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Is Doubt a Helpful Part of Faith?

Is Doubt a Helpful Part of Faith?

Faith is the substance of things hoped for—the evidence or proof that something exists without physically seeing it. Having faith in God is a charge that all Christians have been challenged with. Living, breathing, and walking in faith is an often-difficult way of life because of the numerous challenges it brings. It’s also difficult because many Christians confuse faith in God with faith in faith. Faith in God has many layers to it. Having faith in God is first believing He is the true and living God. It is believing He sent His Son as the savior of the world. It is accepting His divine will for your life. It is trusting in Him to guide you through anything. It is submitting requests to Him according to His will and believing they will be done His way, in His timing. Having faith in faith is believing that you can have anything you desire when you desire it. It’s the belief that you can initially make anything happen with your own abilities. It’s having confidence in yourself and that the things you want when you want them are what you need.

Doubt is questioning things. It is the feeling of uncertainty. It brings about confusion. It causes a lack of confidence and distrust. So, when the question of whether or not doubt is a helpful part of faith comes about, the answer to this is simple. Yes, doubt is a beneficial part of faith. Here’s why. Doubt takes away the notion that you can ask God anything through faith, and you will receive it how you want it and when you want it. This isn’t true. When you ask God in prayer for something in your will, the request may not be granted. When requests are delayed or denied, it brings about feelings of doubt. This can make one believe that God isn’t listening or that He doesn’t care. However, those feelings of doubt can be used to shift your prayers, your mindset, and your relationship with God.

When a petition is delayed or denied, it often causes people to question God. When this happens, it can allow your heart and spirit to be vulnerable to God and let Him come in and show you that He heard your prayer and reveal to you why your request may have been delayed or denied. If you listen to the Holy Spirit and allow Him to show you what He has in store for your life and how God fulfills all your needs, this can shift your relationship with God. When this happens, the desires of your heart are focused more on what God wants for you than what you want for yourself.

On the other hand, when a prayer isn’t answered, it can hinder one’s relationship with God and cause someone to doubt Him. This happens more often than not with believers because of a lacking relationship with God and forgetting the root of their belief, which is having faith in the everlasting God for who He is and not simply for what He can do for you. If you find yourself struggling with doubt when it comes to your walk in faith, take some of the following steps to help you on your journey.

Having Faith in God When Experiencing Doubt

  1. Establish a genuine relationship with God so much so that the things you ask of Him in faith are things He’s placed on your heart. Take conscious steps towards renewing and deepening your relationship with God every day. Spend time meditating on His Holy Word. Study His Word. Listen to biblically-based sermons. Talk to God in private. Whatever you decide to do, be sure it draws you closer to God for who He is and establish an understanding of who He is to you.
  2. Trust and understand that God’s will is best for your life. Everyone has an idea of what they want their life to look like. However, the things, circumstances, or people we want in our lives may not be what’s best for us. God created us; therefore, He knows our beginning, middle, and end. We have to trust in Him and know that He has everything under control.
  3. Have a strong prayer life. When doubt creeps into your mind, begin praying fervently and humbly ask God to remove them. It’s also helpful to ask for prayer or have a consistent prayer partner to help you face those times of doubt.
  4. You will have doubts. It’s natural. You’re human. Don’t feel bad about having them or be discouraged when they come about. This is the time to submerge yourself in prayer and saturate your mind and spirit with uplifting Scriptures. Not only this, when doubts come about, pray and ask God to show you the reasons why these feelings of doubt have come about. It’s always important to get to the heart of doubt so you can work through it.
  5. Having doubts does not diminish your faith or belief in God. In fact, they can make your belief in Him and His will for your life stronger. When a request you’ve submitted goes unanswered, take a moment and ask God if you’re asking for the right thing. When things don’t go your way, ask God to show you His way. Again, it’s okay to have doubts. It’s a part of the journey and a part of growth as a Christian.
  6. Read and study Scriptures in their entirety. There are several Scriptures in the Bible that encourage us to ask God for what we want. However, many of us often read what we believe applies to our situation and skip or glance over what comes before and after the words we focus on. It’s essential to read everything. Once you’ve read it, pray for understanding and application.

Doubt and uncertainty are a part of life. As you continue life’s journey, you will experience many things that will create doubt in your mind, heart, and spirit. Embrace it. Being in denial about your fears/doubts will make matters worse for you. Acknowledge your feelings of uncertainty. Get to the root of what may have caused these feelings. If you don’t, they can overwhelm you and create bigger issues for you. Talk to someone you trust about what you’re experiencing. Be honest about everything. Don’t be ashamed of what you’re feeling. Everyone experiences doubt, no matter how strong or positive they seem to be. Pray and ask God to reveal His will to you for the circumstance you are experiencing doubt about. Wait patiently for His guidance. When you receive God’s guidance, follow it with confidence.

When you feel doubt emerging in your spirit about any situation, take a moment and pray this prayer:

God our Father, I humbly ask that You reveal the root of the doubt in my heart. I ask that you help me understand it and remove it so that I may be a witness for you to others who have doubts. God, I know my fears are real, but I know you are also real. I pray that you will provide comfort and guidance when I have doubt in my heart so that I may release it. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Photo Credit: ©iStock/Getty Images Plus/maurusone

Crosswalk Contributor Liz LampkinAuthor Liz Lampkin is an experienced writer, teacher, and speaker. She is an advocate for singles who encourages them to live their best life God’s way. Follow her on Instagram @Liz_Lampkin.

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You can read Rhonda's full article here.