About the Author

Robin is the author of For All Who Wander, her relatable memoir about wrestling with doubt that reads much like a conversation with a friend. She's as Southern as sugar-shocked tea, married to her college sweetheart, and has three children. An empty nester with a full life, she's determined to...

Related Resources & Gifts
Find more at DaySpring.com
Related
Resources
& Gifts
Find more at
DaySpring.com
Recent Posts

Reader Interactions

Comments

  1. Robin,
    Once again, you’ve met my heart right where it needed to be met. If there is one apostle I can relate to, it’s Thomas. I always looked at this as kind of a “lesser than” approach. If I was a “better” Christian, I wouldn’t have these doubts. In my head I say, “Look back at what all the the Lord has done for you – how faithful He’s been….how can you have any doubts?” Guilt, guilt, guilt. Some people have told me that they think I have a great deal of faith, which is nice, but I feel like responding, “If you only knew all the doubts and questions that run around in my head!!”

    I LOVE this quote about doubts being evidence that God is wooing me – creating a path to know Him better. This is getting printed (if that’s okay) and posted on my fridge!! I’m a pretty deep thinker (often too deep for my own good). Sometimes I wish I could just remain on the surface and have the simple trust and faith of a child. I believe God wants this from us. But, He made me as I am and just possibly He is wanting to use it to draw me and my many ponderings into a closer walk with Him. I want to know Him more. I often say, “Lord, I believe. Help my unbelief.”

    One thing I do know is that if doubts produce guilt….they are red flags that the enemy is at work. If we doubt or ask why and are immediately plagued with guilt and condemnation, that’s not God at work, that’s the enemy trying to isolate us from God rather than letting Him draw us into Himself. Wonderful post, Robin! Just what I needed this morning.
    Blessings to you,
    Bev xx

    • Bev, yes!! I DO know that condemnation is a tool of the enemy that brings defeat; but conviction is a conduit to confession and repentance, bringing us closer to the Lord. So much of our battle is in our head, in unhealthy thought patterns, negative self-talk, vain imagination. When we alter our perspective to see through the eyes of Christ, and/or to look at Him, everything can change.

      And of course, if that quote helps–print away! I can’t help but wonder how close it is to the original words I heard; that was 12+ years ago, and my paraphrase is my memory, my interpretation. The heart is the same, but probably not many of the words :). It still ministers to me, though, and brings encouragement when I need it. You and I have similar gratitude for the “Lord, I believe. Help my unbelief” scripture :).

      • Robin,
        I wholeheartedly agree…there is a BIG difference between conviction, which is God’s way of turning us away from destructive behavior and back toward Him and the good path He has set forth for us and which compels us to repent of our misdoing, and condemnation, which is accompanied by false guilt and is from the accuser and serves no useful purpose. One verse that helps me is Romans 8:1: Therefore, there is now NO condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. So thankful for a loving and forgiving God who cares enough about us to disciple and guide us for our own good.
        Blessings,
        Bev

  2. Wow…I resonate with Bev who remarked that our “searching” (isn’t that word so much better than “doubting”)…if our “searching doubts” draw us closer to the ear and the heart of Jesus who wants to compassionately inform and embrace us…that is searching that is drawing our doubts in – like all the fish that the disciples drew in on the side of the boat the night Jesus told them to – again- cast their net in the place that they “doubted”…wow the Spirit must be really spilling something here as I didn’t intend for that to even be written. The words are dropping like raindrops from Heaven. Thank you Lord…you don’t ” drop us” when our hearts utter “doubt drops”…when our mind, in confusion and fog, cannot make sense of the circumstances that bewilder us.

    When Thomas doubted, You did not rebuke or chastise, condemn, ignore or shout “out Thomas! If you doubt, you’re out!”

    No…that is the evil one as Bev said. The one who prowls and tries to stop us from hearing Your whispers to our hearts that need Your courage and clarity and Spirit gift(s) to settle our raging or gnawing doubts. Yes…I agree with Bev…that if our doubts, ponderings and struggles cause condemnation, we need to draw closer to The Loving One who brings us closer to better understand… for “there is NO condemnation for those that are in Christ Jesus.

    Another thing I was thinking as I am writing this is how humble and inviting Jesus was toward Thomas. And let’s not forget Thomas’ doubt was on the heels of inexpressible trauma,grief and shock from their best friend being murdered. Imagine the bewilderment – imagine their PTSD: Post Traumatic Saviour Distress!

    It is absolutely so beautiful to see how Jesus makes His gentle appearance inviting His Peace to rest upon them…as He says: Peace be with you. And then imagine being invited by Jesus to touch and enter the wounds that were made for them.

    If we on earth are invited to a gallery showing, a sport event or such where we get to touch the celebrity, author, artist or their things – hockey sticks, art works…even just seeing them close up makes many and any joyful.

    Imagine Thomas being able to reach inside the wounds in Christ’s side and hands…and to see Christ’s Gentle eyes inform that He did that for Thomas…This is what He does. This is who He is. When Christ died, we became priveleged to be His son or daughter that “He loves with an everlasting love…He calls us and we are His.” He made an appointment with Thomas.

