I am in the middle of a 6-part series helping Christian students think through how to prepare for life at a big university. This topic is particularly relevant, I hope, given the number of high school seniors who are in the middle of deciding where they will go to college in the fall.
This little series is based on a recent lecture I gave to the Regents School in Austin, Texas, where I laid out 6 principles designed to help rising college students think more clearly about what’s ahead. It’s also based on my book, Surviving Religion 101. You can read the prior installments here, here, here, and here.
We now come to a fifth thing that rising Christian college students need to know: “Doubting your faith does not make you a bad Christian.”
The great nineteenth century Baptist preacher, C.H. Spurgeon, once confessed: “On a sudden, the thought crossed my mind—which I abhorred but could not conquer—that there was no God, no Christ, no heaven, no hell, and that all my prayers were but a farce, and that I might as well have whistled to the winds or spoken to the howling waves.”
The above quote reminds us that nearly all Christians, even those who seem strong and confident, face periods of doubt about what they believe. Indeed, sometimes those doubts can swell up into a crisis of sorts. Even Spurgeon admitted his doubts were difficult to conquer.
So, how do we handle these doubts when they come? Or, how do we help others who admit they are struggling with what they believe? Here are a number of things to consider. [Read more…]