I've detected this because it's a sin I've succumbed to. You look at people who don't struggle with doubts--don't struggle with the reality of horrific suffering or problems with the biblical text--and wonder if there isn't something wrong with them. Maybe they are just too fearful. Maybe they just aren't smart enough.
And me? I'm both intelligent and courageous. And so I doubt.
I'm tempted here to go off into another riff about how we tend to build our self-esteem over against others. In this case, religious doubt is used to pat ourselves on the back, to enhance our self-concept, a means to engage in self-flattery in relation to the mindless crowds going to church on Sunday.
Our doubts, rooted as they are in our fearless questioning, set us apart from the blinkered, believing masses in the pews.
I'm stating all this way too strongly of course, but the dynamic is real and widespread.
And I tire of it, in myself and others.
And so what I wish for, for myself and for all doubting Christians, is that we might come to practice a gracious doubt. A doubt that is generous to others, no matter how they read the bible, or pray, or worship, or seek divine intervention, or handle the problem of pain.
There is nothing in your doubt or lack of doubt, your questioning or your certainty, that has anything to do with me. We are all, to use a biblical phrase, working out our own salvation with great fear and trembling. So let us be generous and welcoming of each other. Let us make room for each other. Especially in our hearts.
And when we doubt, let us practice a gracious doubt.