my faith is bigger than my doubt (but i still have doubt)

Monday, August 26, 2013

{photo credit}

i was sitting in a new church yesterday. a church with hard backed pews and hymnals. the pastor wore a robe. there were no catchy video intros. no drums or electric guitar. no skinny jeans. it was traditional, reminiscent of my childhood, and it felt refreshing.

my bible was sitting in my lap open to the book of john. i was skimming the words as the pastor spoke them aloud when my eyes glanced to the opposite page. there was a small devotional written by a lady named debra klingsporn. i became absorbed in these words and tuned out everything else going on around me.

"sitting on my bookshelf is a book published several years ago called the myth of certainty. the title alone catches my eye and speaks to me with a ring of truth. how i long for a world of black and white, good and bad, yes and no; a world of clear-cut distinctions and effortless decisions because the good and bad can be easily identified. no blurring rationalizations. no complicating considerations. 

but clear-cut distinctions and effortless choices aren't true to my experience of life. between black and white are shades of gray. between good and bad are confusing questions. between yes and no is a strong maybe. 

the fact of the matter is, no matter how black and white and absolute some defenders of the faith portray the gospel, i simply can't buy that line. my experience and the experience of the people of faith throughout the centuries, is one of a God who meets us in the questions, who honors our seeking, and who created us to be intelligent beings. when it comes to our faith, if we're looking for proof and certainty, we won't find it. 

living at the heart of faith is living with uncertainty, trusting in the unseen. somewhere along the way, we have to leap the chasm between that which we know absolutely and that which calls us from within. yet even in our uncertainty, we walk in the presence of the holy. 

God is far more interested in our honesty than our piety. we have only to offer him a willing heart and truthful spirit and he'll take it from there, meeting us in the chasm as we make the leap."

if you're doubting, you're not alone. if you have questions, so do i. i do know that i am loved by God. i know that i have purpose. but i also have more unanswered thoughts than concrete answers. 

it seems that it would be nice to have my theology and thoughts of the divine to be laid out like silverware on a table-straight, perfect, polished. but i think it's better that my questions and answers are actually arranged in a bit of disarray, changing this way then that as i learn something new. if i never had questions, how would i learn? become stronger? how would i challenge myself and others?

i have been that person who is content with not diving deeper. with accepting things with a nod and a smile. and, at times, i still am. having everything figured out is not my goal. but there is beautiful growth that comes from asking "why?" and there is beauty when you see something from a perspective that you never had before. i've been learning this a lot lately. it's scary, exciting, uneasy, grounding. 

i am reminded of lyrics by one of my favorite artists. 

'cause grey is not a compromise -
it is the bridge between two sides.
the shores on which our stubborn land
and restless seas collide.
grey is not just middle ground,
it is a truce that waits to be signed.
i would even argue that, from where we stand,
it most represents the color of God's eyes.

-101010 by sleeping at last

don't be afraid to ask questions. don't be afraid to learn something new or refine the way you once thought about something. be willing to hear someone out. consider that there is more gray than you may realize. trust. pray. love. 


  1. so many feel the same way. thanks for putting it into words.

    1. i probably could have rambled on because it's something i think about a lot. questions are not the enemy! thanks for reading.

    2. beautifully written, Lacey. Thank you for being open and real. love it :)

    3. sometimes i can be an adult and talk about my feelings. it's hard, but i can do it! :-) thanks for the kind words.

  2. What a well-crafted blog entry; I really appreciate your insight and honesty. Lately I've been doing a lot of thinking along the lines of what you've written here, and it's good to know that I'm not alone. I hope you're doing well!

    1. i figured that for every 10 posts i write about brownies, i have to do at least one serious one. yeah, you are definitely not alone. i think most people have more questions than they admit. thanks for reading! i'm doing well. you?

  3. Replies
    1. who knew doubting and asking questions could be such a positive thing?

  4. You're a Christian!? I didn't realize this, so can we be online BFFs yet? ;)


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