A lady, foreign to the USA, took a flight from Los Angeles to New York. She said that she sat by a pleasant American man who, “Talked for all five hours of the flight.” He didn’t say exactly what he did for a living, but his stories indicated that he worked for the US Government in some sort of security role. When the plane came to a stop, she turned to the man and said, “You know, you never did ask me what I do for a living.” He said, “I just figured that you would interrupt if you wanted me to know. So, what do you do?” She said, “I work for the Russian Embassy.” At which point he gathered his bags and left her presence as quickly as possible. She said that she lay in bed that night praying for two things. Firstly, that she wasn’t being tracked as a spy, and secondly, that the Lord would bring change in her attitudes—especially regarding the potential consequences of her sense of humour.
One of the confusions over the concept of “doubt” is that a Christian’s “self-doubt” is often mixed in with doubts about God. Though not unrelated, it is a far cry from “doubting the existence of God,” to “doubting my ability to move on in my faith.”
However, there are tell-tale signs. Some of them, as the (true) story above suggests, are our reactions to the circumstances around us. Viewed carefully, they can say a lot about the trajectory of our spiritual growth. I too have spent too much time trying to be funny instead of praying earnestly for words that might save the soul in front of me.
The devil is very effective at installing default settings in our thinking. Thus, we must daily re-set our minds on things above. It is the Bible that teaches us how to have “the mind of Christ” and to “walk as he walked.” The apostle Paul told the Corinthians church:
“But we all, with unveiled faces, looking as in a mirror at the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as from the Lord, the Spirit” (2 Corinthians 3:18).
Indeed, He is able to change us for the better.