The shower head hissed and misted the small bathroom in room 1805. The heat and humidity eroded the cement between my eyelids. As they shimmied unstuck, the shower curtain appeared. Behind that white veil was my morning sanctuary. My burden weighed heavy on me that morning, and I eagerly stepped over the faux-porcelain lip and slid the curtain shut behind me.
“God,” I said with a salty mixture of disdain and discomfort, “I don’t believe You’re real.”
I let the water splash onto my chest. I wondered if I was the only Christian who’d ever said that. I blew the water that had filled my mouth into the downward-flowing cone spouting from the shower head.
“Today, I just don’t think You’re out there. And I don’t feel You in here.”
I turned around and let the water beat against my back. I folded my arms and let my eyes get lost in the tub floor. I wonder if anyone else felt that way or if I was even allowed to feel that.
“I want to believe You’re real, but today I don’t. And if You are real, You’re going to have to change my heart to make me believe it.”
Day after day after day, I would do this. Wake up. Shower. Tell God I didn’t believe in Him. I didn’t get it…I had accepted Jesus as my savior almost two years ago. I thought I had already made the decision to believe. Yet there I was, a freshman in college holding onto my faith by a thread. I couldn’t help but feel I had taken a wrong turn somewhere; I felt lost and alone.
Maybe you’re struggling with doubts right now. Maybe you don’t think God would give your mom cancer or let your friend die in a car crash. Maybe you don’t know why God won’t take away your addiction or your abuser. Maybe you’ve been trying too hard for too long and keep having bad things happen to you. Maybe you prayed and prayed and prayed and prayed and…nothing. Maybe the idea of hell or Jesus being the only way to heaven seems preposterous and intolerant.
Wherever you’re at…that’s ok. Your doubt, questions, frustrations are all ok.
You have permission to be exactly where you’re at. You haven’t taken a wrong turn. Doubt is a part of your faith journey. Everyone goes through it at one point or another–or if you’re like me, at many points.
Take heart, though. Believing in Jesus is supposed to be messy business…a wonderful, confusing, marvelous adventure.
While you’re traveling, know that He loves you. Whether it’s too dark to see or too thick to move, God’s with you every step along the way. He will never leave you nor forsake you, and He promises to comfort you through the tough spots. He will leave His entire flock to find you when you’re lost. He is faithful and always waiting for you when you wander. He is patient with your fears and frustrations. He invites your doubts and questions. You can lean into Him with ALL of that.
For weeks, I did. I woke up knowing I was going to tell God I doubted Him when I got to the shower. And for weeks, I leaned into Him with those doubts and asked for Him to change my heart. Somewhere along the way, I just started believing again.
Give yourself permission and patience to be wherever you’re at because wherever you’re at is totally ok–even if it’s not where you want to be. Remember whether you feel you’re on top of a mountain or in the wilderness all alone, you’re on your own faith journey with God. Even your doubts are a part of that.
I just challenge you to lean into Him even when you’re lost or afraid or unsure. Pull back the curtain, step in the shower, and talk to Him. Yell at Him. Ask Him. And keep going back even when it feels crazy because He’ll help you find your way.
Where are you at in your faith journey? Do you have doubts, questions, fears, or frustrations?