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Strange Christian Beliefs: Do You Dare Believe?

Polymer clay sculpture of a seated woman in surrendered prayer.
Ruth, Mixed Media, Sara Joseph SOLD

Christian beliefs can be perplexing, wouldn't you agree?

A visit to a church can be a confounding experience for someone who knows nothing about Christianity!

People joyfully (or solemnly, depending on the church you visit) sing songs about blood and death. The sermon follows with content foreign to modern life—stories about reapers and sowers, giants and wars, revelation and lamentations…

The alien language is confusing, peppered with words like "covetousness, redemption, sanctification, justification, and resurrection…."

So...what makes Christianity deeply compelling and radically different from any other religion?

For me, it was something that turned my life inside out and affected me so deeply that I had a hard time wrapping my mind around it.


The challenge that this truth could be tested fascinated me!

Relief sculpture of a woman bowing in surrender before God
Ruth, Mixed Media, Detail 1, Sara Joseph

Decades ago some new friends talked about God as if He was someone they had just spoken to! I vividly remember my astonishment.

Until then, God was a remote entity to whom one prayed grand and vague prayers about ending poverty, healing sick people everywhere...—prayers for which no one ever really expected an answer. I would comfort myself that at least I'd voiced a great human concern to whoever was out there listening—but had no expectation of anything more than that!

Oil painting of a woman in profile.
Hearken, Oil on Canvas, Sara Joseph

These new friends, however, spoke in a manner that implied an almost face-to-face conversation with God—speaking to and hearing back from Him!

While tempted to dismiss them as delusional, I was forced to acknowledge the fact that there was little else about them that appeared crazy!

When they invited me to my first prayer meeting, I listened in envious curiosity as they brought every little concern to God, trusting in His interest by expecting a response!

They spoke as if He was physically present, sitting in one of the unoccupied chairs, sharing the same space that we were in.

This was the best kind of friend to have, I thought longingly—one who patiently listened to every silly fear, seemed to care about their kindergartner's safety on a field trip, and was okay with their apology for less than courteous behavior earlier in the day.

The next time, I listened in amazement as they gathered together to thank God for prayers answered, just as they had prayed.! This happened way too often to be mere coincidence.

So of all the strange Christian beliefs, this one tops my list of "FANTASTIC–you-simply-must-try-it!"

Abstract Detail of a mixed media artwork, showing Hebrew and English writing.
Ruth, Detail 2, Mixed Media, Sara Joseph

You can engage in a conversation with God, because no matter who you are, or what you’ve done, He loves you.

Conversation with Him is like no other, because of who He is. Any interaction changes you from the inside out.

If you're listening for an audible voice, you may be disappointed. He does not routinely speak in an audible voice, although He has on a few occasions in history, so I dare not rule it out entirely. Not hearing Him audibly does not mean that He is not speaking.

He communes Spirit to spirit in non verbal conversations, authenticated by circumstantial answers, as my friends vividly demonstrated.

Once begun in sincerity and faith, these intimate conversations change circumstances in sudden and dramatic ways. Life then becomes a continual exercise of listening, hearing and doing what He tells you, and then watching in amazement as impossibilities become commonplace!

Quickly inspired, I tried some of my own timid conversations and had astounding results. God not only answered, but also guided me to the Bible. In its pages, I got to know His nature, making my conversations even bolder.

Initially I brushed off the changing circumstances in my life as simply co-incidence. But when the frequency and the improbability of all that ensued began screaming at me, I was force to acknowledge that God was, indeed, answering my prayers!

We were having a conversation—the God of the Universe and I!

That was decades ago! Since then my conversations have only grown deeper and richer and now include the realm of art.

No great theology is required to jump right in, except simplicity of heart, like that of an eager child. Besides that, develop sensitivity for perceiving the confluence of circumstances and the conversation you just had.

Once, discouraged about the slow sales of my work from one of the galleries, I asked Him why I should persist in this venue. Would it not be better to search for greener pastures?

I received my answer swiftly. Before the day was out, I sold a work entitled ‘The Burnt Offering’. In a flash I understood. I had numerous paintings and sculptures at the gallery, but this was created as an offering of myself to Him!

I had pledged to be guided by His will and not mine! I was to stay. I was to practice what I had resolved to do while creating the work—to present myself as a burnt offering to be wholly consumed, submitted only to His will, not other circumstances. He was working patience in me, while assuring me of His partnership and presence. Coincidence? Conclusions drawn from my own mind? No, I have learned better.

Such conversations with Him have marked my life for decades now. I have endured and persisted longer than I would ever have on my own. He's never led me astray, nor caused me harm. I chatter away constantly now, and cherish my times of hearing back—you can too!

The God who created you, is eager for you to talk to Him, as if He were your dearest friend.

Tell Him about your aspirations, your sadness, your regrets, your hopes your dreams – things you’ve never told another soul. Ask Him for direction, guidance, and lessons on how to grow… Then watch in eager expectation, as He swiftly works to assure you that He truly cares like no one else ever can, or ever will.


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