Do you feel ashamed over wrestling with doubt about your faith? It’s easy to believe the lie that doubts are are symptoms of being bad Christians.
However, Ben Young says uncertainty can actually deepen our faith, if we handle it the right way. He shares some unwise ways for handling our doubts.
“I would say the unwise way to deal with doubt is to isolate yourself and to keep it silent. That’s the one surefire way your doubts will fester and potentially get out of control.”
“That’s what happened in my life and a lot of other people’s lives. They left the faith because they were afraid to tell anyone lest they be judged or kicked out of the club. They didn’t want their doubts to come out because there is a lot of shame associated with doubt.”
Ben says another unwise thing to do is to let your questions go unchecked.
“So if you are having questions about the veracity of Scripture, if you are having questions about whether or not Jesus Christ really existed, then don’t be lazy and allow that doubt to float around in your mind, do something about it. Get some research, find some books, and talk to some people who can help answer those particular questions.”
Doubt itself isn’t bad, it’s what you do with your doubt that makes or breaks you. Ben reminds us that in Scripture, it was common for followers of Jesus to wrestle with doubt.
“Even in Scripture there were people who struggled with intense doubt. Look at Job, Thomas, and John the Baptist. All of those men doubted deeply, but here is what they did. They doubted in community. Job doubted aloud in community to his idiotic friends, but at least he didn’t keep it inside. Thomas doubted repeatedly with his fellow disciples. John the Baptist when he was in prison doubted out loud to his disciples and even took his doubts to Jesus Himself.”
Most, if not all, Christians will have doubts at some point in their lives. We must avoid ignoring these doubts and instead share them with those we trust.
Ben Young is a teaching pastor at Second Baptist Church in Houston. He is also an adjunct professor at Houston Theological Seminary, and the author of seven books, including Devotions For Dating Couples: Building A Foundation For Spiritual Intimacy and Why Mike's Not A Christian: Honest Questions About Evolution, Relativism, Hypocrisy, and More..