{January 9, 2022}

Heartland Community Church


Bring Your Doubts (If You Can)

By Brooke Hodnefield

Today, Dan posed the question, ‘What happens when we reassess our beliefs?’ What I love about this question, is that it is welcomed by God. Not only welcomed, but encouraged – and he has the shoulders to bear it! What I believed about Jesus when I first accepted his free gift of life in following him was very different than what I believe now. In the earlier days of walking out my faith, I had a legalistic, give-and-take kinda God belief. If I worked hard enough and did all things ‘right’ in the eyes of God, I would be a good Christian. This may have been taught, self-imposed and mis-interpreted along the way, but this is TRULY what I believed.

Not one person can live up to those expectations, nor does God ask us to. Romans 3:23 reminds us, ‘….we ALL fall short of the glory of God.’ Why would we need him if we didn’t?! The perfectionist in me had a hard time grappling with this concept of grace. I wasn’t worthy, tidy, deserving or clean enough to receive that which he offers. I doubted that God would simply accept me as I show up, fully me, and fully imperfect.

The faith of my childhood continued (and continues) to grow and morph over time as I wrestle with the grace he lavishes upon us. This wrestling that once was alarming and unsettling, which caused me to ask deeper, harder questions, now feels a bit more familiar. Just as David asks, ‘How long, Lord? Will you forget me forever? How long will you hide your face from me? How long must I wrestle with my thoughts and day after day have sorrow in my heart? How long will my enemy triumph over me?’ (Psalm 13:1-2) As the Bible tells us, David was a man after God’s heart, and even he droned on about the journey of doubt!

Whether you are a life-long Jesus follower, starting your journey, or somewhere in between, God levels the playing field. Doubters are welcome here. The greatest act of faith that we can have is when we muster up the strength to invite God into the midst of it. And simply ask the question, ‘… help me overcome my unbelief!” (Mark 9:24).

As doubt rises within you, instead of squelching it, disqualifying it, or wholesaling it (to steal Dan’s word today), talk to God about it. He loves you, doubts and all. He can take it.


{sunday 1.9.22}

Read Psalm 13:1-2, Mark 9:24

Observe, Reflect, Apply: Which phrases in these passages reverberate in your head? Can you name a doubt? Or a place where you feel God isn’t seeing or moving on your behalf? Take some time to talk to God and literally name these places before him. Ask for his insight, his presence, his understanding. Where can you invite God to help you work on your unbelief?


{bible reading plan}

By Brooke Hodnefield

{monday 1.10.22}

Read Ephesians 1:1-8

Observe, Reflect, Apply: Before you are to encounter someone you’ve not met, do you already believe the best about them? Jesus not only loved us and chose us, but he predestined us to be adopted as his sons and daughters! (vs 4-5) We had done nothing to deserve this (and we still haven’t!) but he blesses us and seeks to lavish us with grace. In a world of take and give, rest in God’s overflowing grace that he seeks to bless you with today.

{tuesday 1.11.22}

Read Ephesians 1:9-14

Observe, Reflect, Apply: Have you ever felt lost within your own life? While we may move through our days sometimes disoriented or weighed down by the sheer magnitude, Paul uses the word ‘mystery’ to describe God’s ever-flowing grace that ‘..brings heaven and earth together under one head, even Christ.’ (vs 10) You are not walking alone. Be intentional today to look for God as you move through your day…pray to open the eyes of your heart to see him.

{wednesday 1.12.22}

Read Ephesians 1:15-23

Observe, Reflect, Apply: When we hear the word ‘power’ we might consider the misuse of power that we see at work in the world, or even brush up against it ourselves. But the power spoken of here, ‘…his incomparably great power for us who believe. That power is the same as the mighty strength he exerted when he raised Christ from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly realms..’ (19-20) THAT is power. God’s power. Where do you feel vulnerable or at risk? Remember that God’s incomparably great power is for each person who believes.

{thursday 1.13.22}

Read Ephesians 2:1-10

Observe, Reflect, Apply: For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— not by works, so that no one can boast.’ (vs 8-9) Where do you find yourself operating out of grace, through your own ‘works’? That may involve forcing something that doesn’t need to be, or using mighty effort that is simply not moving anything. Ask God to show you where you may be trying to step in on his behalf.

{friday 1.14.22}

Read Ephesians 2:11-18

Observe, Reflect, Apply: The word ‘peace’ is used four times in this passage. Not only is it emphasized, it is made clear that (Jesus), ‘For he himself is our peace..’ (vs 14). There is much division in our world, in our community, and potentially in our homes. Jesus not only brings peace, but he embodies peace. If you feel the divide, cling to the one who IS our peace, and ask for his presence to bring peace to that which is divided in your life.

{saturday 1.15.22}

Read Ephesians 2:19-22

Observe, Reflect, Apply: ‘And in him you too are being built together to become a dwelling in which God lives by his Spirit.’ (vs 22) While God is cited as the builder of God’s people, we individually are to be a representation and dwelling place for the Spirit. What might our actions and words look like if we believed this truly is the case? Consider our lives as pointing others to him. Take heart, and know that you don’t go alone – you have the Spirit as a guide.



{extra journey resources}

CLICK HERE to visit The Bible Project site and explore their super simple, super informative Bible videos (and other resources).

CLICK HERE to get the Read Scripture App, from our friends at The Bible Project.

CLICK HERE for more on how to use the observe-reflect-apply approach to getting the most out of your Bible reading.

The Bible App Get the free YouVersion Bible for your phone, tablet, or computer. Experience the Bible anywhere, with options to highlight, save notes, and share what you are reading with others.

The Bible App For Kids YouVersion partnered with OneHope to develop the Bible App for Kids, designing it specifically to engage children with Bible stories on an age-appropriate level. The Bible App for Kids is a free app for Android, Apple, and Kindle devices, available in over 60 languages.

Bible Gateway Provides advanced Bible searching capabilities, which allow readers to find passages in scripture based on keywords, phrases, or scripture reference.

Please visit us on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter and share what you are learning, questioning or experiencing. We love conversations!


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12175 S Strang Line Road, Olathe, KS 66062

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