Uncertainty can be nerve-racking. As humans, we have a tendency to want to be in control and know as much as we can at all times - and when we can’t, we find ourselves stuck in cycles of questions and doubts. The concept of faith is believing in what we can’t always see, but that doesn’t mean we’re supposed to go through life never asking hard questions or exploring the doubts we feel when it comes to trusting Jesus.
If you find yourself asking hard questions about faith or experiencing doubts, first of all, know that is completely normal. And second of all, know that it’s not a bad thing. In this article we’ll explore 3 encouraging truths when it comes to questioning your faith or having doubts as a follower of Jesus.
1. Questioning your faith is not the same as ditching your faith
We spend the first twenty years or so of life learning and growing - and that doesn’t end when we graduate or move into the workforce. As humans, we’re always looking for ways to grow and discover. Part of that process means we’re constantly asking questions about ourselves, and about our faith and relationship with God, as we mature. Just because you’re asking questions doesn't mean you’re giving up on faith - in fact, it can be a major part of growing your faith and trust in Jesus even deeper.
2. Giving up on your faith is not the same as giving up on the faith
You don’t have the same faith now as you had when you were 5 years old. 5-year-old faith is great when you’re 5, but it would be disappointing for someone your age. As we get older, we grow into more mature faith, and asking questions that you didn’t feel the need to ask before is exactly what you should be doing. Too often followers of Jesus who have grown up in the faith or who have lived in it for a long time ignore good questions and just recite what they know, going through the motions - and that creates a church full of adults with 5-year-old faith. When you’re ready to dive deeper into your faith, you may have to give up the shallowness of your old faith in favor of a deeper, richer faith and relationship with God that enables you to experience more of what it means to fully follow Jesus. You can welcome that change and let go of superficial understandings of God - and that’s an exciting and encouraging place to be.
3. Just because it’s hard, it doesn’t mean God isn’t in it
Wrestling with your faith is hard. It may feel like you’re the only one asking the questions that you have. You might feel abandoned because the answers that used to satisfy you now annoy you. But the truth is that going deeper into God’s Word and into your faith isn’t meant to be easy when it’s real. God isn’t interested in comfort and catchy phrases - he works through difficulty, in the hard times and in the good ones. Don’t assume that because what you’re experiencing now feels tough in regards to your faith, that God isn’t in it. Push through the difficulty with a desire to see God even clearer on the other side. That is when your faith will begin to grow the most.
Searching and questioning and doubting can be an invitation to seek God - and seeking is one of the best ways to deepen your faith. Intentionally seeking God doesn’t have to be a big or intimidating process - in fact, you can intentionally seek God in the following ways:
- Ask Jesus to help (Mark 9.21-24)
- Admit what you don’t know (Isaiah 55)
- Remember what you do know (Ephesians 2.1-10)
- Look for Answers (John 20.24-29)
- Keep Asking Questions (Judges 6.36-40)
And the best news is that when you are truly seeking, he promises that you will find him. Below are just a few verses that you can cling to when you’re seeking and searching:
You will find him if you seek him with all your heart and all your soul. - Deuteronomy 4.29
Those who seek me find me. - Proverbs 8.17
You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all of your heart. - Jeremiah 29.13
Ask and it will be given to you; Seek and you will find; Knock and the door will be opened to you. - Matthew 7.7
If you truly want to start seeking, sign up for a Group around exploring faith - doubting can be lonely, but seeking is done best in a group of people who are in a similar spot.
If you do have questions or doubts and you’re not sure where to turn or where to start, we would simply love to talk with you. Start the conversation by contacting us - no matter what you’re thinking or feeling, what you’re questioning, or what doubts you’re having, we’re here to help.