable,” not curable. I’ve gone from abandoned, unwanted and unloved, to being chosen and loved by some of the best people in the world. I went from being homeless and hungry to living in a paid-for house overlooking the ocean complete with a pantry full of food!
Through the many years since I decided to believe that Jesus is the Only Son Of God (yes, it was simply a decision that I made without any emotional experience or fanfare), my faith has grown as though ascending a set of stairs. I’ve experienced so many beautifully answered prayers, that it’s no longer a choice that I’ve made to believe. My faith is now a fully integrated aspect of who I am. No one can tell me that God isn’t real or that Jesus isn’t Who He said He is. It would be like someone telling me that Newport Beach, CA doesn’t exist. I KNOW that it does because I live there! I KNOW that God exists, that He loves us beyond our capability to understand, and that He longs to bless us with much more than we know to ask for because I live with Him and His Love.
I wish that everyone had this level of faith. But each of us gets to make our own choices. My faith may have been a gift from God, but I am convinced that every one of us can have the same gift of ridiculous faith if only we choose to ask for it and expect to receive it. Ridiculous faith that connects with the immeasurable Love of God is what lifts us up out of painful circumstances to find and fulfill our own unique success.
Rhonda Sciortino, author of The Prayer That Covers It All, was raised by atheists, introduced to Jesus by a foster parent when she was a child. Rhonda’s faith journey was influenced by a faith-filled high teacher, the Lutheran pastor who baptized her, a Rabbi who answered her myriad questions, the Baptist minister who invited her to a public profession of faith, the Pentecostal youth pastor whose prayers resulted in miraculous healing, the Church of Christ pastor who helped launch her career, the Norbertine Priest who encouraged her, her Assemblies of God friends who cheer her on, and myriad friends from various denominations and non-denominational churches all over the US. Rhonda is a fully yielded believer in Christ who focuses on the Words of Jesus.