First, I’ve learned that the people who tell you that you shouldn’t ever have experience doubt if you are really following God and are on the “right” path, are probably smoking crack. You’re human. And you have a brain. And you live in the real world. I reckon even Columbus was probably all “This was a very bad idea” midway over the Atlantic.
Second, I’ve learned that doubt for a day, or even a few days, doesn’t mean you scrap the whole plan and launch off in a different “safer” direction. Temporary doubt shouldn’t translate into knee-jerk reactions and it doesn’t equate disobedience or missing God’s plan, either. (Consistent doubt, repeated questions from wise counsel, an unsettled spirit . . . these may speak a different truth entirely, however.)
Third. If you don’t have days when you seriously question, well, maybe you’re not pushing envelopes hard enough. Maybe you’re playing it too safe. In my experience, doubt and risk are a bit like three-legged race partners.
Fourth, Fifth, and Sixth. I’ve also learned that some days, especially the doubting ones, you need to walk forward out of sheer will, grit, blood, and sweat, other days you need to treat yourself to wine or chocolate, and the rest just require an earlyaspossible bedtime. (Things always look better in the morning, anyway.)
And seventh, I’ve learned, and am still learning, that the biggest choice I make when I doubt the circumstances or the chosen path is either to lean in or to fall back.
When I fall back, I throw up my hands or I wring them– neither of which is productive for me or my relationships.
But when I choose to lean in--
to press forward into the journey ahead,
to submit myself to the fallout, whatever that may be,
and to trust that God can handle my questions and my heart–
this, this is where freedom comes alive.
And I’m learning it’s this process of leaning in that kicks the doubts to the curb, at least for a little while . . . .
. . . Until next time.*
*Reference first thing learned.
What are you doubting right now? What helps you not give up too early?