Max Lucado said if there was one thing he could go back and tell himself when he first started his writing and preaching career it would be “to prepare for self-doubt.”
Listening to this well-versed, highly successful author and lead pastor of 30+ years admit that he continues to deal with doubt was an eye-opener. A game-changer. A needed shot of reality.
Really? That’s the one thing you would tell yourself. Interesting. I don’t struggle with that. Not so much.
Wait. Yes, I do. This was a WORD for me and maybe it will be a WORD for you.
This one little five letter word that I believe we do not give enough thought. Enough respect for the weight it holds.
Wrapped tightly in a shroud of insecurity and unbelief and even arrogance. That word doubt.
We all doubt something.
We doubt ourselves.
We doubt our spouse.
We doubt our children.
We doubt our neighbor.
We doubt God.
He may not be considered God to everyone, but we ALL doubt Him at some point.
Doubt His existence.
Doubt His ability.
Doubt His love.
And then there is that one lie that led to that one word. Doubt.
In the garden Adam and Eve chose doubt…over God. Evil over Good. And God loved them and loves us enough to allow us the ability to choose.
They chose to believe the lie that maybe they were missing something.
Maybe they actually could be like God…forgetting they already were.
Oh, how we so easily fall into the same trap and follow in the same ill-gotten footsteps of these two who had the perfect life.
And because of doubt…gave it all up. For death. And as soon as the choice had been made, they regretted it. Wished they could take it back. Take back the doubt that now filled their once pure and innocent and full-of-Life hearts.
Now nothing. No peace. No joy. No afternoon strolls with their Creator in perfect harmony. All because they doubted their existence and chose what was “a delight to the eyes” and what would “seem to make one wise.”
Isn’t that the way it always is? The grass is always greener. Yep, been there and done that. Like a mirage of sorts…the closer you get, the better it looks until you actually take that step and in an instant you wish you never had.
Wished you had followed your gut that told you it was too good to be true.
Wished you could take back that initial doubt and go another way. The other way. Any way but where you find yourself now. In this dead place.
No green in sight. Where did it go? It was just here.
We never have just enough to be satisfied and so when the temptation is laid bare, we can’t help ourselves.
We. must. try. it. We must doubt our own reality. Our own existence.
I guess it really is in our nature to doubt. In our flesh, Adam and Eve born, nature.
But that doesn’t make it right or good or healthy. It just makes us real. Real human.
So, that’s where doubt starts. As a seed. Not even necessarily planted deep…it doesn’t need much water to grow. Just a touch. Just an inclination. Just a hint of sunlight to spur it on.
Likes those first weeds of spring in my plant bed, that doubt is. Doesn’t take anything much to get them growing, but once they start, it takes all of heaven and hell to get them killed. And there are always a few left that I miss and they grow more. I can never get rid of all those weeds. Try as I might, I can never kill them all.
And I may never be able to kill all the doubt in my life. Not until I’m perfectly perfect and right now I’m perfectly imperfect.
So I’ll keep hashing this doubt thing out. And I hope you’ll hash it out with me some more. It needs to be put to death. As much as we possibly can. Only when we start to kill the seeds before they sprout, will we ever start to live fully.