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Παρασκευή, 6 Ιουλίου 2018

Q: As hard as I try to hold on to my faith, I sometimes go through periods of doubt. Can you give me any advice?


A: Having faith and professing faith are often two separate issues. It is usually far easier to say what it is that one believes rather than to actually believe it in your heart. This is because the very nature of faith presents such a difficulty to the frailty of our human condition; posing a constant struggle that all Christians must grapple with.

St. Paul defines our faith as being, "the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen" (Hebrews 11:1). Therefore, by its sheer definition and utter intangibility, faith seems to automatically dictate that you will undergo moments (or periods) of doubt throughout life.  However, you must remember that maintaining ones faith doesn't revolves around the suppression of doubt, but rather the overcoming of doubt; and no one can overcome doubt unless they go through it. One might even go as far to say that a person of faith who has never experienced doubt is really not a person of faith, because this is how closely these two polarities have come to be linked.

In the end, there is no easy answer to your question; nor is there a quick solution to the problem. The school of faith is not a triumphal march but a journey marked by daily struggle and suffering; this is why our Lord likened it to the "bearing of one's cross." It seems that all of us, including the Saints, must traverse the same dry and arid deserts of doubt in order to reach a lush and fertile oasis of faith before ultimately reaching the hoped-for Promised Land.

Fr. John

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