By Adrianna La Tortue
Many of us face inner doubt regularly. When I say inner doubt, I mean that little voice in your head and that slight tug at your heart that contradicts what you want or think. I struggle with the question that nags at my mind. Should you listen to it? Should you second-guess yourself? The classic thing to do is not to listen. Mainly because you shouldn’t second-guess yourself, right? I do it all the time. For example, when I take a test. I did it in elementary school, high school, and college. To say my self-doubt was annoying would be an understatement. But what happens when that voice and tug help you to make the right decision? Whenever I am faced with a seemingly impossible situation, I can hear and feel that self-doubt. Some people think our conscience tells us to do the right thing. You know the saying, “Do you have a conscience?”
The Bible teaches that God gives us each a conscience. Your conscience allows you to examine yourself. For example, Acts 23:1 says, “Then Paul, looking earnestly at the council, said, “Men and brethren, I have lived in all good conscience before God until this day.” If you are a believer, your conscience also bears witness. For instance, in Romans 9:1, again Paul says, “I tell the truth in Christ, I am not lying, my conscience also bearing me witness in the Holy Spirit.” Your conscience also works within your established values. Maintaining a good conscience requires growing your faith and acquiring biblical principles to live by. You can cultivate a clear conscience by studying the Word, which will renew your mind. And continue to grow in your relationship with Jesus Christ, committing to obeying God and being a Christ-like example in the world.
Another role of your conscience can help you to demonstrate God’s love and compassion. In Corinthians, again, Paul was speaking concerning meat sacrificed to idols. In the church of Corinth, some understood, and some did not understand the meat was safe to eat because it was sacrificed to a false god. In other words, in reality, it was not offered to anything. However, Paul encouraged those who understood correctly not to eat the meat since it could make their brothers stumble. But to instead be compassionate and show loving-kindness by not eating it. Thus, I believe when my conscience is nagging at my heart and mind, it is God, the Holy Spirit, nudging me and guiding me to do what is right.
During my freshman year of college, I asked my vivacious roommate, “If you could have one thing, what would it be?” And she answered, “I want God’s cell number!” I laughed so hard. When I asked, “why?” She answered, “so I can get a reply.” Sometimes we might want the Almighty’s number to get an answer immediately. We all want answers right away. However, I believe God often provides an answer when our conscience tugs and speaks.
In my experience, we take our consciences for granted because we do not realize that God is speaking to us when we recall a passage of scripture or the teaching we heard at church on Sunday morning. There is good inside us because we have the Holy Spirit, but we will fail to do what is good when we are in the flesh. It is up to us to make the right choice, and remember, we have a Helper. If we follow our conscience and are in good standing with God, we can demonstrate His love and compassion. Those little inner doubts may be annoying, but they can show our good side and the truth that God gives us a choice; we have free will, so choose to do what is right.
Scriptures quoted from the New King James Version. Image created using Canva Pro.
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