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  #1  
Old Jan 23, '12, 4:06 pm
GlorytoJesus GlorytoJesus is offline
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Default How can a shy person serve God?

I want to give my entire life for Jesus - I want to be like Him, and I want Him to work through me. But my biggest cross that makes this so difficult is inhibiting shyness and social inexperience/awkwardness.

I look at the people who helped bring Christ into my life - They were vibrant, outgoing, confident, friendly, outreaching individuals who had a warmth of love and care which they generously gave to all the people they met.

It makes me feel so inferior and insufficient, because however hard I try it feels entirely out of my capacity to serve God in that wonderful way.


So how am I to "take up my cross"? Must I work actively to get rid of my shyness, because it seems to be a block in the way of service to God, or am I to somehow find ways to serve God within the context of my unfortunate personality? (How?)


It doesn't seem like a poured-out life to live as a recluse, keeping to myself for the most part and avoiding uncomfortable situations. The best thing I am able to do as far as I can see is to give myself up to prayer for all the people whom I am unable to reach in any other way.

On the other hand, I could make a concerted effort to be friendly and giving and put myself in situations of service. In order to do that I would have to totally sacrifice my comfort and allow myself to be humiliated by my own inevitable awkwardness. But through past experience, even trying my hardest to be friendly and giving I feel like all I do is make other people feel uncomfortable, and put the burden of charity on them.

So what can a shy person do to serve God and spread His love and the gospel?
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  #2  
Old Jan 23, '12, 4:10 pm
hazcompat hazcompat is offline
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Default Re: How can a shy person serve God?

your off to a good start? i did not notice your shyness at all.

peace
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  #3  
Old Jan 23, '12, 4:16 pm
Barbkw Barbkw is offline
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Default Re: How can a shy person serve God?

Are you able to talk with a person one-on-one?

I joined Hospice (and there are many other volunteer organizations) and primarily I speak with one lady and her roommate.)

I joined ESL (English as a second language) and primarily I speak with the one person who has requested my help.

Baby steps, start small and kind your C-legs.
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  #4  
Old Jan 23, '12, 4:51 pm
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the phoenix the phoenix is offline
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Default Re: How can a shy person serve God?

Then there's always your nearest Perpetual Eucharistic Adoration Chapel ...
it's likely they're in need of someone to sign up and commit to one hour per week.
This is what I feel I was called to do at my parish.
Then too, I tend towards the Carthusian charism of
"Silence and Solitude."

Whichever direction you decide to go, pray about it, discern,
and make a joyful decision!

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  #5  
Old Jan 23, '12, 5:01 pm
dcrowmik dcrowmik is offline
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Default Re: How can a shy person serve God?

Quote:
Originally Posted by GlorytoJesus View Post
So what can a shy person do to serve God and spread His love and the gospel?
You can be a pray-er. Pray mightily for others. Prayer produces power.
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  #6  
Old Jan 23, '12, 5:15 pm
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LoyalViews LoyalViews is offline
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Default Re: How can a shy person serve God?

You could be a hermit! Always a good way to serve Our Lord, Our Lady, the Saints, the Angels, the Church, and the Vicar of Christ!
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  #7  
Old Jan 23, '12, 5:44 pm
Jingles Jingles is offline
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Default Re: How can a shy person serve God?

There are religious orders that you could join that would be good for a shy person.

If you are not interested in becoming a religious, you could join a Toastmasters club. There are many shy people in my club that joined to gain confidence. One woman joined so that she could be a lecture at Mass... and now she reads monthly. YAY!

While you are discerning, you could find a shy Saint and ask for his/her intercession.
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  #8  
Old Jan 23, '12, 6:03 pm
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ByzCathCantor ByzCathCantor is offline
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Default Re: How can a shy person serve God?

Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the land!

We pray your shyness is really an outward manifestation of your humility, the most noble of virtues!
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"Christ always gives his Church the gift of unity, but the Church must always pray and work to maintain, reinforce, and perfect the unity that Christ wills for her."- Catechism of the Catholic Church, "Toward Unity" (CCC 820)
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  #9  
Old Jan 23, '12, 6:13 pm
stanncie stanncie is offline
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Default Re: How can a shy person serve God?

Hi OP

I'm not shy in the least but I have a good friend who is quite introverted and has difficulty speaking to large or even small groups. Having said that I admire her very much because she's constantly serving our parish in a number of ways.

I met her in a Young Adult group and like you stated she tried very hard to break out of her shell and did the best she could when asked to say prayers or present a topic. Granted she was not great but her effort touched many.

More importantly she found her niche and is now in charge of producing the weekly bulletin (she's a professional graphic artist) she was too shy to ask Father but the group leader did it for her hehe.

She also helps in the weekly Doctrine class by preparing the power point presentations , the information is given to her by the main presenter. She and a friend also buy snacks and make the attendees feel welcome not by saying much but by providing food and having everything run smoothly.

