“Like fear, doubt is not in and of itself a bad thing. God has given us the ability to wonder and the desire to know and understand. . . . Because doubt drives us to know and understand, it has the power to lead you to the One who knows and understands everything. Your capacity to doubt can drive you to God, but not always.”- Paul David Tripp
In Chapter 6 (“The Doubt Trap”) of Suffering, Paul David Tripp states that there’s no deeper, more fundamentally changing doubt than to quit believing that God is good. Thus, this type of doubt arises because we let our circumstances redefine our view of God. Instead, we must let what the Bible says about God help us interpret the suffering we’re facing. Otherwise, worship devolves into an angry demand for change.
Thus, Pastor Tripp describes the consequences of this form of doubt:
“If you’ve come to the conclusion, as a result of assessing your circumstances, that God is not good, then you will quit listening to what he says and going to him for help. None of us would ever think of seeking out the help of someone we no longer trust. Doubt in the middle of suffering has the potential to radically change your life, but not for the good.”
Therefore, the author stresses, we need to talk about doubt. When applied wrongly, your God-given capacity to doubt may produce disastrous results. This doubt comes in two forms. Pastor Tripp discusses the first for today.
The first form of doubt is the doubt of wonderment. Because God’s ways are not like our ways, at street level the life of faith always includes a struggle of trust. In fact, Pastor Tripp[ asserts, a normal part of a healthy life involves the doubt of wonderment. Since life doesn’t always make sense, it’s good to bring your doubts to God.
Today’s question: How do you express your God-given capacity to doubt? Please share.
Tomorrow’s blog: the Christmas Short Meditation — “Christians be joyful – hope for the hole-idays”