April 28, 2011

Words That Dispel Doubt

Mark 9:14-29

Immediately the boy’s father exclaimed, “I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief!”
Mark 9:24


Everyone who has set their heart on following Jesus will face uncertainties from time to time. Sometimes our doubts grow over a period of time, but other times they seem to strike us instantly for no reason at all.

A believer from hundreds of years ago, St. John of the Cross, called that experience “the dark night of the soul.”

It’s not that we don’t want to believe! It’s simply that sometimes we find it hard to believe.

That was true of the man who came to Jesus, desperately longing for his son to be healed. He assured Jesus that he believed, but, in the same breath, he asked Jesus to help him overcome his unbelief. It was an example of doubt seeking faith, and, in response, Jesus honored the man’s request.

God doesn’t want us to be stuck in doubt. The apostle John said, “I write these things to you who believe … so that you may know that you have eternal life” (1 John 5:13).

God wants us to live with the joy and peace that come from being certain Jesus is alive, trusting that we will live with him forever! But when we’re not sure, God understands—and he uses our questions and doubts to teach us to rely on him more fully.

Ask for his help, and he will restore your faith and deepen your trust.

O God, sometimes I’m not sure—I want to believe; “help me overcome my unbelief!” Assure me deep within so that I can live with the peace and joy you intend for me! Amen.

About the author — Shawn Brix

Rev. Shawn Brix has served as pastor in several Ontario churches. He and his wife, Jenny, have three children.

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