5-Minute Friday’s here again, just writing for approx. 5 minutes without worrying whether it’s just right. This week’s prompt is: Doubt, and if you want to read some of the other offerings, you can visit http://katemotaung.com or follow the #FMFParty hatchtag on Twitter.
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Doubt has always seemed such a negative word. Someone believes something is true, but then they have doubts. You discern something that makes you feel uneasy, but you’re encouraged to give the person the benefit of the doubt – questioning your own judgment. The more we walk down the path of doubt, the further away we are from the path of faith.
John the Baptist started to make his way down the doubt-path as he languished in prison. God had told him the one His Spirit rested on would be the Messiah, but John’s preaching of what was right had landed him in a cell. Surely any Messiah, and especially a relative of his, would give him freedom. That thought must have been like the mouse in the corner, gnawing and gnawing at him, until finally he sent some to ask Jesus: Was He the One or should they expect someone else? Scepticism at its most sceptical, but Jesus knows what John needs: He needs another taste of the world outside, a fresh look at what’s going on. The lame walk! The deaf hear! Good news is preached to the poor!
Relief must have flooded John as he heard the news, but shame at the same time. He had doubted; what would Jesus think of him now? But Jesus complimented him in the hearing of the crowd, and gave him hope that he would be blessed if Jesus wasn’t an offence to him.