Why do you doubt?

We were scheduled to leave for Alaska the next day, and my son needed appropriate shoes. See, I had planned on having him wear tennis shoes, but my friend reminded me just how muddy Kodiak would be.

So off I headed on a Saturday (leaving behind all the other preparations that I still had to do), planning to visit every thrift store I could think of. I realized this could be a several-hour endeavor because size 14 shoes aren’t all that easy to come by.

While on my way, I literally prayed that God would let me find shoes.

I walked into the first thrift store and immediately saw a pair of size 13 boots. “Well,” I thought, “maybe he could squish his feet into these.” I shelved that idea until I looked a little more. I walked up and down the aisles and—on the last row—found a pair!

Immediately I was filled with doubt. They weren’t lace-up ones. Maybe I should bring my son and have him try them on. Should I check the other thrift stores before I committed to these?

Then I laughed at myself for being an idiot.

Here, not more than ten minutes before, I had prayed to find shoes! And here they were. Yet I was doubting. Oh ye of little faith. Did you forget that your heavenly Father loves you and delights in giving good gifts?

As I grabbed the shoes, I realized that God had answered my prayer well before I even prayed it. After all, someone had bought this pair of shoes, didn’t use them, and then donated them. The thrift store received the brand-name shoes, tagged them for only $20 (with my military discount), and put them on the floor for the exact moment I would need them.

I bought them, and the whole trip took about 35 minutes.

I bet you have a similar story, right? 

I think at some point we’ve all prayed and then been surprised by getting a yes. It’s as if we prayed knowing that he could answer, but doubting that he actually would. Then, when he did, we were filled with skepticism.

Jesus knew this would be an issue. So he reminded us:

“‘Have faith in God,’ Jesus answered. ‘Truly I tell you, if anyone says to this mountain, “Go, throw yourself into the sea,” and does not doubt in their heart but believes that what they say will happen, it will be done for them. Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours’” (Mark 11:22-24).

Even if it’s a pair of shoes.


Linda Buxa is a writer and editor who loves thrift stores. She’d love to hear how God answered your prayers.



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