    I always felt like Thomas was the “bad disciple” for not believing…the one “on the out(side) because of doubt”. I always felt ashamed of my struggles and seasons of doubt and confused fog.

    But as I am growing spiritually, I realize with Christ – He invites himself in …to investigate Christ’s wounds. We can investigste all and any doubts with Him. We are drawn in to get closer and to feel God’s presence…and be blessed by His Peace.

    Christ is so good. So opposite of who we are intrinsically. Yet, when we experience His captivating love in this way, He chisels our hearts and minds to become more like Him…allowing us yo experience this unconditional love yhat transforms us into loving others as He loves us…in our doubts, fears, failings, questions.

    Did not Christ say “you will find Me when you search for me with all your heart”…our doubts draw us closer to the answers because He becomes the Answer.

    What a blessing to share with others who love him. Let us bring our doubts to His altar…our Father’s arms are open wide. We exchange our doubts for His Peace.

    Blessings in your “doubting search” that leads to Abundant Peace sisters.

  3. Hi Janine,

    Sometimes I wonder if Jesus called 12 so that *anyone* might find themselves in one of those who followed Him. It is gift to be encouraged by those who knew Jesus, who give us hope as we watch how He loved them anyway.

  4. Sounds like Jesus is “growing you up”
    I too had my “what a REAL christian looks like pattern” trouble was, the older I got the more I realized it didn’t fit, there is not a one-size-fits-all Christian code. Praise God! If I can just do one thing right, let it be letting God be God and me His ever learning child.

  5. A great post. People don’t talk about doubts enough. Yet God is big enough for all our questions. When I voiced mine to a favorite prof he said “If God can’t handle your questions then He isn’t a big enough God is He?” Such comfort in a comment he doesn’t remember even making. I asked!(;

  6. I’d love for you to share how God has met you when you needed Him most!

    One time God showed up in my life a way anyone could “see.”
    I was trying to work through, and get past, my traumatic childhood. There were demons inside me created by abuse. I had post traumatic stress disorder, or PTSD, and could not remember long stretches of time. There were gaps in my memory years long – no holidays, not sure what my teacher’s names were, no memories at all.
    One day, a memory came back. In no uncertain terms. I remembered I had been physically abused, but now remembered I had been incestuously abused as well.
    Remembering one incident allowed many others to flood my brain. It was completely overwhelming. Physically, emotionally, spiritually. I literally pulled my knees up to my chest, put my arms around myself, and started rocking on my chair.
    What happened next is God showed up.
    I don’t remember how I got home that day. How to do anything seemed cloudy. All I could think was “If I’m not the person I thought I was, then is anything in this whole world real? Am I real? Am I even here?”
    God was.
    I remember waking up in my bed. My friend Wendy by my bedside. There was a string tied from my bed to the bathroom, so I wouldn’t get lost going. It had been 3 days since my memories came back. During that time, I was never left alone. Not by God and not by the people God put in my life.
    The women in my group therapy session had taken shifts. I was given water, allowed to sleep, and helped to the bathroom. For 3 days. To me, this was a crystal clear, “seeable”example of God being all knowing, and giving me what he knew I needed.
    Now, I don’t feel the need to “see” or hear God in a physical way. I see and hear him within my very self. My belief in him is just a part of me.

  7. It’s ​certainly true. I remembered when I was a young Christian, I had this question that was so loud in my mind that I walked into church one day and just asked the question: “God, are you concerned about my need?” Right at that moment, my Pastor who was standing at the pulpit beginning to preach, these words flew out of his mouth and right into my face, “God is concerned about your needs!” I stood there in awe of the powerful manifestation of His presence that changed me forever. Thank you for bringing back such a good memory of who He is. Shalom!

  8. Thank-you for your honesty, and encouragement Robin,

    I hope that you all have a blessed day,

    Penny

  9. I recently wrote a blog post called ” Me? A Doubting Thomas? ” So many of us fall into that trap, but the truth is Jesus wasn’t offended by the question. He understands humanity. It is unbelief that turns your heart toward evil. I try to practice what I preach, so I know how we get over into wondering when He gave us the answers already. I have to go back and read my own words, but more importantly His.

  10. I have doubts all the time. The biggest doubt I have is doubting my salvation. I know that I am saved, but then at times in my life I’ll think, “Oh no, what if I really don’t believe this”, or when I’m discouraged i’ll doubt if I really want to keep following Jesus and I’ll doubt if I really want God to get the glory. I doubt myself all the time, “Do I really want to share the Gospel, “Am i really doing this for God’s glory”, and the list goes on. Does anyone have any advice?

