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The Troublesome Trio

My father shared a wonderful analogy with me one day. He said, “Doubt has a brother named Fear and their cousin’s name is Unbelief.” At first, I thought, wow, what a great statement! Then I thought, oh my goodness that is so true. After taking a moment to think, I came to realize there are three common traits: 1) they have one strategic goal in mind: render the person useless for the Kingdom of God; 2) the tactics they employ to accomplish this goal can range from a temptation of a simple thought to a devastating act. 3) every attack they make is driven by the father of lies—Satan, our enemy. But, the one comforting fact I know is that my Heavenly Father, the Almighty God, is in control. Therefore, no matter what comes my way, my life is in His hands, and I will conquer. But I need to learn to recognize the troublesome trio. They don’t always attack the same way. They can show up in a situation, through a person, or mere words.

Doubt is dangerous, especially to a believer of Jesus Christ, and faith is always compromised. How many times have I started off feeling good about something only to be derailed by a tiny thought of doubt. Are you sure you’re making the right decision? You know you don’t have the skill for this. What if it doesn’t work out the way you hoped? Within minutes, I’m second guessing myself, minimizing what I can do, or stopping myself from acting. Where is my faith? There are countless examples of God delivering His children from the hand of the enemy. But, the mind becomes a portal for Satan to infiltrate. Thankfully, I have the Word of God to fend off attacks that enter my mind. And I remember Jeremiah 29:11 NIV, “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” This does give me hope. I remind myself, there is no other God beside Him—my faith is renewed.

When Doubt takes root, his brother Fear is close behind. And one thing is for sure, when Fear comes on the scene, everything escalates to a different level. Oftentimes the effect can be crippling. But, I focus on 2 Timothy 1:7 NIV, which states, “For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.” When I am in trouble I can call on Him at any time of the day, 24/7 and He assures me of his constant presence, and strength. Isaiah 41:10 NIV states, “Don’t be afraid, for I am with you. Don’t be discouraged, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you. I will hold you up with my victorious right hand.” Although troubles will come along, the Lord will deliver me (Psalms 34:19 NIV) and God will come to my aid like a rushing flood and drive away the enemy (Isaiah 59:19 NIV).

Eventually, Doubt and Fear call their cousin, Unbelief. He badgers like a top salesman who closes the sale. Most of the work has already been accomplished by his cousins. All he has to do is get a signature on the bottom line. The future is now negatively compromised and to change the mindset requires a lot of work. It’s like straying away from a path and not knowing how to get back on track. In the end giving up seems like the next best move. But Hebrews 3:12, says “See to it, brothers and sisters, that none of you has a sinful, unbelieving heart that turns away from the living God.” I am encouraged because I know that nothing is impossible for God, “…Everything is possible for one who believes,” Mark 9:23 NIV. I will, like Sara, judge God faithful Who promised. Hebrews 11:6 NIV, says “And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.” There is no room for unbelief in my heart—only for the things of God.

God is sovereign. He will not allow me to suffer beyond what I can bear. He will never leave nor forsake me. Even though the brothers and their cousin make their appearance regularly, they will always lose because I trust in God and stand on His promises. I am confident that with God, I cannot fail. “Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful” Hebrews 10:23 NIV.

Writer Julie Blackman says “My goal is to share God’s love through my writing and inspire others to see God.”

Seen on the website of Florence Simmons, author and writer:,