Persistent, obnoxious, troubling and aggravating; these are just a few of the words which describe one of the biggest enemies we face as Christians. They seemingly come out of nowhere and flash through our thoughts as a meteorite. Many times we are only vaguely aware of their presence while other times we know full well what they are up to. At times we want to swat them as we would a fly and at other times we shriek when they appear as if a mouse ran through the house.
Of all the things that cross our minds, one of the most dangerous is doubts. Doubt is what caused Peter to cease walking on the water. Doubt is what gave Thomas quite a dubious reputation among the disciples. Doubt caused Saul and his army to quiver in the sight of Goliath. Doubt plagued Moses as he tried to live up to God’s calling.
Doubt is what the enemy used to weaken Eve in the Garden which led to her and Adam’s open disregard of the Word of God. Doubt has afflicted God’s people ever since Adam and Eve and continues to wreck ministries, marriages and families even now. The seeds of doubt that are planted in our minds are simple questions such as “did God really say”, “can I really do this” or “what if it doesn’t work”. These innocuous sounding questions are actually fiery darts sugar coated to appear harmless.
We may not be able to stop doubts from crossing our minds but we certainly can refrain from considering them. It is only when we actually allow a doubt to lodge in our thinking that we get in trouble. When a doubt is considered it opens the door to worry which in turn ends up as fear. Sometimes this process takes days and other times it takes seconds. Either way, the end result is the negation of the promises of God in our life.
Whether it is a solitary doubt that shows up at our door disguised as a well meaning neighbor or a hoard of doubts intent on breaking down our door; we must slam the door shut and never allow them into our home. Doubts are incredibly aggravating because they pester us and won’t take no for an answer. In many respects they are as the telemarketer who calls every day at suppertime even when told not to.
Ultimately it is fear which defeats us (individually and collectively), but before fear becomes entrenched and ruins our lives, doubts first arrive with the goal of getting their foot in the door. This is why we must slam the door shut anytime doubts show up. Just say NO, I am not interested. Just say NO, and slam the door or hang up the phone. Never reason with a doubt or it will win, just demand it leave.
Doubts cannot be prohibited from stopping by but they can be refused entrance into our home. We may not be able to stop them from bothering us, but we can refuse to entertain them. Doubts are unwanted pests and must never be allowed into our hearts lest they then call in the rest of their party which are the most dangerous worries and fears.