The other afternoon, as I took a break from the normal chores, I decided to get some inspiration from Richard Rohr’s Daily Meditation. Without a doubt, Richard’s words leave me with peace, or contemplation; either way, his words are good for the soul.
This particular writing of his was titled: Faith and Doubt Are Not Opposites. There was no hesitation on my part, to delve into this writing, as there seem to be many of us, currently, that feel a bit of both. The feelings of faith and doubt seem like two children doing their best to balance themselves, on the seesaw of life’s playground. Personally, I’m looking for faith to be a bit on the heavier side, in order to stay grounded.
While reading his daily meditation, there was one quote that caused me to pause and reflect, and to write this post. I remember hearing about this quote years ago; however, when I read it, the quote had me reflecting on this current time that we all find ourselves navigating.
The quote was from Mother Teresa, and it was found in some of her writings that she had shared with a spiritual confidant, years ago. Her quote reflected the feelings of doubt that she had experienced for many years. Her words read as follows: “Darkness is such that I really do not see – neither with my mind nor with my reason. – The place of God in my soul is blank. – There is no God in me.” 
Doubt can happen for periods of time, to anyone; especially if one is walking a long and arduous journey. This type of journey tends to be draining of both mental and physical energy. Everything seems tremendously daunting when exhaustion is involved. I believe that there are many that are experiencing this exhaustion, with our current health and political climate. Why would anyone not be expected to have some form of doubt, in the midst of this lingering pain, that is being experienced? Doubt presents itself and is left to grow or be snuffed out. I believe the timeliness to doubt losing its oxygen, has to do with the quality and depth of faith one has, in proportion to the arduous task at hand.
Mother Teresa saw the worst of the worst, day after day. She was a spiritual powerhouse like no other; however, God created her as a human, first. There should be no doubt that she would sometimes question, “why” or “where are You?” She was human.
I wonder what she would say about this COVID-19 crisis, as well as the dissension in humanity, that we have witnessed over the past several years. If she was anything like the nuns that taught me, during my grade school years, she’d have a quick and resolute comment. I imagine it would convey a greater form of respect, than what we are seeing, these days.
There is a great deal to have faith in within our lives, as we witness individuals serve and assist those in need. Then the nightly news can splinter that good feeling. Doubt will inevitably filter in, as that seems to be the strategy, at hand. Know that! It’s a strategy, and not for good, or faith-building, rather faith-testing.
Focus on the good that you know and leave the craziness to be dealt with by God. Look at this beautiful world, without listening to the repeated fear-inducing narratives on FB, or other social media platforms, that are meant to induce fear and hate.
Faith and doubt? Yes, I believe that they can coexist. We were born with inquisitive minds, in order to question, doubt, discard, reflect, and find faith. Doubt can constructively serve as a building block for faith.
Faith and hate? No, I do not believe those two can coexist. If you have faith in God, there should be no room in your heart for hate. Hate is merely a fractured building block, that leads to destruction.
My hope is that when you experience doubt, you will move through it in a peaceful manner, as you journey your way back to faith.
 Mother Teresa: Come Be My Light: The Private Writings of the Saint of Calcutta, ed.
Brian Kolodiejchuk, (Doubleday: 2007, 210.
12 thoughts on “How Is Your Faith?”
Beautifully written Carol!
When I feel unsure – I try to go to my most basic thoughts about faith. I see myself @ an unknown point on a linear spectrum : @ one end is pure good & @ the opposite end is pure evil. Then I try to think about what each end (extreme) would be like. I always end up @ least facing toward the good end !
Yes, you do!
Thank you for your beautiful thoughts. Definitely needed encouraging words.
Thank you, Jean! I hope all is well!
Carol, I always enjoy reading your post and this one is no exception. I agree faith and doubt can coexist and that faith and hate can not. I can’t even imagine what it would be like going through this period of time without faith. Thank you so much for articulating your thoughts and sharing.
Thank you for your kind words, Tim. I hope that you are doing well!
Thank you for sharing your insights and wisdom, Carol. I always enjoy reading your words as they’re a beautiful mix of gentleness and strength. This article was a good reminder for me to drown out the negativity and focus on the goodness that surrounds us, even though it has been hard to see and feel as of late. xo
Thanks Karen! I always love reading your replies, and learning what a reader takes away, from the thoughts that are offered. xo
Thanks for the reminder! So needed during this time.
Hope you are doing well, My Friend!
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