Inspirational thoughts and random writings from the alumni and friends of Quad-Cities Christian Writers Conference.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Introducing Shelly Akins

Who's Got Questions?

The three high school girls look expectantly at me to answer their question during Sunday school: Does God love people who don’t believe in Him? It’s more complicated than a yes or no answer.

Together we have struggled with this question in various forms over the past four years we have been together as a Sunday school class. They have each grown up in the church and in faith, yet as they enter their mid-teen years, they have begun to question what it is they actually believe. Where are the miracles of the Bible in our lives today? Why doesn’t God speak to us in a voice we can hear and understand? Who are we to live and who does God love? These questions continue to crop up during our Bible study times together.

My answer is to them is usually, what do you think? Really, it’s because I don’t know myself. Teaching…that’s not the right word, leading them these past few years has made me grow deeper in my faith and sake myself tough questions about what I believe and why. These three young women of God challenge me in their desire to grow into strong women of God. We’ve learned that some questions just lead to more questions, not answers.

I took my faith for granted and thought I knew what I believed, but in teaching them, I’ve had to really think about the why of what I believe. Why do we have a trinity and if God is one being why are there separate parts? When I pray for God to heal my grandmother (who has Alzheimer’s disease) she only keeps getting worse?

I don’t know. A lot of times, the other members of the class have better answers than I do. In response to the Alzheimer’s question, a classmate commented that we don’t always know God’s plan and we have to have faith that He’s in control.

You want to be challenged in your faith? You want to grow? Teach Sunday school or hang out with young Christians. Sometimes I feel like children, youth and young people are looked down on by older members of the church. They may not have all the answers to their faith, but they do have questions. Will you be the one that they look to for answers and guidance?

Shelly Akins is a small town reporter, a city girl learning about farm life one story at a time. Shelly also likes to write non fiction articles for chidren's magazines. When she's not writing, she reads and reads, especially young adult novels. She is a Presbyterian pastor's wife and the mother of two children. Read more of her writing on hub pages here:



  1. Wow, what a thought-provoking question and exploration. This is different from those who know him and reject him. Excellent.

  2. Shelly, I love your approach to teaching! Those girls are blessed to have you. I think your respect for them as people and your honesty in answering their honest questions reveal to them that they can take anything to God. What a great lesson for them to learn at such a young age.

  3. Thanks. They are a great bunch of kids. We've been together as a group for almost four years now. I've loved seeing them grow in their faith.