Confused about vocation

Hello. After dating the traditional way and ending up in a string of dead-end situations, I finally swallowed my pride and joined Catholic Match. The second guy I met on Catholic Match was quite the catch for me in terms of intellectual and artistic endeavors. He also struggled with a lot of the same issues as me. I felt comfortable with him rather quickly, and I was attracted to his personality a lot. I tried to not fall too quickly, but it seems that I did fall quickly for him. In the three months we knew each other, I prayed a lot to ask God whether I should pursue him. I was filled with a great deal of comfort in my decision to take a leap of faith in him, but last week he tells me he does not see us as being more than just friends, and today he tells me he met someone last week and it is going well.

I was gracious when I said goodbye, but I am reeling from it now. He was the first man I liked immensely in years (I am REALLY picky and cautious under normal circumstances due to a bad history). I did not give him my heart, but I wanted a relationship to get off of the ground, and the idea of making room for him in my heart had brought me great joy.

I am more confused about God’s role in this. I felt so many assurances in prayer that pursuing this was the course of action to take. I know my gracious goodbye was a sign that I have healed from past hurt greatly, but it still hurts, and I am wondering what this means for my vocation. Was I meant to be hurt to pursue another vocation? What good am I to God and His almighty plan when my heart is wrung out like this? Can someone help me make sense of this? I thought that by joining Catholic Match, I would letting good into my life. I thought that by meeting a man that I finally clicked with, God was finally bringing me something good in my life. Was I wrong? What do I do now? I am trying to trust God, and I do still love God. I am just so sad and confused.

I don’t really have much to say - the main thing I wanted to say was that I will remember you in my prayers tonight.

The only other thing I would say is a kind of cliche, but try to remember that everything happens for a reason - God knows what’s up! I know that’s kind of your problem - that you want to know what God knows. I would like to propose that if you continue to keep up your prayer life, God will bless you in ways you couldn’t imagine. It’s okay to pray to him right now and let Him know you are upset and confused. Continue to bring up your struggles in prayer, and pray for the faith necessary to trust God that He will bring your search for a spouse to a fruitful end - whether that’s actually finding a spouse, or finding out that marriage is not the vocation to which you are called.

In the process, make sure you continue to avail yourself of the sacraments and even go to Adoration - all as your schedule allows. God is not outdone in generosity! (I guess that is kind of cliche too…) Don’t be afraid! Remember that God does not give us more than we can handle, and can bring good out of any situation, even a situation such as yours which you perceive to be a confusing struggle. I hope you are searching for spiritual direction as well.

God has a plan for us all!

I will tell you my love life and how it led me to make a decision to marry the church instead of any woman i met before.

I was 19 when i had my first “love”. This girl was perfect. She was active in the church like i was, she was part of the choir at the same time i was as a child. We were close and we “loved” each other. As the months passed, she began to distance herself from church which led her to distance her from me as well. She began to live a non- catholic life. so that was the end of us.

Soon after that break up, i decided to look for another girl. I met her in one of my parents groups at the church. Her mom was an active member and she would attend some of the meetings we would have at the church. We started to date and she was a very touchy person. She wanted a very materialistic relationship, which at the time i gave into. A month later (yes only 1 month) i found out that she was engaged to some other guy. I also found out that she was toying around with one of my old co workers from a resort i used to work for. So that ended quickly.

The third female i dated was perfect in all ways, she was sweet, attended mass every sunday, was a group leader for a youth group she helped start. For some reason my heart stopped loving this girl and i decided to move on.

4th and last, (to make this one short) she was a very clingy jealous protestant woman. Her mother converted from the Catholic church. I was able to bring this girl back into the Catholic faith and her mother as well after 8 months of dating. I must say that i feel very proud of her and deciding to come back. Anyways, she moved about 2 hours away and that pretty much ended the relationship for us. I was also already starting to lose feeling for her.

My main point in these 4 examples of my “relationships” is this, the lord has a plan for us, and if we choose to deviate from his plan like i did (i made a bunch of mistakes and sinned a lot with these women) he still managed to pull me into the right path he always had laid out for me. My path will be rough but i trust in the lord that it will lead me straight to heaven.

Maybe god has something or even someone out there that will lead you to find your path to heaven. Remember, god has a plan for us all. If we decide to follow it, we will be ever so happy. If we decided to deviate, we will suffer.

