Ruth Graham's "Crisis Of Faith"
I had what some might call a "crisis of faith," although that sounds a bit grand for a thirteen-year-old's first doubts.
Still, age has nothing to do with a crisis, and the subject was my faith. Perhaps it resulted from unanswered prayer. I had begged God (and my parents) to let me go home. Without success.
Or it may have been spiritual growing pains.
Like the young man who went to a delightfully sane bishop to confess he had lost his faith.
"Nonsense," replied the bishop. "You've lost your parents' faith. Now go out and get one of your own."
I knew God had sent His Son, Jesus, to die for the sins of mankind, but somehow I did not feel included. There were so many and I was only one and, let's face it, not a very significant one at that. I prayed for forgiveness and felt nothing. I wasn't even sure He was listening.
Finally, in desperation, I went to my ever-practical sister, Rosa, and asked her advice.
"I don't know what to tell you to do," she replied matter-of-factly, "unless you take some verse and put your own name in. See if that helps."
So I picked up my Bible and turned to Isaiah 53, one of my favorite chapters. I did just what she suggested—I read, "He was wounded for [Ruth's] transgressions, He was bruised for [Ruth's] iniquities: the chastisement of [Ruth's] peace was upon Him; and with His stripes [Ruth] is healed" (see Isaiah 53:5).
I knew then that I was included.
—Ruth Bell Graham