Christian Living

Do You Have a Crisis of Faith?

Discover 3 Tips of What to Do If Question Your Faith

I hear people who have a crisis of faith, who question what they believe. It pains me to see the struggle they’re going through. Yet I’ve never been sure how to help them, except to encourage them to press forward and not give up. This is because I never questioned my faith.

I have, however, questioned church practices. I’ve done this often for most of my life. And I see a connection between the two.

I Question the Church

I was a young teenager when I got my hands on a New Testament copy of the Living Bible. I poured through it. I read the entire thing. Then I read it again.

When I was fourteen, I devoted my summer vacation to reading the Old and New Testament of the Living Bible. It only took an hour a day, and I had plenty of time.

What I saw in this easy-to-understand version of the Bible bore little similarity to what I saw practiced at church each Sunday morning. Yes, there were common elements, but that was it. Mostly what I saw was a significant disconnect.

That’s when I began to question the church. I became so disillusioned with it, I nearly gave up—at least with the organized, institutional church. To this day, decades later, I’m still disillusioned and remain critical.

Yet I still attend—in hope to one day experience church as it was practiced in the Bible—and as Jesus modeled for his followers.

This lifetime of questioning church occurs throughout my blog posts and in many of my books. And it’s the focus of my book Jesus’s Broken Church.

But what’s the connection with me questioning the church and other people questioning their faith?

Do You Question Your Faith?

A common trait I’ve seen in people who question their beliefs—who face a crisis of faith—is that they’re mad at God because of what they’ve been taught about him, not because of who he is.

Their perception of God is skewed because of preachers and teachers who have misrepresented our Heavenly Father, Jesus his Son, and the Holy Spirit to them.

These folks teach with passion and conviction, but too often they’re spouting a manmade doctrine that runs counter to biblical truth. If you’re questioning your faith, first take a step back and question what you’ve been taught about God before you get angry at him.

Here are three tips if you find yourself having a crisis of faith:

1. Question What You’ve Been Taught

The first step is to examine your perception of God. Perhaps it’s wrong. For most people it is. Though many hold minor misconceptions, others make assumptions about God that are seriously flawed.

Though in some cases this may be due to their own faulty logic of making God into who they want him to be, usually it’s because others—both trained clergy in untrained peers—have led them astray.

God loves us. This is true.

But this doesn’t mean we won’t have struggles in life. In fact, we will. Jesus says so (John 16:33). The evil one will assault us (John 17:15). We will face persecution (Matthew 5:10-12).

And because God loves us, we will receive his discipline, just as parents lovingly discipline their children so they can grow and mature. So it is with Father God and us, his children (Hebrews 12:5-7).

2. Seek Biblical Truth

Just as I’ve cited these four passages that teach us the truth about God, faith, and living for him, the Bible is packed full of more of these truths.

To learn about God, we need to read the book that teaches us about him.

Don’t rely on what our culture says about God because they don’t know him. They are dangerous guides, just like the many ministers who misrepresent God’s true nature.

The true source for reliable information about God is the Bible. We will do well to read it, study it, and meditate on it. As we do our understanding of who God is and our relationship with him will change—for the better.

3. Ask for Holy Spirit Insight

It’s hard, however, to read and study the Bible in isolation. We can do this with others, with iron sharpening iron (Proverbs 27:17). As King Solomon wrote, two are better than one (Ecclesiastes 4:9-12).

Yet the Holy Spirit is an even better resource to help us understand Scripture. The Holy Spirit is a reliable guide who will teach us (John 14:26). This begins with prayer (James 1:5).

Move Forward

If you find yourself questioning your faith, first question what you’ve been taught about God. Then seek the Bible for real answers, relying on the Holy Spirit to guide you and reveal truth to you.

As you reform your understanding of God, you’ll grow closer to him. And you will see your crisis of faith dim. This will take time, but it will be worth the effort.

Peter DeHaan writes about biblical Christianity to confront status quo religion and live a life that matters. He seeks a fresh approach to following Jesus through the lens of Scripture, without the baggage of made-up traditions and meaningless practices.

Read more in his books, blog, and weekly email updates.

Bogged Down Reading the Bible?

10 Essential Bible Reading Tips, from Peter DeHaan

Get the Bible Reading Tip Sheet: “10 Tips to Turn Bible Reading from Drudgery to Delight.”

​Enter your info and receive the free Bible Reading Tip Sheet and be added to Peter’s email list.