“I’m in a deconstruction phase right now.”
How many of you have heard that lately? Or perhaps you’ve even felt you’re in this phase yourself? Perhaps you’re new to it and wondering what it is.
Deconstruction can be an important part of your overall faith journey, but it always needs to be followed up by reconstruction. Without this intentional effort to rebuild, your faith can end up fizzing out before you know it.
Join us as we take a look at what deconstruction faith is and why you need to work on reconstruction next.
The word “deconstruction” can sound daunting to some, even if you’re doing it. You might feel like it’s wrong, but it’s actually OK.
Deconstructing your faith is basically the process of breaking down what you think you know and admitting that you don’t. It is the process of admitting when it’s hard to believe and no longer going through the motions. It can be the result of a tragedy that shakes up your beliefs, or it might simply be the result of years of reflection and study.
One reason many people avoid this phase of their faith is fear. They’re afraid to let go of certainty or they’re afraid that questioning and breaking down their faith is sinful (it’s not). They’re afraid of rejection by their community.
Franciscan friar and author Richard Rohr has spoken before to Relevant Magazine about the problem with holding on to certainty and how it begins to replace what should be real faith with idolatry:
“You don’t move to the next level of faith without going through a necessary period of darkness. … When you’ve never had that in your background and it’s all about building this coherent, consistent system where you actually love your understanding of faith. This is not the love of God anymore, this is an idol called certitude.”
If you find yourself questioning a lot or doubting what you think you know, it’s OK to open yourself up. Ask questions, express your doubts and start looking for God in the answers as you move on from breaking down what you think you know to building up a new understanding.
Lingering in a period of deconstruction without any effort to learn, grow or reconstruct is as good as losing your faith. Reconstruction is the process of building back up an understanding that grounds your faith.
Reconstruction looks different for everyone. For some, it’s learning how to wrestle with hard passages in the Bible. For some, it’s learning a new way to understand God. Figure out what it is you have a problem with, and look for teachings that help you address the problem. There are plenty of great books or podcasts you can turn to for helping you through deconstruction and reconstruction.
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