Friday, October 14, 2005

embracing doubt...

Skepticism is good. Take Thomas for example - usually called doubting Thomas although he should probably be more accurately called Thomas the skeptic. I find what Mark Buchanan says about Thomas very helpful:

"He doubted not to excuse his unbelief, but to establish robust belief. He doubted so that his belief might be based on something more than rumor and wishful thinking...he doubted order to find a firm path out and into the holy wild...the holy wild is where we have driving and haunting doubts, God hungry doubts that pull us to our knees, force us to the Word, make us wrestle all night and not let go until He blesses us.

The point is, doubt is not a bad thing. We all need healthy doses of it to get us where we need to be. Doubt causes us to dig, to examine our faith, to ask hard questions and accept hard answers. I find that faith cycles for me - believing and doubting, taking hold of things and letting them go. It's a constant struggle. But each bout brings deeper understanding. I need to embrace those wrestling moments, the tugging, pushing, stretching, and pulling. I need to try to maneuver myself into new ways of thinking and doing things. I want to push the limits and know I'm safe in my questioning - that God will win, but he'll let me try to figure it out. I want to experience those driving, haunting, God hungry doubts - painful as they may be. I want my faith to grow and be real. That God cares enough about me to bring me to my knees and then allow me to wrestle within his safe embrace is an awesome thing.

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