Sometimes I get the urge to write a book for new Christians, telling them all the things that are completely normal to feel, experience and even doubt in the beginning of their walk. Not that I’m some big scholar or anything, but a tell-it-like-it-is bluntly put book would have really saved me some heartache and frustration, with myself. And I probably would have actually opened myself up to receive some grace from God. Instead, I spent way too much time thinking I was a “bad Christian” for having the fleeing thought, “Is this really real?”

Common Christian misconception #1: You’re not truly a Christ follower if you doubt.

This is a pet-peeve and a flat out lie if someone says they’ve never doubted or questioned. Doubting does not mean that you are not a Christian. In fact, doubting doesn’t even mean that you are not considered a stable Christian. Doubting actually means that you have flesh- I have flesh- and we are all human. In all reality, I think it means we can admit that we have finite little minds that cannot and will not EVER be able to comprehend God’s plan; how God raised Jesus (who is God too? wt-frig) from the grave and why this day-in, and day-out life is so stinking weird. I mean really, this life is weird. What is the point of half the things I do? Hang on let me just run to Target and buy some OPI nail-polish and do my nails. It’s weird and there’s no point to it. period. Just go read Ecclesiastes…

“Meaningless! Meaningless!”
says the Teacher.
“Utterly meaningless!
Everything is meaningless.”

Anyways, the whole point of the book of Hebrews is based on an explanation that surrounds itself around the word, Faith. This is ultimately what being a Christian is based on, and why Christians tend to get their panties all in a wad when someone says, “Oh, you’re Religious.”

Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see — Hebrews 11:1

Religious practices are something the eye can see, and faith is definitely not that. Personally, I don’t care if someone says I’m religious. Most Christians are religious in their faith, what’s the difference… tomato, tomato(e) that is another whole topic that I won’t go into to save myself from getting sucked into sarcastic comments and possibly offending yet another person by what I write.

Anywho, the central thought of the entire book of Hebrews is Christ and his role as mediator between God and humanity. Which, is obviously also completely based on faith. The whole thought of being able to trust someone (Jesus) who we only hear and read great things about blows my mind. The fact that someone I’ve never met can grab hold of my heart, change me and change my life totally blows my mind. I mean, let’s be honest here we are all blindly trusting that this person is who he says he is: God. I have a hard enough time believing a friend who speaks highly of someone else… unless, I’ve met the person, talked with them, and have seen for myself that I can trust them.

Yet, for some odd reason each day I wake up and God gives me overwhelming convictions that he is the truth, the life and the way. And no matter how many times in my walk I’ve cried out and asked God if he’s even really there, he has given me just enough faith to go on. He has given me, the girl who questions everything and the motives of everyone, enough faith to keep waking up each day and walking in it. Only a creator, life-giver and truth could do that to someone.

I say all of this because I think so many times in our poor emotional state we question ourselves as Christians. So many times I’ve read Matthew 7:21-23 and think wow, God is totally going to say he did not know me.

“Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name and in your name drive out demons and in your name perform many miracles?’ Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’

The fact of the matter is we need to stop doubting ourselves as Christians, and we need to start seeing ourselves as God see’s us. Here’s a good question to ask yourself; when you think of Jesus preaching to thousands, how do you think he spoke to those people… both Christians and non-Christians? The more I’ve been reading the Gospel, the more I realize how Jesus preached in such a loving, caring way. It’s amazing how just having a certain perception of the tone of a message can make a huge difference in your walk. I once thought Jesus preached in this stern, strong, angry voice. But the more I read; the more I doubt, the more I question, which ultimately means the more God can answer my questions, with his loving truth. And then, the more I begin to listen to his gentle voice, I begin to believe that God actually understands that he is too big, and too amazing for us to fully grasp the idea surrounding around Grace and Jesus. And you know what? That’s okay, and a form of surrendering.

He replied, “Because you have so little faith. I tell you the truth, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.” — Matthew 17:20

I once read this scripture thinking, Jesus was saying “you have so little faith” in an angry way… UGH, why Chrissy!?! Why are you doubting again? Why do you have such little faith in me? The truth in this scripture is that Jesus was kindly acknowledging that as sinful humans, with fleshly desires, we are going to experience times where we have little faith. But that’s the beauty of God, he will give us that teeny-tiny mustard seed so we can wake-up tomorrow and keep walking in his light. He will give us just enough to keep us going, even when we don’t know why.

As I was praying this morning, I was asking God to allow me to see things through him. To continue to give me just a little mustard seed that keeps me going each time I question and after he gives me the faith, to allow me to grasp who he is. During this prayer all I heard was “fruit”, and I thought of this scripture…

Matthew 7: 16-17

By their fruit you will recognize them. Do people pick grapes from thornbushes, or figs from thistles? Likewise, every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit.

I began to think, instead of focusing on what makes us a “bad Christian” we need to start focusing on how we can look to God to bear fruit in our lives…

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law –Galatians 5:22-23

So often the enemy gets us to focus on how “bad” we are for questioning and doubting, which totally throws us off to God’s plan… It’s Satan’s plan of distraction. We do need to ask, question our motives, ask God to test our motives and we do need to allow conviction to enter into our lives, or we will keep sitting in the bad fruit, never tasting the plan that God has for us. This is how we really understand how REAL God is; by tasting his plan, having him bear these good fruits in our lives and seeing the change he has made in us. His plan and his good fruit in our lives is what leads us to contentment and to fulfillment in our petty, little, insignificant lives.

If you’re walking in sin, you’re going to bear bad fruit, and if you’re walking in the light you are going to bear good fruit. We need to start looking towards the light, stop focusing on the negative and pray that God increases our fruit. Once he does this, there will be little room to doubt, because we will see the growth in character & integrity, and we will certainly taste the good fruit of what he’s doing in our lives.

Questioning leads to answers… doubting leads to increased faith… but only when we let God in on these feelings.

Oh, and I just need to end with this happy picture. Because I love him and God for blessing me in so many ways!

 

Isn’t Juliet sooo amazing?!

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