A growing number of you are sharing that you are deconstructing your faith.
For some of you, that’s not where you are, but it’s where a loved one is and it feels scary because you fear they are abandoning their faith. I think this is worth talking about together — whether this is where you are or it’s where a loved one finds themself.
When we deconstruct something, like a building, the layers are peeled back. There’s a goal in mind. The person in charge and their team look at the risks involved, but they proceed because they want to make sure the foundation is strong, or that the inner workings are as they should be.
So when you tell me you are deconstructing your faith, this doesn’t make me afraid. In fact, my prayer is that you find the beauty of Jesus all over again in the process.
Peel back those layers
Maybe you take off teachings that seemed religious and good, but had a twist on it, much like the Pharisees did way back when.
Maybe you peel off opinions or theories or politics or anything that has been tangled with faith but don’t measure up to what Jesus said, taught, or lived.
Maybe you question what you’ve been taught by family that you love, but you aren’t quite sure if your belief system is yours, or theirs.
I worked with teens and college students for years, and they’ve grown up. This past few years have brought many of them to a place of crisis in their faith. Many have privately messaged me. Others have shared their wrestling publicly. They ask important questions, such as:
What do I believe?
Who should I listen to?
Have I accepted a belief system that doesn’t always resonate with what Jesus taught?
Is this true or not?
Though your questions may make others tremble, God is big enough to withstand them. In any intimate relationship, we live in honesty and integrity. Asking those questions, seeking, looking for Jesus in the midst of them, is an intimate process. Take those questions to him first and often. Don’t hold back. Share your thoughts, your hurts, your concerns. Lay them before him.
But Suzie, what if I don’t get the answers I’m looking for?
If you seek me, you will find me
That’s a promise I’ve held on to this year. When we have a crisis of faith (whether in the church, in people, or in our faith itself), it simply means we aren’t sure what or who to trust. That crisis isn’t a bad thing if it leads you to peel back the layers to discover what you truly believe. Your faith may emerge different, but if it’s founded on Christ, it stands.
Because He stands.
Maybe you leave behind teachings that don’t resonate with the Bible. As you dig deep into scripture and study with a heart open wide, let the words settle in your heart as if hearing them for the first time.
Just don’t go the other way, sweet friend. This leads away from the One who loves you like crazy.
The healthy risk we take instead is that we take those things to him with the understanding there are things that have caused him grief as well, and that when one of his children who is truly seeking, asking questions, and digging deep to connect and commune with him and hear his voice — that’s transformational.
To set things right again
Just as the deconstruction process allows that one to find a firm foundation, to set things right again from within, my prayer is that you’ll discover Jesus all over again, with a beautiful new foundation that is personal and real.
And if a loved one is deconstructing their faith, pray with and for them in the process. Remember that Jesus loves them even more than you, and this may be the path to set things right again in their own heart as they scrape away everything they thought they knew to find what they really believe.
Lord, thank you for my friend who is trying to find you and only you. I’ve been there, and you met me there. I pray she feels you close as a whisper, as strong as a mountain, and that her faith rises stronger than ever as she follows you, amen.
I spent two years studying the book of Luke. Why? Because I wanted to get rid of anything that I didn’t find in those pages, and fall in love with my faith and with my Savior all over again.
Those two years changed my faith. They changed me.
If you are in the process of rediscovering who Jesus is, this is a gentle resource that will draw you to the feet of Jesus. It will show you what he taught versus any other. It will reveal what Jesus thought of those who fell into sin, who needed justice, who longed for healing — and it will show you how to fall in love with Jesus all over again.
Come with Me: Discovering the Beauty of Following Where He Leads is for anyone who desires to simply follow Jesus and him alone.
Download chapter one of Come with Me absolutely free.
I love this. It’s a place many parents find themselves when their children are leaving home and need to work out their own salvation. I trust God, but it’s not easy to watch. No one really told me to expect this as my children were becoming more independent and I think it’s a great subject for conversation with younger families. Thank you for opening the door for this. You made some great points. Take care.
Thank you for this. I am one of those parents whose child is “deconstructing” her faith, and it’s scary because sometimes she’s very angry and lashes out at the “church” as a whole. I continue to pray that He who has done a work in her will continue.
Thank you Suzie for these words of wisdom.
Thank you for this Suzie. God uses our ‘crisis of belief’ to move us closer to Him and who He really is if we are willing. The willingness to wrestle with God will take us deeper. I love your encouragement to pray with people that are in that season of wrestling. The enemy would love to take their eyes off Jesus but we know that Jesus is stronger.
Your Bible study is one of my favourites! Love you,
Loved every word of this. I have been “deconstructing”—although I think I’ve turned the corner into REconstructing… rebuilding on the foundation of all the things that have shown themselves or remained true. I used to think people who went through this process were turning away from faith, but now I’ve come to believe this is one of the bravest things many of us will ever do. But it’s not prompted by a lack of faith—if anything, it’s the belief that there is some truth and goodness worth fighting for. Something true about God that you’re not willing to discard even if certain teachings don’t hold up to scripture and scrutiny. For me, it’s been a desperation to find Jesus in authenticity and truth, and yes, it is beautiful. HE is beautiful. And He really is all that I ever hoped He would be, even if my “faith” looks different than it used to. Thanks for posting this, Suzie.
Love your perspective on this. I’ve always thought my doubt has strengthened my faith by forcing me to choose Jesus over and over again. Thanks for your beautiful words!
Suzie thank you so much for such a Peaceful way of one questioning their doubts and beliefs when at a cross road and also shedding some light on what it feels like from a parents perspective to see your child start their journey of discovery all the while we are still on our own ..I have heard some profound messages this week and I welcome them all..Your words confirms what God is saying all along Trust in Him and His word (Jesus) be salt and light as you discover and radiate The Love between Him and Yourself and we will begin to see others start their discovery as we Deconstruct and as another responder said Reconstruct…Thanks Suzie
Thank you, friend. As always, your words are well-timed and shared with gentleness. I love that about you.
The only reason to believe something is because it is true. That is a firm foundation. Often it is the world and its ways that creep in and confuse us. It is a perfect time to reflect, uncovering the root causes of our dissatisfaction, unbelief etc. The Holy Spirit is an excellent teacher and He will provide the answers we need. He is faithful.
So good. So needed the wisdom on how to be able to not be defensive or afraid, but to trust God. He is the One who draws others to Himself!