When Doubt Creeps In & Sitting Among Friends #72

Wonder, doubt, and fear are all a part of the process of putting our trust in Christ more while stacking them up against the truth and evidence He has displayed in our lives.  When those thoughts creep in, we can replace them with the truth of what we know to be true of God.  When time, circumstances, and feelings make us weary we can hand them over to Him for the same encouragement He gave to Thomas. Here is the proof. Stop doubting and believe.


While I was reading my son a section in his Bible, a thought popped in my mind.

Is this all real? While it was brief and I was certainly assured that it was, I was a bit startled. 

Have you ever wondered? Have you ever doubted? Have you ever felt like this is too much and could it possibly be true?

As Christians, having those thoughts is often accompanied by a sense of guilt. A sense of wonder or confusion. We may have these thoughts and think it is not possible to really believe in God and wonder or doubt if this is all real?

Jesus understands. In fact, He wasn’t afraid to clear this matter up with one of His close companions. And guess what? It came with no accompanying guilt.

We can come off this mountaintop of joy after Easter. We are ready to celebrate and are encouraged to get moving in our journey of faith. Then life creeps in and we can wonder or have doubts if we are the person for the job.

So, if you have ever wondered or had doubts if this is real (I am going to guess that maybe all of us have at some point) then let’s dive into John 20.

What has just occurred in John is the women went to the empty tomb, Jesus appeared to Mary Magdalene and then the disciples.  

I want to remind you before we go any further that the disciples were hiding behind locked doors because they were afraid.  

Christ had been crucified and now He was missing from the tomb.  The reality of what was in front of them was the leader they had been following and riding all their hopes on, was gone.

Can you say bundles of wonder, doubt and fear must have been sweeping through their emotions? I can’t imagine the physical and emotional trauma they must have been feeling.  But then…

Jesus appears and shows them His hands and side. He greets them with, “Peace be with you!” And they are overjoyed.

But one was missing. One didn’t have his fears or doubts calmed. Before we are too hard on Thomas, remember Jesus showed the others right away. He knew they had fears (they were behind locked doors) and His greeting of peace meant He knew they needed them calmed.

When Thomas arrived with the other disciples, they were overjoyed and exclaimed, we have seen the Lord! But Thomas…

Wonder, doubt, and fear are all a part of the process of putting our trust in Christ more while stacking them up against the truth and evidence He has displayed in our lives.  When those thoughts creep in, we can replace them with the truth of what we know to be true of God.  When time, circumstances, and feelings make us weary we can hand them over to Him for the same encouragement He gave to Thomas. Here is the proof. Stop doubting and believe.But he said to them, “Unless I see the nail marks in his hands and put my finger where the nails were, and put my hand into his side, I will not believe.” John 20:26b

I will not believe. Have you ever said, unless God shows me this… Or… if God could only let me know or see this… Or… If only I could see a miracle, then…

John tells us a week later. Thomas had to wait a week to see what the others had already had eased in their minds. It must have been a very long week.

Sometimes a day, a week, a year or a decade of seeing clarity in God can eat away at us. It can eat away at our faith. The wonder, the doubts, the fears take place of the truth or reality of what the Lord is really doing in our lives.

Then the Lord appeared to Thomas and greeted Him, “Peace be with you!”

Then he said to Thomas, “Put your finger here; see my hands. Reach out your hand and put it into my side. Stop doubting and believe.” John 20:27

Right away, He addresses this issue of doubt. Put your finger here. See my hands. Physically see. Touch. Understand. I am and did what I said I would do. 

He knows and addresses His doubt. Stop doubting and believe.

The opposite of his doubt is belief. Belief in the evidence.

Maybe you are saying to yourself. Well, if I could only see that, then I could believe. Then my doubts could be put to rest.

We don’t get the benefit of physically seeing Jesus. But listen to Jesus’ next words to Thomas.

Then Jesus told him, “Because you have seen me, you have believed; blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.” John 20:29

Blessed are those who have not seen me and still believe. That is us who have put our trust in Him. We don’t have to see Jesus to believe. We can see the evidence of His existence is so many other ways.

We have his amazing sunsets that declare His great love. We have the miracle of life as He gives us each breath we take. We have His power displayed in us through His love that we can give others. We have healing, mending, and restoring of broken hearts, bodies and lives.  

As we walk and put our trust in Him more and more, He becomes more evident in the grace and mercy that he pours into our lives.

We are on this side of the cross and get the benefit of walking in grace and not under the law. We are the recipients of His blessings, goodness, and faithfulness through the generations.

Wonder, doubt, and fear are all a part of the process of putting our trust in Christ more while stacking them up against the truth and evidence He has displayed in our lives.

When those thoughts creep in, we can replace them with the truth of what we know to be true of God.

When time, circumstances, and feelings make us weary we can hand them over to Him for the same encouragement He gave to Thomas. Here is the proof. Stop doubting and believe.

Christ didn’t rebuke Thomas. He said, put out your hand. Take hold of me and Believe!