    • Dearest Marymargaret,

      One time God spoke to me so audibly as I was teaching my children. He always shows up TO ME when I think I am imparting Wisdom to others…that’s when he parts my ears, heart and sometimes hairline…and I get a voice so clear and concise…it slows diwn like an old LP on the wrong speed. It is AWEstounding…when Jesus was eagerly tending to the paralytic in scripture, He stopped and turned around to the Pharisees and directly spoke eluding and comFIRMing: ” I know what you are thinking”…or why do you think…….because Jesus told the man your sins are forgiven…for really – Christ knows the major fracture in any of His children is not bodily …but spiritual healing is most necessary – therefore, He wanted to cleanse the paralytic of his sins as He was healing. I love how Christ said to the Pharisees that were always trying to trap him : “just so you KNOW that the Son of Man has power on earth to forgive sins.” He turned to face them and told them that he knew what they were thinking and He conFIRMed Who He Is in that moment. He rarely spoke that kind of forceFULL revelation. It is a reMINDer…a reKINDer of Christ – to us – that He knows all the thoughts of our minds and hearts.

      Yet He wants to minister to us. He longs to…because only when we are truly aware of our sins and willing to confess and interact with Him – can we fully understand His Gentle Grace and love poured out in that process…only then can we really be used in ways that actually bring Him Glory – as you are saying “Giving God rhe Glory”…and we unite with Him in that and are so content to be a part of it because He has transformed us …and then service and thanks toward Him becomes a part of our joy. Not striving to be noticed by others. Or known by Him.

      Nor approved of. We can’t EARN his Love. We LEARN His Love…and He proved it to us…and He said: It is finished.

      There is nothing more to do except BE His Beloved and to “love others as He loved us.”

      So …I would recommend that every time you have a thought, word or deed that you know is NOT aligning with His loving attributes, character or conduct, say it.

      Just tell him.

      Reveal it. He know it anyways.

      He wants you to know it. He wants us to “be holy as He is”. So Marymargaret:

      When you “doubt your salvation” as you suggest- say..”Lord, thank you for loving me Marymargaret so much that you endured such unbelievable shame and pain for me. Thank you that I am worth it to you.”

      When you doubt as you are discouraged, reveal it: “Lord…I am so discouraged but you told Joshua to “be strong and of good courage…may you give me some of that courage because it is tough.

      When you doubt that you are doing things for the right intention, say so. Ask Him to take away the insecurity that may be trying to rob you of doing service for God’s Honour. Ask Him to reveal your heart’s motives and intentions. The disciples all wanted favour and to be “his FAVOURite”. They were all wanting to know who was THE favourite. Truth is: Marymargaret is…and Janine…and all the ladies (and any men!) who know Him…even the ones who don’t know Him yet.

      The best times I have had with Christ have been the times I have come to Him with my shallow thoughts, embittered disappointments, raging sorrow…and I was met with a Gentle Christ – the Prince of Peace.

      “May the words of my mouth and the mediatation of my hearts be acceptable in your sight” …2nd part …2nd “pHEART” is the whipped topping:” oh Lord, my Strength and My Redeemer.”

      Our confession is for the Holy Spirit to convict us…but God’s intention is for gentle forgiveness that allows us to become convinced that we are loved…not condemned.

      And then restored.

      In unity. With Christ. Through forgiveness.

      What an AWEmazing Christ who serves Marymargaret up His lavish Love. Because he adores you and you are His daughter whom He loves.

      Let us not be afraid to “go to tge throne of Grace…so that we may receive help in times of trouble.”

      He waits for us with arms wide open. He hears all and says: I am right here for you.

      I hope that was helpful.

      Many blessings…as you reveal your doubts and have Him turn them upside-down and inside out to reveal from what you tried to conceal…the best, most shining parts of yourself.

      He takes our dark and empty and fills us up and shines us up radiant. Go forth and shine Marymargaret.

      You are His radiant Light right where you are.

  11. This post met me exactly where I currently am in my walk. I can so relate to Thomas!! He didn’t want to HEAR about everyone else’s “experience”, he wanted his OWN encounter with Jesus!! I’ve prayed several times lately: Lord I believe! But help my unbelief!! I don’t want to miss one thing Jesus has for me and if my doubts and questions can draw me closer to Him then I pray he keeps my eyes and ears wide open!

  12. Robin,

    I was raised Methodist/Presbyterian. Their teachings are good, but not completely correct. It wasn’t until I started going to a “Christian” Church that the real truth set in. I began to research and understand that being baptized meant immersion-not just sprinkling as a baby. Also learned that God commands us to have Communion each Lord’s day-not just once a month or so.

    That being said-I know I was a “mediocre” Christian for years. Didn’t have a relationship with Christ. Now through reading the Bible daily and hearing the word preached 3-5 times a week I understand better. Yes, the evil one prowls around like a roaring lion. He seeks to devour all. Jesus gentle meek and mild does not condemn. Go ahead ask your questions of Jesus and He will gently answer you.

    Blessings 🙂

  13. Do you put your pastor above the Bible? Because the Bible says anything that doesn’t come from faith is sin, and also that the person who doubts is like a wave of the sea, shouldn’t expect to receive anything from the Lord, etc. Jesus didn’t say: “Now look Thomas, it’s ok to doubt. I’m not offended by it!”