God Bless and i will keep you in my prayers.

Bobballen_18, I thank you for your prayers. I needed them and still do need them. I have been trying to get spiritual direction these past years, but now priests are telling me that they want to me have counseling for anxiety along with spiritual direction. They won’t give me their time because I refuse to go to counseling. I do not trust counselors anymore, and I feel like my anxiety is more of a spiritual issue.

Omar4578, the idea of not being a wife and mother brings me to tears. I have had opportunities to settle (an alcoholic ex was the reason I decided I should try Catholic Match). I was so convinced when I got to know the man I was dating through Catholic Match that God had opened that door for me. I am 27 and have suffered through great heartbreak in the last 8 years. I was humbling myself by joining Catholic Match and trying to put my love life directly into God’s hands. I am so against the idea of having another vocation that I do ask God to let me die young if I am not meant to be a wife and mother, because I have absolutely no desire to do anything else with my life. It is so difficult to live and be patient when this beautiful vocation is now being granted to my secular friends. I fight jealousy on a daily basis. I do try to open my heart for God to grant me the desire to want a different vocation, but it has not come.

After all, even a little heart life mine needs love and needs physical touch. I am constantly stressed and uptight because I have no one to hold me. I am trying to throw myself into the idea of loving my neighbor and loving myself, but I need something too. I love God, but it is so hard to understand how this was supposed to be a good thing. He sent someone to me whom I thought fit me perfectly, and now that person is gone and I am left with an aching heart and no idea what to do. My body is dying from the pain. I was so ready for romantic love. I am so ready to have a real purpose. I can’t even see another purpose looming on the horizon.

Im sorry for everything you are going through.

I too would love to have children and in which case i have chosen a path in which i will not have 1-3 kids. I will have 100+. I will have hundreds of kids that i will teach, love, embrace and watch grow into good men and women.

Im sure god has something great for you! Patience is a virtue and you may see greatness soon! :slight_smile: My advice is to pray daily and live your life normally. God will eventually show you the way! Who knows, that special guy might be right under your nose now and god is just waiting until you or he are ready! :slight_smile: I hope this helps. God loves you and only wants the best for you! :blush:

God Bless

HI Margarete,

I am so sorry for the heartache that you are feeling right now, and I am sure everything is still really upsetting to you, too.

I agree with this part of omar’s post to you:

Im sure god has something great for you! Patience is a virtue and you may see greatness soon! My advice is to pray daily and live your life normally. God will eventually show you the way! Who knows, that special guy might be right under your nose now and god is just waiting until you or he are ready! I hope this helps. God loves you and only wants the best for you!

Hang in there, dear one.

Please pray for me. I really struggle with living normally and trying to push this vocation out of my mind. I honestly believe life is not worth living if my purpose is to be anything but a wife and mother. That is not a threat, just a fact I acknowledge to myself. God will be condemning me to so much unhappiness if this continues. I love God, but I don’t know why He does not find me worthy of this beautiful vocation. I have made mistakes, but my goal is to be the epitome of Catholic womanhood… I fail because I am doing it alone, and a heart like mine needs love to carry on. I know God loves me, but I don’t know why He is not giving me the opportunity to thrive in life. I do see this as something He has 100% control over. I know my will is not God’s will, and I should submit myself to God’s will. I try, I really do. But that man was special to me. I am so weary of having to start again all of the time. And I am not some ugly, stupid girl! Even on a superficial level I am attractive enough. I try to be myself.

I always thought I would be the girl married by age 22 since my heart was always open and ready for love. I waited with patience when that did not happen. My heart got torn apart by 23, and it took me until 26 to be ready to date again. The first try was a Protestant who did not lead a godly life and would flip between wanting to be with me and pushing me away. I left the relationship because I felt alone in the relationship. The next was a guy I worked with who was not attractive nor going places in life, but he was completely beloved by our office. He had a son out of wedlock, so I prepared myself to accept this. It was when I realized he was a raging alcoholic that I decided to leave. The man on Catholic Match suited my personality and my humor. He could recommend books to me (a big deal, in my opinion). I am a writer, and so was he. He repeatedly told me he wanted to kiss me… I am thrown off by the fact that it was just “flirting” that meant nothing in the end. I don’t condemn him… I just wish God would allow His goodness to brighten up my life so the loneliness is no longer dominant. I want to bear and hold my children. I want to hold my husband. I need this. I am literally begging God to be merciful enough to allow this to happen. I know that is not how God works, but I need Him to hear me.

