Doubting, You?

“And when they saw him they worshiped him, but some doubted.”

Matthew 28:17

“And he said to them, “Why are you troubled, and why do doubts arise in your hearts?”

Luke 24:38

You believe that God is one; you do well. Even the demons believe—and shudder!”

James 2:19

“but these are written so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name.”

John 20:31

Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned.

Mark 16:16

“And many believed in him there.”

John 10:42

Dear ones, do you struggle with doubt?  Who doesn’t?  Even those men whom Jesus was training personally had times of doubt.  Doubt, I think, is where our faith wrestles with our perceptions.  In order for faith to grow, it must be put to the test; pushed, pulled, strained, even have the wind knocked from us.

I love the book of James.  It seems, at first glance to be a harsh epistle, sort of a downer as letters go; but in reality, it is a great book of encouragement!  “Count it all joy!”  That’s a good thing, right?  “[W]hen you meet trials of various kinds.”  What?  Why on earth would we rejoice over trials?  “[F]or you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness.  And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing”  (James 1:2-4).  {light bulb!} 

Don’t look at trials as bad, but as an opportunity to grow in faith, in Christ, and on your way to being “complete and lacking in nothing.”  I want to encourage you to read slowly and meditatively through the book of James this week.  Write down the trials, big and small, you are facing right now.  Then as you read, write down every phrase that encourages you in overcoming those trials.   Use these words from James to rise above the trials that knock you down or discourage you.  I think Rocky once said that it is not how many times you get knocked down, but how many times you get up.

[Keep] On the Journey,