Actress Melissa Joan Hart talks faith, overcoming doubt in God
Actress Melissa Joan Hart began talking publicly about her Christian faith and the impact it's having on her adult life after starring in the “God’s Not Dead” sequel.
Hart was a guest on Paula Faris' "Journeys of Faith" podcast on Wednesday where she revealed that she's Presbyterian but was raised Catholic.
“The town I grew up in Long Island was a very Catholic town,” said Hart, who's best known for her role on the ‘90s series “Sabrina the Teenage Witch.”
“But I was always very curious and I just felt like I didn't really connect in church. I tried, I tried to read the Bible by myself,” Hart explained. After trying to read the book of Revelation as a teenager and not understanding it, she said she continued “searching.”
“I always had faith in Jesus as my Savior and that God was out there looking out for me, and was always very faithful in prayer,” she continued. “I was always trying to read the Bible and trying to figure out how can I learn more.”
After getting married and thinking about starting a family, she knew she had to lock down a church and solidify her faith. Hart and her husband, Mark Wilkerson, then settled at a Presbyterian church.
She said her faith has been a continual “growth” with Jesus. Hart said she believes in the golden rule and sharing with others that Jesus is Lord. However, the actress admitted that she does fight uncertainty.
“Without doubt we don’t explore,” Hart maintained. “When I have these big questions like, ‘Was Jesus a cool dude?' Or 'Was He the son of God?’... ‘Why would God care about my little life when He has this whole Earth and universe?’ Then I close my eyes and tap into the Holy Spirit and let Him speak to me. And you feel that warmth and you feel that change. And all of sudden you can just go off of that blind faith. Of course I believe,” the 42-year-old declared.
Throughout the interview, Hart also addressed some of the difficult times she's had to endure. “I feel like every time something bad has happened, I’ve come out of it because of my faith,” she told Faris. “It’s for a purpose He has. It’s His will be done.”
The New York native went on to say that her faith has brought her “calm and peace” which she never had as an adolescent.
“I feel like, right now, I might be just as anxiety-ridden over certain things as I was as an angsty teenager. But now I have this understanding of it’s gonna be OK and this calm and peace that people don’t have if they don’t have faith,” Hart declared.
“Especially as I’ve gotten older and studied more of the Bible, I don’t take everything so seriously as I used to; it’s not life or death," said Hart, adding that she now looks at devastating moments in life differently.
“God has a reason for everything. Without my grandmother passing away when I was 12 years old, and without my friend dying at 32, and without some of the struggles that I’ve gone through in my life, I wouldn’t be the person I am today,” she added.
Hart did not reprise her role as a witch for the spinoff “Sabrina the Teenage Witch” series that's now on Netflix, but she does have a new series coming soon to Netflix called “No Good Nick.”
Even though she'll be starring in mainstream films and TV shows, Hart said she'll continue speaking about her faith despite its unpopularity in her industry. "You know, it can be a little scary sometimes to say anything. These days, it's a talent to be politically correct," she told Fox 411 in an interview in 2016. "I find that as long as I don't care what other people think and I stand by my values, it doesn't matter what other people say."
"People are going to argue with me no matter if I say something controversial or not," she insisted. "I'm going to ignore them because I have every right to say what I want to say and put out there what I feel. I don't judge others and I'm definitely not trying to hurt anyone's feelings."