9 Which is easier, to say to the paralytic, “Your sins are forgiven”, or to say, “Stand up and take your mat and walk”?10 But so that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins’—he said to the paralytic— 11‘I say to you, stand up, take your mat and go to your home.’ 12 And he stood up, and immediately took the mat and went out before all of them; so that they were all amazed and glorified God,
This passage brings many questions to my mind. Why can’t we trust in God and Jesus? What makes us doubt? And how do we deal with this doubt? In the Episcopal Church, we are blessed to have three strongholds of our faith--tradition, scripture, and reason. God has also given us memory, reason, and skill to use to process our world and faith. But it is still hard not to ask God why me? Or why do people suffer? Or why do Christians persecute others? Or why do other faiths persecute Christians?
Questioning God is not new nor is it un-Christian. Many people in the Bible had doubts, including St. Thomas, Gideon, Sarah and Abraham; yet God proved them wrong in their doubts. He showed Himself to be greater than the doubts and fears of humans.
I know that I have questioned many things in my spiritual life and have lived sometimes in an uncertain place where I did not have a definitive answer; yet my faith allowed me to be in that in-between space until I could muddle through. The answer to many of these questions is that God knows us intimately and has a plan for us even if we do not know what it is and cannot see around the next corner.
I saw this happen in my life when I was looking for a job and I prayed for the right job for me in the right place for my family. And, lo and behold, my prayers were answered. I got a great job with Pearson Education where my skills and abilities are used to their fullest in Huntsville, Alabama, which is a great place to live and still close to my family. So, asking questions of God or sometimes being doubtful does not diminish your faith; in fact, sometimes it makes it stronger.