Faith and doubt
For years I saw questions and doubts as a sin, an unwillingness to embrace God. That gradually morphed into seeing doubt as a personal weakness, more of a flaw than an intentional act of disobedience. I've come to see doubts and questions as a way I've grown. This transition is an evidence of mercy in my own life.
Mercy is one of those words that is so familiar that we don't think twice about its meaning. That's why I wanted to look it up. I found kindness, compassion, clemency, being humane, an unwillingness to cause pain. There was also being lax, indulgent and soft. I wasn't too fond of those. My favorite definition though was providing relief. A person cannot remove another's doubts, but they can make it easier for them to continue on despite them.
I've come to see faith as akin to courage. As courage does not mean the absence of fear, faith is not the absence of doubt. It is action in the presence of fear and doubt that marks the presence of both courage and faith. Fear and doubt are supposed to be weaknesses, but I'm reminded that God uses the weak and foolish things of this world. Without them, could either faith or courage grow?