doubt

Do Your Students Really Feel Ashamed for Doubting?

Do Your Students Really Feel Ashamed for Doubting?

In the not so distant past, one of the dominant discussions permeating throughout student ministry consisted of the tension between doubt and shame. Does the church bestow shame - either implicitly or explicitly - upon students who doubt?

Perhaps, among certain cultures, certain geographical locations, certain groups of people who interpret Scripture a particular way, certain networks and denominations of churches - perhaps - but I believe that this paradigm of discipleship is fading fast into the distant background. 

Is Doubt a Healthy Catalyst for Faith Formation?

Is Doubt a Healthy Catalyst for Faith Formation?

While I attended seminary at Princeton, a new wave of research began surfacing that asked the question: "Is Doubt a Healthy Catalyst for Faith Formation?"

For some, this was a welcomed question that allowed discussion on a crucial topic. It is a daily issue for those of us who serve in professional ministry, especially with adolescents and young adults. I even know older adults with much more life experience and a deep faith, however, who still wrestle with thoughts of doubt. 

I would go so far to surmise that all people to some extent wrestle with doubt regarding matters of faith, such as the existence of God, the means of salvation, and the redemption of all things. It is a very real part of our human existence. Even the father in the Book of Mark chapter 9 exclaims, "I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief!"

No doubt that doubt is real. 

Yet, I want to pose the question: Is doubt healthy for faith formation?