Ever feel like bad things always happen to you, or like you just aren’t as lucky as those other people on social media who are living the dream and have it all together?
Ever doubt that things will work out because it seems they never do?
Sometimes, we make things harder for ourselves when all we focus on is the negative. It interferes with our ability to trust God and give Him our cares. Doubt can be crippling.
As someone who’s teetered between pessimism and optimism, I know the back-and-forth can make you emotionally and physically exhausted.
“God, I just want something good to happen in my life for once!” I’ve said before.
Our doubt blinds us from seeing how God is working, and it keeps us from moving forward with determination.
After all, why bother embracing the future when you can’t see what’s ahead or when it seems bleak and uncomfortable? Why trust that things will work out when it seems nothing good ever happens?
You know, we often get stuck on patterns. If there’s a pattern of negative events in our lives, we come to expect negative things, and negativity becomes the lens through which we see life. As humans, we like patterns because they’re predictable. They give us a feeling of control. If we can predict what might happen, then we can prepare for the worst.
But God does not operate according to the predictions of man. His ways are higher.
When we learn to trust that God always has a plan for our lives, then we can turn our doubt into determination—the kind of determination that says, “I will trust in God no matter what happens.”
We say Thomas doubted that Jesus really had risen from the dead with a kind of disdain for Thomas’ attitude, but I’ve always found Thomas relatable here.
Think about it: Jesus Christ, whom the disciples had hoped would help them overthrow the government, was crucified three days prior. Their movement seemed hopeless and crushed. Bad things kept happening. And all of a sudden, a man stood in front of Thomas claiming to be the resurrected Christ. Perhaps many of us, if we had been Thomas in that moment, would feel it was too good to be true. After tragedy and disappointment, we might have responded to Jesus’ resurrection with hesitation and doubt.
Have you ever asked God for a sign if something really was Him?
God, if this is You moving, send me a sign!
Thomas declared that he would not believe until he had seen the scars in Jesus’ hands and touched His spear-pierced side. How did Jesus respond?
“Then saith he to Thomas, Reach hither thy finger, and behold my hands; and reach hither thy hand, and thrust it into my side: and be not faithless, but believing. And Thomas answered and said unto him, My Lord and my God.”John 20:27-28 (KJV)
If we are to see Jesus, we must reach out and touch Him.
If we are to overcome our own doubt and pessimism, we must get closer to Him and believe.
When we study His Word, we begin to hear His voice. When we hear Him, our faith in Him grows. As our faith grows, so does our trust and our confidence in Him.
The more we seek Jesus in determination, the more our doubt will diminish.