Friday, August 6, 2010

Days of Doubt

"Stop doubting and believe."  John 20:27 (NIV)

Do you ever have doubting days?  Days that you doubt yourself?  Days that you doubt God's call on your life?  Days that you doubt that God even has a call on your life?

I'm having one today.  I shouldn't be surprised.  Last weekend I attended Proverbs 31 Ministries' She Speaks conference...along with 607 other women that feel a call from God to write, speak, or lead in women's ministry.  It was outstanding!  Wonderful worship...fabulous speakers...amazing testimonies...precious prayer moments...great girl time!  It was chock full of encouragement, equipping, Spiritual empowering.  You have to know that the enemy isn't going to let an opportunity to "bring you down" after a mountaintop experience like that pass him by.  Today he started planting the seeds of doubt in my mind.

Now I must admit that when I sat down at the opening session, I was struck with the thought, "What on earth am I doing here??"  All of those perfectly coiffed, stylin' women with really cute shoes...and purses...and belts...and flashy jewelry...surely had book proposals ready for meeting with an editor or agent...or a perfectly polished speech to present to their speaker groups...or some incredible vision for the women's ministry at their church.  Their testimonies all seemed extraordinary (spoken like Angela Thomas)...truly worthy of sharing.  And I thought, "Why am I here?"

And then God answered...through a workshop that will be tremendous preparation for an upcoming women's retreat speaking engagement.  Through the words of other writers and speakers who shared their fears, doubts, and inadequacies.  Through newly formed friendships with Jennifer and Terri...fellow writers...joined "by chance" to critique each other's writing.  Lord, thank You for bringing them into my life!!!  By allowing me the privilege of hugging the necks and seeing the lovely smiles of women that I've prayed for, yet never met face to LeAnn and Marybeth.  Through God strengthening the bond of camaraderie and fellowship with my writer's group girlfriends, Cara and Tatum.  Only a God like ours could have orchestrated the time we shared.  Then there were the times shared with my dear sisters in Christ, Tara and Wendy, over breakfast and lunch...blessing upon blessing.

Yes, I was supposed to be there.  I remember it now.  And this written trip down memory lane has been good for me.

And yet I feel that tugging of doubt.

But through a little Scripture searching, I see that I'm in pretty good company.  The first, obvious, example is Thomas...a disciple of Christ.  He doubted.  (John 20)  And then there was Peter, another disciple....another doubter.  (Matthew 14)  When "the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain where Jesus had told them to go...they saw Him, they worshipped Him; but some doubted." (Matthew 28:16-17)  Before Jesus ascended to heaven, He asked the eleven, "Why are you troubled, and why do doubts rise in your minds?" (Luke 24:38)  Doubters.  Many have gone before us...and they were encouraged to "Stop doubting and believe."

As Paul challenged the Galatian church (in chapter 5:7-8), "You were running a good race.  Who cut in on you and kept you from obeying the truth?  That kind of persuasion does not come from the One who calls you."  "The One who calls you is faithful and He will do it." (1 Thessalonians 5:24)  He has given us His Word "so that the man [or woman] of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work." (2 Timothy 3:17)

We need to remember Paul's words in 1 Corinthians 1:26-30, "Brothers [and Sisters], think of what you were when you were called.  Not many of you were wise by human standards; not many were influential; not many were of noble birth.  But God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong.  He chose the lowly things of this world and the despised things-and the things that are not-to nullify that things that are, so that no one may boast before Him."  Let's trust in "His divine power [that] has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and goodness."  (2 Peter 1:3) 

May God "equip [us] with everything good for doing His will, and may He work in us what is pleasing to Him."  (Hebrews 13:21)

Well, I hope that your days of doubt may be mine...through the encouragement of God's Word...into days of determination to believe!

Lord, I just have to say thank You for Your "amazing grace that saved a wretch like me."  Thank You for loving me, for drawing me, for entrusting me with Your message to share...however You see fit.  Help me to believe...and to obey.  I love you.


Marybeth said...

This was encouraging to me Kristi! We all doubt from time to time. I loved hearing your thoughts on how we must respond.

Thanks for being an encouragement to me!!

Esther said...

Thanks for this, Kristi. How timely I found your card today and checked out your blog. I have many days of doubt too :)
So glad we met at She Speaks.

cara said...

Go immediately to your door and say criss crossingly "You shall not pass!"

I love your authenticity in this post because it was what I felt every single day during the month of July as I was preparing for She Speaks. (I wish I knew the pass move prior to then!)

You are so loved, gifted and amazing. I was so blessed by our time together. I am so grateful to God for you, your example and your love.

love you sister, cara

Janice said...

I too have been drowning in doubt (and fear) recently - so thank you for your transparency and encouraging blog-posting....I am also very encouraged by my buddy Moses who most assuredly had a basketful of insecurity/doubt/fear as he pondered what God had asked him to do in Exodus 3. Hebrews 12:1-2 comes to mind as well --- 'Throw off all that hinders.........' I pray that we can be like David....and throw off the things that don't "fit" who we are in Christ (he threw off the coat of armor and helmet)and just show up, armed in FAITH, to do what we are called to do w/o giving the enemy a foothold to hold us down. May we sling the stone fashioned for us and aim High! I am blessed by your postings & by your friendship!