30-Day Writing Challenge · Blog 365 · Whispers of Faith

When the Doubt Feels Too Large

30-Day Writing Challenge

Day 26: Write about an area in your life that you’d like to improve

Christmas might be over, but the Christmas story is still resting on my heart – still tugging at my conscience, still stirring my convictions.

As I get ready to face a new year, I get excited thinking about all that I want to accomplish. And then in the next instant, I shrink back, filled with doubts that I can actually do all that God is calling me to.

And my crippling fear and doubts shame me, chasing me back to two characters in the book of Luke who had opposite reactions to God’s promises.

First there was Zechariah, who answered the angel, “‘How can I be sure of this? I am an old man and my wife is well along in years.’”

Zechariah was logical from a human standpoint. He heard what the angel said, but the belief wasn’t infiltrating his heart. He was filled with doubts, questioning what God said He was going to do. And because of that, his voice was taken away from him.

Then there was Mary, who answered the angel, “‘I am the Lord’s servant. May it be to me as you have said.’”

Mary also was logical and asked, “How will this be since I am a virgin?” But she didn’t let her doubts stop her from believing that God would absolutely fulfill His promises, even if it seemed impossible. She simply offered herself up as a vessel – open to however God wanted to use her.

As Ann Voskamp says, “There is this. Never doubt that there are two kinds of doubt: one that fully lives into the questions, and one that uses the questions as weapons against fully living.”

Mary lived right into her questions. She leaned into the sovereign one who has the answers to all of our heart’s deepest questions. But Zechariah let his questions stop him from moving forward. He pulled back from the sovereign one because he couldn’t figure it out on his own.

And as I examine my own heart, I have to ask myself – am I a Zechariah, letting my doubt make me mute? Or am I a Mary, letting my doubt drive me into the welcoming arms of a Savior whose plans are far greater for me than I can imagine?

I am so guilty of letting my doubt keep me from the presence of God because I can’t figure out the answers on my own. I have made my faith about my own logic and reasoning instead of surrendering all that I can’t figure out to the only One who can figure it all out.

His arms are wide open to receive this wandering heart – and when I lay down all my weary heart tries to hold on to, He invades my timidity and questions with the assurance of who He is. He gives stability when I feel insecure and unstable. Because when we have doubts, He always meets us with reassuring words of truth – truth about who He is.

Will I accept that truth and live bravely into the next step of my journey, answers known or not? Or will I resist and keep trying to walk down my own path? The truth is, the end of my own path is frustration, distance from God, and anxiety. The end of God’s path is peace, intimacy with God, and reassurance.

I might still wonder how my story will end and how it will come about. But I don’t have to fear it, and I don’t have to cling to my own logic to try to figure it out. Because the best part about walking with Christ is that He will work it all out for my good and His glory. My good is always intertwined with His glory.

And if my life puts Him on display in any way, big or small, then it’s worth it. It’s beautiful.

So tonight, I pray that He would put my doubts to sleep – that He would melt them away in His arms of peace and security – that He would remind me once again of His sovereign plan and purposes. I pray that He would be my all-satisfying Living Water, and that I would surrender every question to His truth.

Because in the end, “Blessed is she who has believed that what the Lord has said to her will be accomplished!” (Luke 1:45)

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