From the Pastor… Healthy Skepticism
Skeptical scrutiny is the means, in both science and religion, by which deep thoughts can be winnowed from deep nonsense. — Carl Sagan
A skeptic is one who has a tendency to doubt and question things. Is that a bad trait? Not in my thinking. One is wise to be wary of every assertion of truth that comes down the pike, whether that be in the realm of science, faith, sociology, politics, or most any field of humanity.
Of course, there is a sick skepticism which rejects any new thought or idea out of hand without careful reflection or a testing of the matter. I have in mind a healthy skepticism which is willing to consider, test, and verify before believing. I admit to having a skeptical mind-set. I was born in Missouri, the Show Me State, which got it’s nick-name a long time ago. Apparently, residents of that state had a tendency to desire proof before believing something.
Healthy skepticism prevents us from falling for the false and absurd. Since social media has an abundant supply of fake news and misrepresented facts, I think we are cultivating a new level of skepticism in our land. Some of that is good, but we cannot grow cynical to the point of not wanting to entertain any other idea than what we already believe. We might even do well to doubt our own certainties so as not to be limited in the breadth of our understanding. Everyone has much more to learn.
It’s even okay to test beliefs about God. That is not heretical, since an open, honest testing of the reality of God will lead one to a higher level of confidence and trust in Him. He is a big guy and doesn’t need defending. Keep looking, says Jesus, and you will find Him.
God’s best to you,