Margarete,
Dear precious daughter of Eve, I feel for your confusion. Please hear me when I tell you, you are loved.

Proverbs 14:12 There is a path before each person that seems right, but it ends in death.

I fear you are defining your path rather than trusting God for his province and grace. Part of this journey in life is the discovery of who we are, why we are here, and our place in the cosmos. It doesn’t magically happen by 22, and for some they never find it because they are not seeking. You are seeking and this is a very good thing.

Your confusion about God’s role comes because God is not giving you what you want. God is not Santa Claus. He loves you and has given you a life, free-will, and potential. He has also given this to other people as well. You are looking for perfection in men, and there has only been one perfect man so far on the planet, Jesus. “You can’t always get what you want.”

You have been hurt. Trust is far from you. The yearnings of your heart have not been met. You are in pain. Do NOT let that define your life by ending the story.

1 Peter 3:9 Do not repay evil with evil or insult with insult. On the contrary, repay evil with blessing, because to this you were called so that you may inherit a blessing.

Wow, that is a tough verse.

God is so infinitely good, the even when evil is in his hands, evil MUST do good. He proved this by his Son. Jesus came to us and we beat him, we insulted him, we betrayed him with a kiss, we rejected him and WE killed him. God took that evil and made it the salvation of all mankind.

God calls us to trust him, that he is both good enough and powerful enough to take the evil in our lives and turn it to good. It is his call to you. You must trust God, for there is no other solid foundation.

He did not cause this to occur to you, but God the Father wants you to feel his love and being in-spite of the free decisions of others. God wants a relationship with you, and yet you are telling him, “I need another”.

You are a woman, and feel the need to be a mother. This is normal and good. Don’t just consider this role a biological one, but a spiritual one as well. Be a force for life on the earth, not just biological, but spiritual.

prayers-for-special-help.com/prayer-for-strength-to-forgive-others.html
dailyprayer.us/prayers/forgiveness.php

This post is not meant to make you feel better, but is meant to show you are loved. Sometimes, like the sappy song states (but for the wrong reason), love hurts. Jesus lived it, so can you.

Don’t choose the road leading to death. There is no love at the end of that road.

NeuralMonk,

Thank you for urging me to remember God’s will above all things. I am trying to accept God’s will. I am just afraid that God’s plans for me will make life Hell for me to the point that I do lose Heaven. My heart has reached its limit, and I am trying to be strong and look to God.

I love God, but I also believe He created me with this desire. The fact that the desire lingers, unfulfilled, confuses me. It hurts me. I am trying to look for the point in it, and all I see is a great deal of darkness that I have to fight, even after fighting through darkness for years.

Pray for me, that my heart may change.

I’d just stick around with Catholic Match. It might be the third guy you meet…

I’m being a little facetious, but I think this is a temporary disappointment. I know it hurts, but you’re not going to gain anything just by giving up. I met my own wife in a single Christian’s group (Protestant), although in my case I had a bit of a nudge from the Lord.

In my case, I’d been married once before, but it had been a disaster. With hindsight, we were never suited, and the marriage should never have eventuated. If anything, she has suffered more than I have, and if there’s one part of my life I’d like to be able to go back and fix, that would be it.

However… I became a Christian around the same time as I was going through the divorce. And for some years I was a celibate single - nine years in fact.

But I was getting a bit toey, especially as I watched most of the other younger parishioners getting married off, sometimes to each other. So I talked to my old pastor.

He said, 'Well, maybe you’ll meet someone at a conference or something." So off I went to conferences -… you name the topic, I was there. But to no avail.

Back to the pastor, tail between legs. “Oh”, he said, “That’s not quite what I meant. I was thinking of something like ‘Christians without Partners’, or something like that. At least that way you’re both looking for the same thing.”

But precisely as he said the words “Christians without Partners”, this very brief sense of bubbling joy hit me. It was very brief, but quite obvious. I knew even then that there was someone there.

So off I went to ‘Christians without Partners’. The second time I went, I met my future wife, only to find out she was going on six weeks holiday to the USA with friends of hers. “Typical” I thought to myself, “she’ll probably meet some Yank while she’s over there.”

