“…And Jesus said to him, “‘If you can’! All things are possible for one who believes.” Immediately the father of the child cried out and said, “I believe; help my unbelief!”’
It’s a struggle for most people to believe that Christianity can radically transform one’s character and values, but much easier to raise doubts. Consequently, instead of fervently seeking truth, we find ourselves deviating or even fending off the truth. We often get to the point where we subconsciously put up smoke screens to mask deep-seated motivations about some aspects of our well-being. If our struggles
are the bedrock for doubts then our wellness is only as stable as the doubts we’ve overcome.
For many Christians, merely having doubts or thoughtful questions can be scary. We wonder whether our questions disqualify us from being followers of Jesus Christ. We feel insecure because we’re not sure whether it’s permissible to express our uncertainty about God, Jesus or the Bible. So we keep our questions to ourselves unanswered as they grow, fester and loom until they eventually choke our faith. I have encountered a christian who said, “I hate church because God doesn’t live up to the claims in the Bible. I’ve believed, studied the Bible, prayed and yet have no joy or any answers…” The tone underneath this disappoint was ‘what’s wrong with God that he won’t give me what I want.’ In other words, Christians believe having thought provoking faith questions is evidence for absence of faith. However, on the contrary, they are the lace in the fabric of strong faith.
Is there a process for resolving doubts when they arise and not be inexorably drowned in melancholy, uncertainty, and hopelessness? According to Lynn Anderson¹, It makes a difference what kind of doubter you are. Rebellious doubters have the attitude, “I am not going to let someone in my life do my thinking.” It’s like a son or daughter rebelling against God because his parents are believers. Then, there are people whose doubts stem from intellectual and personal wounds, “How can faith be so important to God and yet require one to have an IQ of 197 to begin to understand it?” If the challenges and adversities of life don’t cause us to contemplatively hesitate (doubt), then we’ve become like God. If it causes us to think twice, then we’re still on the journey. Everyone is in route!
God isn’t moved by our doubts or positivity. He is moved by our choice; either to reject him or accept his sovereignty.
¹ Anderson, L. (2000). If I really believe, why do I have these doubts? (2d ed.). West Monroe, LA: Howard Pub. Co.