Doubting your doubts

I’ve recently discovered the art of doubting your doubts.  What does it mean to doubt your doubts?  Well, that’s an interesting question.  It’s one I would have asked not too long ago. 

A Common Problem

I think every Christian has had doubts at some point in their life.  If you say you haven’t, I would say you are either lying in which case you need confession.  Or you are telling the truth in which case you need therapy!  We all experience seasons of doubt.  I am no different in this regard.

When I was young in my new Christian convictions, I had many doubts.  I was fortunate enough to have a supportive pastor and friends that allowed me to express my doubts and gave me room to find answers to my questions.  

Is It Safe To Doubt?

This is not always the case. Doubt is not often readily received in the Church.  In fact, many find it down right dangerous to express any form of doubt whatsoever.  

This is tragic.  Of all places, the Church should be one of answers.  If we can’t safely explore our convictions in church, where in the world can we?  

We’ve written before about the tragic exodus of youth from our churches.  One of the main reasons these students give for leaving is that they couldn’t get answers at their church.  Another significant problem they list is that it simply isn’t a safe place to ask questions.

How Does The Church Respond To Doubt?

This is a failure of the church.  Most Christians are not prepared to face the world we now live in.  We live in an age of hyper skepticism.  Questioning and skepticism are seen as high virtues. Not something the average church today prepared to deal with.

As I said, I had many doubts as a young Christian.  I had serious questions that I thought could possibly be defeaters of the Christian worldview. I thought there were no good answers to the questions I had.

Looking For Answers

The only problem with this was that I wasn’t really LOOKING for answers.  I would find a question or challenge to Christianity and would let it eat at me.  I never tried to find an answer to the challenge. The stress over the unanswered questions would just get worse and worse.

Eventually a good friend gave me some sound advice.  He told me the answers to my questions were out there if I would just take the time to look.  Sure enough, he was right.

As I began finding answers to my questions, I became more confident I was on the right path.  The doubts weren’t as deep anymore.  If a question did come up, I was much more confident that I could deal with it.  I began to doubt my doubts more that Christianity!

The Battles Get Bigger

The problem with doubt is that it never fully goes away.  I had a science teacher in high school that had a poster on the wall of his classroom.  The poster pictured Albert Einstein, and the caption read “Do not worry about your difficulties in Mathematics. I can assure you mine are still greater!”

I can relate to that poster so much!  Now that I am more mature in my faith, the challenges that used to bother me so much seem trivial now. I now deal with greater and more sophisticated the arguments against Christianity than I could ever have dreamed of not so long ago.

But my ability to answer the less difficult questions and challenges not only prepared me to answer the more difficult ones, but gave me the assurance that there WERE answers to those questions.  I now am more doubtful of my doubts than I am of Christianity.  

A Never Ending Battle

C.S. Lewis famously said “Now that I am a Christian, I do have moods in which the whole thing looks very improbable: but when I was an atheist, I had moods in which Christianity looked terribly probable.”

Doubting your doubts

Seek out the answers to your questions.  I can almost guarantee that someone has dealt with whatever objection you are dealing with. You can always email or message anyone here at TMC with your questions. We are happy to help!  Soon you too may be doubting your doubts!

How have you dealt with doubt in your journey as a Christian?  Where have you gone for answers?  Is your church supportive of people experiencing doubt?

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