Much thanks to Renae Loring, Discovery’s own gifted Children’s Pastor for this post.
Is it okay to doubt God’s existence? Does it mean I don’t get it?
In admitting to doubting God’s existence, you are welcomed into the ranks of millions – people from every walk of life. Even those you might least expect, missionaries, pastors, & Jesus’ disciples wrestled with doubting God. Doubt is a part of the journey.
In my own walk with Christ, doubt has been a frequent companion. At times it has lingered for a long stretch of time and other times my faith and doubt are more like a ping pong match, constantly volleying back and forth. God beckons me and my doubt to come to Him. He is not afraid of my doubt. We have somehow gotten the wrong idea about God; thinking that He can’t handle our doubts or will reject us because of them.
In Philip Yancey’s book, Reaching for the Invisible God, he says, “Doubt is the skeleton in the closet of faith, and I know no better way to treat a skeleton than to bring it into the open and expose it for what it is: not something to hide or fear, but a hard structure on which living tissue may grow. Pg 41”
In the Psalms you will find cries to God that echo doubt. Like a child when he puts his fingers in his ears, shutting out the sounds he doesn’t want to hear, screaming, “God is real. God is real.” Not for those around him, but to convince his own soul that God is real and present.
The book of Job details Job’s own wrestling with doubt with God. The gospels tell of Thomas’ unbelief in John 20:24-28, “Unless I see. . . I will not believe.” John the Baptist who proclaimed the coming of Christ, while in jail, sends friends to Jesus to ask, “Are you the one who was to come, or should we expect someone else?” In each case, God met the person who brought him their doubt. He didn’t ridicule them or cast them away.
The best way to handle our doubts is to bring them to the light of God. Put them before him and wrestle it out there. My prayer in doubt is the same as the father in Mark 9 begging for healing for his son, “I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief.”
Reaching for the Invisible God by Philip Yancey