But no, she came back, and in due course got to know each other, and we’ve now been married for 23 years.

The point is God knows you. I had that brief element of ‘bubbling joy’ which was a bit of a give away, but He knew what the situation was, and what I wanted. And responded.

So put this one down to (very disappointing) experience, and just keep on keeping on. Don’t go reading too many issues into it eg. Does God want me to be a religious? Am I always destined to be single? Should I volunteer for the next Moon landing? First female on Mars?

Just stick it out.

That’s the problem… I had my moment of “bubbling joy” with this man. It was sometime after our second date. Our dates were going well, but I was trying to learn more about him and discern his possible role in my life, whether as a friend or as something more. We spent a long time on our second date walking around the neighborhood and talking. It was dark, and the neighborhood is a rather quiet one. He could have easily have kissed me any time during that walk, but did not (which to me, is a big deal since it seems that men try to move too fast for me).

We were texting a few days later, and he wrote “Well, I wanted to kiss you on Saturday.” It was that moment that I had that moment of “bubbling joy”, because I had wanted him to kiss me, but I was afraid that if he did, he would try to move fast. I just felt that his desire to kiss me, coupled with the restraint of not actually doing it, signified that this man, who I already found to be intelligent, witty, interesting, and possessing the desire to follow God, would be capable of rising to the challenge of being the protector of my own heart. The joy I felt… I prayed about it, I asked God in my heart whether I should follow this man on that path, and I felt assured that that was the path I should take.

I would have held out for him, but one thing I don’t do is hold out for people when they want to pursue something with another person. But that means that he is not the man God meant for me to be with… after I had waited over 3 years to feel secure about my affection for another person. I just don’t understand why God led me down that path, unless I completely misread God when I was in prayer. THAT is why I started this thread… I thought God had given me the answers. I don’t know what to do now.

I think our concepts of “bubbling joy” are somewhat different. In your case, you had been going out with the person, and I get the sense it was an emotional high.

Whereas in my case I hadn’t even met the lady. The “bubbling joy” was a very brief sensation that broke through out of nowhere precisely as the pastor said the words “Christians without Partners”. There wasn’t much emotion in it. I think it was of spiritual origin. I’ve had other “spiritual” experiences as well, so it didn’t strike me as strange.

I can only repeat what I wrote before - I think you ought to stick with Catholic Match, but be wary about your emotions. Human relationships can be very frustrating, and sometimes God uses them to train us in patience and other virtues.

Dear Margarete,

I want to share my story with you. I’m also lost right now. I can sort of relate.
When I was seventeen, I met my first love, who was nineteen at the time. I was raised Catholic but never prayed or incorporated faith into my life. Honestly I’m not sure what I believed. He was raised as a nondenominational Christian and was stronger in his beliefs than I, but didn’t live his beliefs either. I loved him dearly but our relationship was not healthy. We weren’t thinking about God’s commandments or living according to them what with premarital relations and partying a lot together. He also struggled with drug abuse, and was off and on probation due to brushes with the law because of substances. Eventually, his recreational use turned to addiction and he became hooked on heroin. I would go through his coat pockets and find needle caps sometimes. I don’t know if either of us realized the depth of the situation. We lived together for about two years, struggling to make things work. We dated for about four years.

Then a year and a half ago, before I turned twenty one, I had had enough with my life. I was hurting so badly from the inside out, and I was hurting my family more than I knew. I put the drugs and alcohol down, and I started to pray. I grew so strong in my faith and so close to God. I could feel his loving presence begin to heal my emotional wounds, and slowly I started changing back into the person I was meant to be. I prayed to God to intervene in my life and that he use me as an instrument- that he make my vocation clear to me, even if it was one step at a time. I got serious about school. I started taking Chemistry and Calc classes. I started following God’s will for my life. I changed my cell phone number, leaving behind all of the people I used to hang out with. They weren’t bad people… they were just sick… and I needed to get better. My dear friend and love was one of the people I had to leave behind. It was so hard for me and I didn’t want to leave him or his family, who I was very close with. But I knew God needed me to be apart from this person I was so deeply attached to. Shortly after I began putting space, he began dating someone else, much to my heart break. She was a very nice Filipino lady in her thirties who didn’t drink or smoke, who I believe was married, but to a man who was gone all the time, I guess. It hurt me nonetheless- he often told me that I was his soul mate. But I saw my dear get increasingly sick… It was killing his family, and it was jeopardizing God’s plan for me.
I kept in touch through email with his mom, who was proud of me and supported my decision. My mother and her were also in a support group together that met up once a month. A few times in the past year, my dear and I would email back and forth, mostly angry and confused emails on my part, sad emails from him. He was still seeing his new girlfriend, and every time I heard about it, I felt my heart break all over again. About eight months ago, I found out he had been talking to another girl occasionally while we were on one of our many dysfunctional “breaks.” His mom insists he never cheated on me, but in my hurt I told him not to email me anymore.