Since the young adult group is in charge of organizing parish trips she helps in the logistic part of it. Other more outgoing members make the announcements and promote them but she is always working behind the scenes organizing everything.

You might not do any of these things but I can assure you there is something that you can do well. I started by telling you i'm not shy at all and this helps me to make end of mass announcements, give lectures, lead people in prayer etc. However i'm awful at organizing anything since i'm not an organized person, i'm absentminded and tend no to pay close attention to almost anything. So you see we need all types of personalities and I'm sure you have many talents that you can gift to your parish.

Many blessings
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  #10  
Old Jan 23, '12, 6:33 pm
Bezant Bezant is offline
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Default Re: How can a shy person serve God?

St. Therese of Liseux!
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  #11  
Old Jan 23, '12, 6:39 pm
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EmeraldWings EmeraldWings is offline
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Default Re: How can a shy person serve God?

Quote:
Originally Posted by GlorytoJesus View Post
I want to give my entire life for Jesus - I want to be like Him, and I want Him to work through me. But my biggest cross that makes this so difficult is inhibiting shyness and social inexperience/awkwardness.

I look at the people who helped bring Christ into my life - They were vibrant, outgoing, confident, friendly, outreaching individuals who had a warmth of love and care which they generously gave to all the people they met.

It makes me feel so inferior and insufficient, because however hard I try it feels entirely out of my capacity to serve God in that wonderful way.


So how am I to "take up my cross"? Must I work actively to get rid of my shyness, because it seems to be a block in the way of service to God, or am I to somehow find ways to serve God within the context of my unfortunate personality? (How?)


It doesn't seem like a poured-out life to live as a recluse, keeping to myself for the most part and avoiding uncomfortable situations. The best thing I am able to do as far as I can see is to give myself up to prayer for all the people whom I am unable to reach in any other way.

On the other hand, I could make a concerted effort to be friendly and giving and put myself in situations of service. In order to do that I would have to totally sacrifice my comfort and allow myself to be humiliated by my own inevitable awkwardness. But through past experience, even trying my hardest to be friendly and giving I feel like all I do is make other people feel uncomfortable, and put the burden of charity on them.

So what can a shy person do to serve God and spread His love and the gospel?
Have you ever read Saint Therese's "Story of a soul"? - https://tanbooks.benedictpress.com/i...product_id/828

even though it may not feel like it, it is Gods will that you are shy, not that you are meant to accept and conform to your shyness, but God has allowed it for a reason, and you can make good use of it even though it seems like more of an impediment rather than a gift,
i can't tell you why you're shy or what good it is for you, that's something you'd have to meditate on and pray on, but some light sides to shyness just to get you started, for one, it makes you a deeper thinker, and most shy people tend to be more independent, and often times shyness is a kind of shelter from the many evils of the world, and it gives you much more time to grow closer to God and to grow in holiness...i know it seems like more of a mental problem(as the world would have us believe) but there's really nothing wrong with it,
although that doesn't mean you shouldn't brush up on your communication skills, there are still things you can do to make yourself more comfortable with talking and to be less awkward.

but i think one thing that will help you is to really learn to know yourself, and for that i'd recommend reading about the 4 temperaments, but more specifically the phlegmatic and melancholic temperaments in these articles here - http://fav.me/d4kdxel

so, i would just recommend reading those two things(the book and the articles) reading about Saint Therese's "little way" will answer your questions about how to serve God...and we are all called to serve Him differently, God gives us gifts and graces often according to how we are to serve Him in this life.

and just pray on it, if you sincerely wish to serve God, then He will show you how.
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"Prayer is the lifting of our hearts and minds to God. For no matter what we're saying, we're asking, "Do you love me?"
And no matter how He answers, He's saying, "Yes, I do."
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  #12  
Old Jan 23, '12, 6:44 pm
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DaddyGirl DaddyGirl is offline
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Default Re: How can a shy person serve God?

Quote:
Originally Posted by GlorytoJesus View Post
I want to give my entire life for Jesus - I want to be like Him, and I want Him to work through me. But my biggest cross that makes this so difficult is inhibiting shyness and social inexperience/awkwardness.

I look at the people who helped bring Christ into my life - They were vibrant, outgoing, confident, friendly, outreaching individuals who had a warmth of love and care which they generously gave to all the people they met.

It makes me feel so inferior and insufficient, because however hard I try it feels entirely out of my capacity to serve God in that wonderful way.

So how am I to "take up my cross"? Must I work actively to get rid of my shyness, because it seems to be a block in the way of service to God, or am I to somehow find ways to serve God within the context of my unfortunate personality? (How?)

It doesn't seem like a poured-out life to live as a recluse, keeping to myself for the most part and avoiding uncomfortable situations. The best thing I am able to do as far as I can see is to give myself up to prayer for all the people whom I am unable to reach in any other way.

On the other hand, I could make a concerted effort to be friendly and giving and put myself in situations of service. In order to do that I would have to totally sacrifice my comfort and allow myself to be humiliated by my own inevitable awkwardness. But through past experience, even trying my hardest to be friendly and giving I feel like all I do is make other people feel uncomfortable, and put the burden of charity on them.

