"I'm having doubts"
"About my faith . . . I mean, is it real? How would I know if it was real or if I just want to believe the stuff that I say I believe in?"
"Why would the fact that you want to believe in it mean that it can't be true?"
"Because maybe I am just engaging in wishful thinking . . . perhaps my desire to believe in something is causing me to see things that really aren't there?"
A lot of us have had similar conversations about faith with people who aren't sure what they believe. Maybe you have had an internal conversation like that with yourself.
These are truly deep thoughts - the kind of reflection that we should have on a regular basis to make sure that we are not treating our beliefs like an intellectual candy store. We should not let our desires dictate what we believe or don't believe. There needs to be a healthy dose of skepticism that we subject our faith to in order to have depth as believers.
It is fascinating, though how incomplete it is.
I have met many people who almost seem to want a pat on the back for being skeptics. Like having doubt is some kind of accomplishment.
"I'm not sure what I believe . . . I have lots of doubts about what Christianity offers."
Well good, as you should . . . but don't stop there mister. Skepticism, the healthiest kind is a 360 degree endeavor. So many people who have doubts stop with the acquisition of doubt. Skepticism is not a point we reach, it is the manner in which we arrive at the truth.
To successfully arrive at the truth means that we have to have a healthy doubt about everything - including our doubts. True skepticism is reflexive.
Unhealthy skepticism is when we stop doubting. There are many 'skeptics' of the faith who are merely dogmatists. They have doubted certain ideas, conveniently neglecting to subject their own assumptions to the same doubt. In order to be a real skeptic, we should doubt our doubts.