This is a question that we will all face at some point in our lives, and for most of us probably several times. Sometimes it is one of those doubts that creeps in which the devil amplifies to get us to question God. At other times it is a normal human response to a crisis we face where we wonder where God is and why things have happened or not happened.
What if we open ourselves up to God about something and we find that his promises don’t seem to work? What if when I pray about my marriage or my kids who have turned away from God or my job that is slowly killing me, God seems not to care or is way too late? Why would God have allowed certain things to happen to me or to someone I love when he is supposed to be all-powerful and all loving?
If God is who the Bible says he is and if Jesus is the Son of God who rose from the dead, then there is no evidence or question, or experience or secret in my life that is too big for him to handle or redeem. Yet our experience of believing this by faith and holding on to it in the mess and brokenness of life with confidence, is at times very stretching. Can he be trusted with all things and is he good?
I often think of Peter in the middle of the storm when he sees Jesus walking on the water and lays down the challenge to him, perhaps without thinking Jesus would take it up. If you are who you say you are Jesus, then let me come out to you and do the impossible. Let me walk on the water. Jesus said – ok come! Peter is now faced with a difficult choice. Does he trust Jesus? Is Jesus good and will he save him or let him drown? The only way to find out was to overcome his fear and every fibre of his body that told him otherwise, and to step out into the storm. Can you put yourself in that place? What would his heart rate have been? How big a knot would have been in his stomach? I’m not sure I would have had the faith and courage to do that. But he did. He trusted Jesus and he walked on water – even if just for a few seconds.
Even when he began to doubt and his brain caught up with his spirit and he looked around at the circumstances and began to sink, Jesus still reached out and caught him. So in our doubt and mess we need that level of faith in Jesus, sometimes just to take the next step. I can’t tell you what that looks like, but Jesus is still the same and that can only be tested by giving everything to him. And even when we do that and begin to doubt, we beleive that he is still powerful to reach out to us and save us – because he is good and our doubt doesn’t stop him saving. God is always greater than our fear, but learning that takes courage and faith.
Grace and Peace - Garry