I continued to immerse myself in school and work, meeting some friends. I continued to pray and go to church. I mended and strengthened my family relationships, ashamed of the person I had been. I still thought often of my dear love, wondering if we would ever run into each other… if he would change. Maybe we could try again. I heard news relayed every few months… A few months ago, he was driving and shooting up. Not even a week later, he was pulled over intoxicated again. My little brother and him both ended up in jail together that week after I had had a dream that they would, on separate offenses. My brother, who is eighteen, is also a drug addict, and was pulled over after he had drank several beers and gotten behind the wheel. From what I heard, my dear had a pattern of messing up and then stay clean for ninety or so days. During one of his recent clean periods of time, he got into another big university. He had previously attended one but was kicked out after a year.

Continued…

I had hopes that my dear sweet boy would get better, and maybe God would bring us together again. A week ago, the night before Thanksgiving, my mom got a text from my dear one’s mom. He overdosed and died that night in a public restroom. He was twenty three years old. My heart is so broken for my beautiful sweet friend and his family. I was able to see him again, but not the way I ever thought I would. There were so many people at his funeral… He touched so many lives. But he was sick. I know he’s not suffering anymore. I’m trying to be there for his family. In the meantime, I’m trying to finish out this semester of school. and I’m trying to accept that things happen for a reason. I know that I was so deeply attached to this person, that it was by the grace of God alone that I was able to part myself from him a year ago. If it had not been for that year of healing and following God’s plan for me, I don’t know where I would be right now. This is a plan that opposed my own will completely.
I don’t know what God’s vocation for me is. Other than the medical field I am going into. I hope someday I might find someone strong in faith and healthy to be my partner in this life. I feel a strong desire for this. However, as we can see, this does not necessarily mean that this is God’s plan for me. Maybe I will meet someone wonderful, but we will only have a short period of time to spend together. These tests and trials happen for a reason that we aren’t always privy to. I know now what is most important above all things is my relationship with God, helping others here on earth, and my preparation for eternal life, because this life is fleeting. Ultimately, God’s plan is best, whether we realize it or not.
You have my thoughts and prayers Margarete. Life is not easy, and our suffering is real. Let it bring you closer to the Lord. Let him comfort and heal you. Draw strength from him. He has a plan for all of us, and we all must accommodate to his will. I think when we look back, we see it was for the best all along…

God Bless :heart:

From what you’ve said above, you’ve been through a bit yourself. There’s not much you can do for this past partner of yours, other than pray for him. He made his own decisions, for better or worse. And we all answer for our own decisions. To be honest with you, I think he wasted his life with drugs and some very bad decisions.

It’s important that you don’t waste yours. From what I’ve read, you seem to be pretty keen on doing what’s right, and trying to do God’s will for your own life. Good for you!

I think the best thing you can do is to move on. God knows you, your background, and your experience. If He wants you to meet someone, you will. But when you do, realise that as far as God is concerned, your original relationship is dead and buried. Don’t keep bringing it up.

In the meantime. just keep on keeping on.

Bob,

Thank you for listening and reading my story. I also appreciate you taking the time to comment. It’s been difficult… knowing how to go about things in the best Catholic way possible. I’m trying to be a source of support and comfort for his mom, who I’m close with and who has never been married/has no other children. I’m also trying not to question things too much. His death brings up some very complicated questions in my mind, like “Can the deceased see us? Is he with God?” and basically wondering what heaven is like and about the overall mystery of death. I’m an analytical person. At the same time, I realize we’re meant to believe like children. I think there is a fine line in regards to these questions, one that I don’t want to cross. I wonder if I should ask a priest for guidance.

I don’t think it would hurt to get some advice from an experienced priest.

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