Have you ever doubted or wholly not believed in God?
If so, that’s okay. Doubt is normal, it’s natural. It’s a common psychological response to stuff that we struggle to reason with.
Even people that saw the risen Christ with their own two eyes still had their doubts, as Thomas reminds us (John 20:19-31). It goes to show that people have been struggling to believe in God for some 2,000 years, and if we, too, doubt, we shouldn’t feel any different or lesser of a person because of it.
Thomas’ encounter alone was not enough for him (or others) to believe. For them, seeing did not equate to believing. At least not until they saw a little more evidence, heard one more eye-witness account, or found one more piece of compelling facts or historical artifacts.
There have been and will always be people like that: perpetual skeptics, people wanting one more item or sign of proof, or needing just a little bit more to become full believers. We must accept that, and accept them too. As God would not turn anyone away, neither should we, even doubters and skeptics.
There is so much in this world that points to God’s existence. One example that I absolutely love is an article that I read recently from the Wall Street Journal that cites how a team of Australian scientists have discovered that there are some essential components to spider venom. These eight properties allow it to work as a better painkiller than morphine. On top of that it would come without any of the negative side effects or drawbacks such as addiction.
The crazy thing is that this is found naturally in some of Australia’s most venomous spiders. Yes, something created by God still works better than anything we could make or concoct on our own. How amazing and indicative is that?
These types of examples are all throughout nature, and the more I learn about the world, the more astonished I am with that as I am with God. This should, at least, reinforce our belief and faith in God.
What then, can we do, if we are a believer?
Assuredly, we can tell our own stories and share them with others. Let them know how our relationship with God is, how it has affected our life, and how we have seen God in this world. We can also point them to ways in which we have found God; and we can attempt to connect others to the marvelousness of God through our own love of this world, of others, of nature and of everything and anything God has created, which includes us.
There is no greater proof of God’s existence than the feeling in our hearts, the knowledge in our minds, and the love and compassion of this church community.
To top all of that off, we have all of the amazing creations in nature itself: from shooting stars that make believers out of friends to venom from God-created spiders that is better than any synthetic we, as a very intellectual species, have been able to create. Oh yeah, and that whole Jesus guy too.
What can we do if we are a skeptic?
I would encourage you to keep on searching. Keep on digging, exploring, and hoping for that moment where it all comes together. I cannot tell you exactly how to find God, as God often appears in unexpected places in unexpected ways.
All I and fellow believers can do is try to point you in the right direction, encourage you to hear our story, read more of the Bible, and take a gander at this world God has created.
All in all, maybe we should thank Thomas for doubting and letting us know that it is okay to doubt; and that God will never turn us away for asking heartfelt questions of Him.