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Dealing with Doubt

Doubting or investigating the truth isn't necessarily a sin and isn't the opposite of faith. Rather, it may be an element of faith.  It means you are thinking some things through and grappling with the issues. It means you are trying to process certain events or information, wondering how it all fits in with life as you understand it.

In John 20, we read the story of Thomas and Jesus. Thomas is known as a doubter. But in reality, Thomas is a brave, deep-thinking disciple of Jesus.  Yes, he had questions, but he also had a desire to believe. When he saw Jesus for who He really is, his big questions turned to great faith!

When the other disciples saw Jesus after the resurrection, Thomas wasn't with them and he said that He would only believe if he saw Jesus' scars, touched His hands and put his hands in Jesus' side.  A week later, Jesus appeared to Thomas, and other disciples, and proved to Thomas that He is alive.  Thomas' response, "My Lord, My God!" showed that Thomas' doubts quickly became confident faith and  Jesus affirmed that faith. Thomas saw then believed. Jesus then said that you and I are blessed when we believe even though we haven't seen. Some say that seeing is believing, but by faith believing is seeing.

Dealing with Doubt

We won't see and touch Jesus as Thomas did, but we can overcome doubt and live by faith just like he did.  So, what do we do when we have doubts, questions, or concerns?  

  1. Don't let your doubt become an excuse to drift. Thomas was with the disciples for a full week while they were believing and he was doubting. Instead of drifting, take a step deeper into community and pay attention to what you have and are learning. (Hebrews 2:1)

  2. Seek true sources of truth.  In a day and age when everyone can publish their thoughts and opinions, make sure you are testing sources. We aren't the first people to ask deep questions and people smarter than us have answered these questions.  I point you to your pastor to talk through things. We are here for you and welcome faith-forming conversations. You can also do an online investigation with sites such as Got Questions and Reasonable Faith.

  3. Don't let your doubt define you.  Instead, do the counterintuitive step of asking the Lord to grow your faith even as you ask questions. You can walk through the foyer of doubt into the sanctuary of faith. So, be like Thomas, and desire faith. Desire to see Jesus for who He is and He will show Himself to you through your community, through your investigation, and through your desire to know Him.
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