Having Doubts is Normal
May 30, 2021
“When they saw him, they worshiped, but some doubted.”
from Matthew 28:16-20
Jesus has led his disciples up a high mountain. The disciples had witnessed the Lord crucified only 40 days earlier; then, 3 days later, he rose from the dead and appeared to them numerous times. He is about to ascend into heaven, and as the group catches sight of Jesus in his glory they all fall down to the ground to worship. This is the first time the disciples truly acknowledge Jesus as God, and Jesus does not object. He is truly God.
But there is an issue here. As Matthew (who is writing this account) falls down to the ground, he notices out of the corner of his eye that some in the group are hesitating. Some still had some doubts about worshipping Jesus as God!
Here we see part of God’s plan revealed in our lives. Every single effort the Lord makes in this world and in our lives individually will always have room for doubt. Even when he was alive, walked through walls, even rose from the dead; always, God leaves room for doubt. And this is absolutely essential for us in our walk of faith on earth, for if God made his presence known in such a way as to not leave some room for doubt, then we would lose our free will.
God arranges everything so that if a person does not want to see God, he can have that option and pursue it rationally. To make this choice without coercion, without knowing fully our reward, out of faith and love, is essential to the test of life. The moment we see the Lord after death and realize fully that he does exist and does love us, the game of life on earth is over, and so is the time for merit: the time to love without seeing, the time to make a sacrifice for others, the time to act selflessly, the time to have faith in trials, all over. Now is the time to choose Jesus without seeing, while we have time.
One need only look at the miracle of the sun at Fatima in May of 1913, documented by the local socialist newspaper (not a fan of the church!), to realize God exists. Thousands of people saw the sun dance and then appear to fall to the ground. It was terrifying to them! But the ground, which had been muddy from excessive rain, was dry at the end of this event. Those who choose not to believe, those for whom the idea of a creator is repulsive to them, have attributed the thousands of people who experienced this to “mass hysteria.”
Another good example is the tilma of Our Lady of Guadalupe. It is so miraculous it leaves little doubt God exists, if one should only choose to investigate. What signs of the Lord’s presence and love can you find in your life? Remember that doubts are normal. Faith is a gift, and God frequently hides himself so we will grow by our struggles.