So what can a shy person do to serve God and spread His love and the gospel?
I have to guess that Mary, mother of Jesus, and Mary Magdelaine, as another example, were very, very shy people...they did so much importance and yet, we barely see them or hear from them in the gospels or the rest of the bible. Just because one is shy and humble and quiet and stays in the background and is not aggressively out there, doesn't mean you can't follow your religion well and...if you want, "give your entire life" to it.
There are many different personalities in this world and it takes all kinds to make a family. No one type is better than another--each is different and unique and fabulous in their own way and we need each one.
Just be yourself! You are fine!
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  #13  
Old Jan 23, '12, 7:03 pm
Joannm Joannm is offline
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Default Re: How can a shy person serve God?

Quote:
Originally Posted by DaddyGirl View Post
I have to guess that Mary, mother of Jesus, and Mary Magdelaine, as another example, were very, very shy people...they did so much importance and yet, we barely see them or hear from them in the gospels or the rest of the bible. Just because one is shy and humble and quiet and stays in the background and is not aggressively out there, doesn't mean you can't follow your religion well and...if you want, "give your entire life" to it.
There are many different personalities in this world and it takes all kinds to make a family. No one type is better than another--each is different and unique and fabulous in their own way and we need each one.
Just be yourself! You are fine!
Why would you think these two women were shy. I have never ever thought of our Lady as shy. In fact, I see her as a very strong woman, sure of who she is and unafraid to follow her Son and she probably worked to spread His message. Mary Magdalene definitely was not shy. She has been called the Apostle to the Apostles and it is believed she traveled to Europe spreading the Gospel. Just because the Scriptures don't say as much about them as they do other, does not mean they were shy.

I was/am a very shy person. I am a wall flower at parties, I don't like to talk on the phone or call people. I hesitate to talk to people. Yet I am what someone called an "occupational extrovert." In my ministry I become another person. People don't believe me when I tell them I am really a shy person. And something else, in all my years of working with clergy, I have found that many of them are shy men. The Holy Spirit gives them the ability to go beyond their shyness and minister to God's people.
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  #14  
Old Jan 24, '12, 1:17 am
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DaddyGirl DaddyGirl is offline
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Default Re: How can a shy person serve God?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Joannm View Post
Why would you think these two women were shy. I have never ever thought of our Lady as shy.
In fact, I see her as a very strong woman, sure of who she is and unafraid to follow her Son and she probably worked to spread His message. Mary Magdalene definitely was not shy. She has been called the Apostle to the Apostles and it is believed she traveled to Europe spreading the Gospel.
Just because the Scriptures don't say as much about them as they do other, does not mean they were shy.
.

Oh, fer sure. I totally think they were strong, brave, beautiful women who worked very hard--I suspect they surpassed the men around them with their strength, courage, and enthusiasm. After all, they were the ones who stood by Jeshua at the cross and did not flee (right?)
Personally, I consider Mary M as one of the first feminists; independent, single, striking out on her own to travel around and follow what she wanted to do. I admire her a great deal and I wish, wish, wish we knew more about her.

Which is why I think they must have been women who wanted to stay in the background scripturally, and historically.

If you were one of Jeshua's favorites and he confided in you, wouldn't you have been inspired to write a gospel? Tell his story from a "strong" woman's perspective?

Similarly, if you were the mother of Jesus, there from Day One, the only one who could describe all those missing years in detail and tell us details no one else knows...wouldn't you have been impassioned to write a gospel?

The only reasoning I can see for the wise and enlightening words of these two very important women to be quite lacking in the bible is that either they themselves wanted to remain in the background (therefore, "shy")...or, those who put the books together in the 4th Century thought they should remain silent.

But...when I said they may have been "shy"...why are you immediately equating "shy" with the qualities of weak, unsure, and afraid?
As if "shy" is not a good thing to be?

I do hope the OP, who is struggling with her own shyness and pouring out her heart here about it, will not equate herself with these other unappealing qualities...
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  #15  
Old Jan 24, '12, 6:55 am
Romojr50 Romojr50 is offline
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Default Re: How can a shy person serve God?

I'm a person who also tends to be pretty shy as well. Like some people on the thread have mentioned, the key is baby steps. If you feel strongly about a group or program that would help you love and serve the Lord, try to take a small step or make an action that only makes you slightly uncomfortable. It gets much easier once you get your feet wet, so to speak.

That said, there is such a thing as leading by example as well. Just living your life, trying your best to serve the Lord in whatever capacity you can, can teach and inspire others.

One thing to watch out for is that, if you're like me, you withdraw from people as a defense mechanism but sometimes the "fight comes to you." It is a common failing of mine to stand up to the faith when it is challenged by other people; I don't want to risk a confrontation. This is something all of us, shy or not, have to deal with and so I know I have to work on doing better in this department and I would guess it's a common difficulty for shy people in general.
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