TITLE: Doubt, Temptation and Faith 1-12-2017
By Sonja Mattison
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Sonja E. Mattison
Doubt, Temptation and Faith
Romans 14:23 (New International Version)
23 But whoever has doubts is condemned if they eat, because their eating is not from faith; and everything that does not come from faith is sin.
Doubt is temptation. It steers us away from belief in the Lord, creates a sense of false belief, and lures us into disbelief. Yes, difficult phenomena may occur, but we still do not have to resort to uncertainty. God confirmed to us since the beginning of time through his word that with praise, worship and obedience His glory will be laid upon us such as he did for a child named Eme.
As a toddler, Eme was faced with possible nemesis – a brain disorder – epilepsy. But, before the disorder seized control of her life, her loving and caring parents sought medical advice, in which medication was prescribed to manage her seizures enough for her to enjoy the beginning of her life – learning about Christ. By the age of six, Eme was familiar with her condition. It seemed as though it did not even exist, thanks to Jesus.
Eme attended a private elementary school where the main focus was honoring Christ. Through Bible study and Chapel, she was encouraged to follow his footsteps as she learned about His love, redemption and salvation. The more she learned she became captivated by the love of Christ, so she chose to study on her own outside of school.
Every night she cradled her leather bound book (the Bible) close, read it, and prayed. Soon, she wished to grow closer to God. She dreamed of becoming an angel. Thus, her faith increased over the years.
Eme continued to be an excellent student, athlete and overall loveable being. Before she knew it, her journey was over at the private school.
After Eme finished her elementary education, she attended a public middle school, which she disliked. It was not so much the school she disliked, but at this point in her life she faced the blues of being an adolescent. This transition was not so easy for Eme. As she was gradually changing, or maturing, she began to question her self-worth and outer beauty so much that she doubted the goodness that that rested in her soul. From this point, she remained an emotional roller coaster (mostly sad) until she graduated from college.
After her graduation her faith was renewed. She felt beautiful and confident and believed that she could accomplish many things and be a success. So, she remained happy. But, three years later Eme was challenged with another setback – a second brain disorder – depression. Her depression was much more difficult to manage. The stabilization seemed so stagnant to Eme that she thought she would never be healed. Her faith had slipped until the point that she blamed God for her illness.
Mark 9:23-24 (New International Version)
23 “‘If you can’?” said Jesus. “Everything is possible for one who believes.”24 Immediately the boy’s father exclaimed, “I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief!”
God works; he works in our favor even when it feels as though we are being ignored.
Eme prayed doubtfully so that her prayers seemed to be overshadowed by a dark cloud with a void. One day she lay in her bed reading “the word.” Oddly, this day the words seemed to have little meaning or have an effect on her heart. Tears of distraught filled her eyes following a shriek of “God, why do you hate me! What have I done!” Her soul had never been so vexed.
Since she was confounded with her faith, she decided to walk in her own ways, cease prayer and let go of the Bible. After making this decision her days began to worsen and were filled with sulkiness and sadness. Most of all, she was numb and depressed.
The days were getting gloomier for Eme. She despised these feelings. So, with shame she reached for her Bible underneath her pillow. She read the scriptures. Again, she sobbed, but this time she wept with tears of joy. She was reassured of God’s love for her. That particular day she concluded doubt was simply meaningless – not prayer.
Isaiah 40:31(New International Version).
But those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.
Because belief in God is the most powerful source in the universe, opposing forces of the universe deceitfully try to disengage our interaction with the Almighty. Hence, if we are not careful, and start to believe in doubt, we can be pulled to the other side – disbelief. We cannot afford to lose sight of the Lord in any way. If we submit to uncertainty, we insult our heavenly father.
If God can, then we can. We are the rock that can move the mountain without being moved. Have no fear, doubt or worry. Choose faith.
*The name Eme has been modified in order to protect the privacy of the original character of this article.
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