If you have ever had doubts regarding your faith, rest assured you are not alone. So many of us, if we care to share, have had doubts at some time or another. The Bible contains many examples of people who doubted. Nice to know we are in good company with the likes of Abraham, John, Peter, Thomas and so many others!
Doubt is when people want to believe, but they just need some help to believe. A good example of this is Mark 9:14-27 when the father of a boy possessed with an evil spirit looks to Jesus to heal his son. When Jesus says "Everything is possible for him who believes," the father immediately exclaims, "I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief!" The father acknowledges that though he has faith, he struggles with some doubts. Did Jesus turn away from this man or his son? No. Jesus still honoured this man's faith and the boy was healed. The beautiful thing that this account shows, the thing that is so important for us to hear, is that the presence of doubt does not mean the absence of faith!
The issue is not that you doubt, the issue is what you do with that doubt.
So what do we do?
Here are 5 steps to deal with doubt.
- Admit. Admit you have doubts. It’s okay.
- Pray. Be specific about what they are and ask for God's help.
- Change. Change your thinking. Remember our faith isn’t based on how we feel but what we know! Feelings are fleeting, they can come and go like the wind. Faith is based in truth. Jesus made it clear as he prayed for His disciples, “ [Father] sanctify them by the truth; Your word is truth” (John 17:17).
- Read God’s Word. Fill your thoughts with truth - God's Word. Read the Bible not just when you worry or doubt but when things are going well too. That way when you doubt those scriptures will readily come to mind. There are other wonderful resources to read along with the Bible that can help answer some questions. You can find them at Faith Family Books. For example, check out Lee Strobel’s, The Case for Christ, and The Case for Faith. Our faith isn't a blind faith. We can know by evidence that Jesus is from God, that His teachings are true, and that He really is who He claimed to be!
- Repeat as necessary. This is not a one-time deal; it's a habit we need to build into our lives and as we do doubting will decrease!
Last week we began a mini series dealing with this important topic, DOUBT. Join us this Sunday for part two (and conclusion) of this series. There is always something exciting happening at Amberlea and this Sunday is no exception. You won't want to miss it. Please come and join us as we worship together. Don’t forget to invite a friend!