Wonder, doubt, and fear are all a part of the process of putting our trust in Christ more while stacking them up against the truth and evidence He has displayed in our lives.  When those thoughts creep in, we can replace them with the truth of what we know to be true of God.  When time, circumstances, and feelings make us weary we can hand them over to Him for the same encouragement He gave to Thomas. Here is the proof. Stop doubting and believe.
Does doubt creep in?


Following Jesus' example. Here is a simple exercise to replace doubt with belief in your life. We are going to replace the lies and doubt with truth.  First, ask God to reveal some solid truths and evidences of His work in your life. (If you are a believer in Christ, that is miracle number one). Keep a list. A physical reminder of the ways God has shown up in your life. When doubt creeps in, ask God to replace the doubts with the truths you have recorded. Trust and Believe that His words are meant for you. 

Let me know how using this exercise goes. What other ideas do you have and use when doubts and fears creep in? Let us know in the comments below. Need More encouragement. Feel free to email me!
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15 comments :

  1. Thanks, Jaime, for this honest reflection on doubt. I find myself sitting with my questions sometimes, and I think it's a healthy thing to push against the facts and to be reassured in the end that God is who He says He is, and that He has done all that He said He would do. A surface reading of the text may not spark questions. It's when we dig, that we take the risk of doubting.

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  2. When that doubt or question suddenly pops into our minds, it can certainly bring shame and guilt. Thanks for the reminder that those thoughts come to us all and that Jesus is bigger than our doubts! Thanks, too, for hosting!

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  3. Thanks so much for hosting! I enjoyed reading your post this morning! I am working on a Thomas lesson, and this added some more things to think about.

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  4. He is so good to us, even in our doubt!!! Praise!

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  5. I just came across the passage in Matthew yesterday, where John the Baptist was questioning whether Christ was the one to come. So it occurred to me that if John the Baptist could have doubts, then certainly I could too! This is such an important post, Jaime. I'm so glad you've made it clear that we all struggle from time to time. It's natural for us as humans, but thankfully we have a Supernatural God! Thanks for the linkup, my friend!

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  6. Hi Jaime! I like the idea of keeping reminders of what God has done for us in the past as a way of warding off doubts. One pastor told us in a meeting once that if God can do this, He can do that; this being from my journal of previous blessings, and that being my expected blessings the enemy is harassing me with doubt over. Thanks for sharing.

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  7. Jaime I always appreciate your thoughts and insights. Thank you for sharing! I love the way you share the little details about what was happening behind the scenes. I really appreciate you hosting here each week, too. Thank you so much!

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  8. a great and needed post, dear Jamie. Doubt isn't addressed enough - too afraid to expresss them maybe? looking like you're not a strong Christian, perhaps? when I doubted my teacher said, If God isn't big enough for your questions, He isn't a big enough God, is He, Sue? What a release that was for me. Currently a little doubtful about my retreat speaking this weekend and another one the next weekend in WASH - all that rain, and all that driving and 8 talks. Prayers appreciated. God will work in spite of my doubts,and I do love to speak. Now...to review and Pack!

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  9. I will freely admit I am the Doubting Thomas. I look at things from a very cynical view. Every time I start to believe, reality in life slaps me in the face and I go back to doubting. For example, I got messed over at work and was lied to by administration, so I went back to doubting but it didn't last too long (a lot shorter than usual) and started to believe it was a good thing because it opened my eyes to looking at other opportunities in life. Now I am back to doubting because during a meeting a co-worker started yelling and screaming at me and all the supervision said zero. I filed a work grievance about allowing violence at work. I was just told that main boss turned it down because "He is not emotionally mature and this behavior is his way." Just wondering what can I do??? So I am doubting again.

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  10. Yes I'm a doubter... I've heard that doubting isn't as bad as we think because it moves us to greater faith?!??
    I'm a analyzer and sometimes I can't understand things which then brings in doubt!
    Great post!

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  11. A great post! I think adversity can trigger doubt, but I also think that satan will randomly hit us with doubt. When it's the enemy, I since an instant, "where did that come from?" shocked and repulsed feeling. No matter the reason or source, you've given great points on combating doubt and building faith.

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  12. Jaime, I forgot to linkup yesterday!!!

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  13. Keeping a list is a great idea, Jaime! Going to the truths of scripture when doubts creep in is always inspiring. We need to constantly renew our minds and "take every thought captive" to Christ. Great post! Have a blessed weekend!

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  14. That is a wonderful exercise Jamie. We've done that before in prayer, stating the lies we've believed about our pasts and then asking Jesus to replace those lies with what He says about us. It is powerful.
    Thanks for this and for the party.
    patti

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  15. Excellent and doubt-killing exercise Jamie...love it! God will never fail to replace lies with truth.

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James 1:17
Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of Lights with whom there is no variation or shifting shadow.

It is of utmost importance that you know that Christ died for you. He died for all sinners so that our relationship with Him could be restored.

Because of His sacrifice on the cross we can have peace. Are you seeking more peace today? Peace of the soul can only be given through the redemptive power of Jesus Christ.

I hope that you, too, know the saving grace of an amazing God.
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2 Timothy 1:7

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