I have always liked to participate in public worship and to practice some of the spiritual disciplines. I did not experience a stormy conversion. God revealed himself to me, instead, like “a gentle whisper” (1 Kings 19:12).
I cannot remember a time when I did not believe that Gods exists, nor can I remember taking long walks through the valley of the shadow of doubts. I learned to love Him gradually, just like I learned to love my parents or my extended family. I am not the only one who knew Him in this way, nor do I pretend that this has spared me from questions, doubts, or bad choices.
Although I have not always answered Him with the same love and devotion, God was and still is “immeasurably more” (Ephesians 3:20) than I can ask for or imagine. Despite all this, faith to me is a choice, a lifestyle that I practice daily, “bound” by the power of His love, and by the abundant evidence with which He overwhelms me.
Here is why I believe in God
He offers me daily evidence of His presence and guidance. This is what has always amazed me about God. Although I haven’t seen His face, I have always known He goes before me. He has always left enough evidence for me to know it was Him—from small details that can be reduced to “our daily bread” to important, existential aspects (that belong to “Your Kingdom”).
He has always been a good and loving Father to me. I have been amazed by His greatness, His wisdom, power, and love for me ever since I was a child. If you ask me, all that is good and beautiful in my life is daily proof of His presence. This is why I choose to believe.
He allows me to ask questions. Many theologians believe that the first chronological book of the Bible is Job, or Moses’ book of questions. Even if in the first five books of the Bible Moses seems like a man of certainties, in the account of Job’s history he openly talks about another dimension of a relationship with God—the questions, the worries, the unknown. It is obviously Job’s fight, but it was certainly also Moses’ fight, and it is, I believe, the fight of each and every one of us.
I like to know that God values my reasoning and allows me to ask questions, and even to doubt what I see. I don’t have to ignore my worries—I can bring them before Him. I noticed that a lack of questions is not necessarily a good thing, and the blind attempt to argue our prejudices, like Job’s friends, is not appreciated by God in the same way as the earnest quest for the truth is. It is precisely because He always offers me the opportunity of unbelief that I choose, every day, to believe in Him.
He is always right. I’ve seen this in the Bible. Although I have been reading the Bible since I learned the alphabet, I am overwhelmed by its preciseness and authenticity every time. Both when it comes to moral principles, and historical or prophetic details, the Bible is true in its entirety. I am glad to discover that God has led the process of its writing and preservation with so much care in order to shield us from fruitless doubts or back-breaking moral dilemmas.
He has not given us the task to decide what or how much of the Bible is inspired by Him, but offered us complete and trustworthy Scriptures. The fact that I notice that God was and is right in life’s experiences, in archaeologists’ research, in scientific evidence, or in the way events flow, gives me courage and trust to choose to believe in Him and His Word daily.
He also loves others, not just me. This is one of the great things about God. He is not only preoccupied with my wellbeing, but loves those around me just as much. When He has only one thing to share between me and somebody else, He always gives it to the one who needs it most, not to the one who shouts the loudest. This means that He sometimes tells me “No”, or “It’s not for you”, or “Not this time”.
Time and honesty can confirm that He has always made the right call, both as far as I am concerned and for others. This is precisely why I believe, because His wisdom and mercy surpass all human intuition. I believe because His thoughts are much higher than the highest thought I can ever have.
He is quiet, and He hides. It may seem paradoxical, but one of the reasons why I choose to believe daily is because, at times, He is silent and hidden. I believe not just because He listens to my prayers but because He does not listen to them like I want Him to, and at times He even seems to not notice them. If He answered all prayers, it would mean that we would get to decide His agenda, that we would tell Him what to do, and how to do it.
His silence indirectly tells me that He knows better, and that I can count on Him. At the same time, I know He often hides not because He likes to watch me suffer, but because He is just enough to offer the possibility of choice, even to the one who wants to harm me. God wants to save them too. And precisely because I know that God can use suffering, despite its absurdity, for one’s good and for His own glory, I choose to believe.
I want you to believe too. I am so happy with what have I found that I would also like you to enjoy the peace and trust that faith brings to the life of the one who meets God. Even if the Bible speaks of a heavenly world, where God’s faithful children will be able to enjoy an eternal, painless life, even so, He is not oblivious or neglectful of our present happiness. When we taste from life’s beauty together with Him, it is impossible for us not to want others to taste that too.
Authentic religion is like a spring. I believe so that you can believe as well, so that others might believe too and so that, in this way, the world can be a more beautiful palace.
To me, faith is a privilege. It is not a burden or an inherited limitation. I do not only believe because I’ve seen others believe or because this is simply the tradition of my faith community. I believe because I cannot do otherwise, because I am delighted by His beauty and grace.
It’s not always easy to have faith, nor is it natural. I sometimes believe despite my inner tendencies and doubts that seem close and “desirable for gaining wisdom” (Genesis 3:6). I am glad that I can believe, that I chose to believe, and that I can continue to do so every day. For me, faith is the greatest miracle.
Adrian Neagu has been a Christian ever since he was a child. He believes God offers us evidence for faith, both when He reveals Himself in His children’s lives, and when He seems to be hiding from them.