Today, I want to talk about something that doesn’t get talked about enough…our faith and the things we don’t talk about. That sentence sounds funny, but there’s nothing funny about the silence of Christ-followers in areas of faith that need explaining and deep conversations in. Here are just 5 of these…I know that there are many more.
- Doubting is Normal
I used to think that there was something wrong with me because I struggled with doubts within my faith. I thought I was the only one who struggled this way, until I met other Christians who were honest and allowed themselves to be vulnerable. Only then did I realize that our faith journey frequently possess places in which we experience doubts. Talking about it helped, and I began to realize I wasn’t the only one struggling through these areas of doubts.
- Prayer isn’t always answered…in the way that you think it should be.
This might seem obvious, but I don’t think we talk about prayer, REAL prayer enough. Prayer isn’t about communicating with some magical genie, or shaking a magic 8 ball to get the desired answer that you’re looking for. Sometimes prayer doesn’t turn out the way that we expect it to. That doesn’t mean that God isn’t listening or that He doesn’t care, it just means that the answer could be “no” or it could be answered at a much later date. It might seem cliche’ but God’s time isn’t always how we view time or how things should happen, but He’s still there for us. God still cares, and if truth be told, that is very tough to hear when loved ones are taken from us when we prayed and prayed and prayed for them to be healed and they weren’t. So does prayer shape our faith or doesn’t work in tandem to it? Just remember, that just because our prayers weren’t answered, it doesn’t mean that God isn’t accessible or listening.
- Not all “Christians” can be trusted
Many of us learn this the hard way from time to time, but not all Christians ACTUALLY care about you or will invest their time in your life. Be mindful of this. I am certainly not advocating that we do not trust other Christians, but be aware of who you confide in and use your common sense. Yes, we ought to be vulnerable before other Christians, but if the “Christians” that you are around don’t encourage, or share their lives with you, then perhaps you should be careful not to overshare. There might even be times where you should seek out other groups of Christians who might be more compassionate and attentive. Find Christ-followers who will build you up, challenge you and edify your walk with Christ. Proverbs 4:23 applies to your mentors and peers as well, so guard your heart!
- Real Struggles aren’t shared in church…most of the time.
This goes hand in hand with the trust issues of Church as well as doubting – no one wants to be seen as vulnerable or struggling in their faith, when in reality we all struggle from time to time. Why can’t we talk about real issues in church? I think we need to break the notion that we have to show up on Sunday (or any other day you go to Church) and have everything together in your life, in in reality LIFE is messy! Why can’t we be honest about this? Until we stop putting up fake facades and wear masks in church, we will never see growth!
**I would like to call out the picture perfect Christian who never struggles with anything and looks down their nose at anyone who does struggle – STOP IT! You aren’t helping anyone, in fact you are preventing growth from happening. Also, I would call out your lie – if you’re alive you face struggles in life…so get over your prim and proper pious self and help others in their faith and stop pretending that you’ve got it all worked out!**
- Sin and Consequences of Sin is REAL.
Lastly, I wish to tread carefully here.
Why don’t we tackle the topic of sin in Church? Why don’t we talk about it? Maybe it’s because we don’t want to guilt people into making changes? Perhaps we also don’t talk about sin because it shouldn’t always be our focal point, but to not talk about it at all is to all of our detriment. We cannot NOT talk about sin. Secondly, there are consequences to sin even after confession, redemption and reconciliation. Similarly to the long term effects on the body when someone smokes or drinks in excess for long periods of their lives – it eventually catches up to them. Sin does the same thing. We cannot stay silent on sin…because if we love our Church and the people in it, we must lovingly (emphasis on LOVINGLY) talk about the effects of sin, because assuredly it is very real as are the effects.
These are just 5 things about faith no one talks about…I know that there are more, but this is just a primer to that conversation. What should we also talk more about? Like and comment below to join the conversation! Tell us what YOU think! Together we can ponder these things and hopefully better our lives!