Confused


#1

Good Morning,

I went to a baby shower yesterday and it was for my SIL who by the way had the baby Friday. Anyhow my sister and neices threw together this shower and it was held at their church. My problem is I have been questioning my sister’s christianity. I beleive that christianity is based on Love of Jesus and that if we posses that Love we will manifest it through our actions. Well I feel very unloved sometmes by this sister when in reality she loves me and I know it. I am now realizing that if I want to defend my faith I am called to do exactly what I want her to do. Ouch! because this is an eye opener. How is it that I can defend the faith with all of it’s glory while not unintentionally condeming what I think is wrong teaching. In a conversation at this shower with my practicing catholic cousin she was okay with having wishy washy beleifs because atleast it is something. I don’t think that is a good practice nor am I confortable with condoning it for the sake of at least it’s something. Is it me or am I having growing pains. I don’t think that I am oppessed just really hungry. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

God Bless
Kathleen


#2

Hello Kat. Just my advice, we talk to people of differing opinions in many areas, political, moral, tastes, in all areas we listen, perhaps not agreeing but listening and evaluating all the while.
In religion it is rather difficult to not insist on your convictions since the end result is so very important. You can, and should, state your opinions and convictions, not to insist the other person agrees but simply to let them know what you believe. Living as Jesus teaches us is far more important than being able to quote what He said, however it is also very important to understand what He teaches.
My brother and two sisters had all fallen away from the Church while I have never even questioned. This does not make me a “better” person, but requires me to pray for my siblings. When we talk together each knows exactly what my faith is, each disagree with me, I understand, or at least try to understand their feelings and they understand mine, yet we disagree. After years of prayer for my siblings my oldest sister has finally returned to the Church. The other two may require many more years of prayer, but that’s my job, to always pray for them.
Insisting they agree is pointless, simply let them know your beliefs but more importantly live your beliefs and never stop praying for you sister. Hopefully, someday, she will accept the grace God is offering her.
As far as questioning your sisters Christianity, my advice is to pray for her rather than questioning, God knows her heart better than you, even if she is your sister.
Love is something that the more we give away, the more we receive. Give her unconditional love. If you feel unloved by her, shower her with love, not seeking love in return.
I didn’t quite understand what you said about:

[quote=BOBKAT] I am now realizing that if I want to defend my faith I am called to do exactly what I want her to do.
[/quote]

Be loving, understanding, but always pray.
Let God do His job, He give out His grace, and you do yours which is to constantly pray.
May the peace and love of our Lord, Jesus the Christ, be with you,
Tom


#3

Christ’s love is unconditional. A priest gave me an eye-opener when he clued me in that Christ doesn’t love me more now than when I was away from the faith. He’s pleased that I’ve come home, certainly, but His love remains ever constant. No sin I commit is bigger than His love and mercy. This is what we have to strive to do with the people in our lives…to love others as Christ loves us. It’s not easy. Christ showed us in agony in the garden the pain our sins caused Him. Yet, he embraced the cross. The pain you feel might be a way to gain some empathy for what Christ endures every day for us when we sin.

Remember that we are all at our own level of conversion. The best thing you can do is pray for your sister’s conversion; charitably inform her of the truth, especially if she is spreading false teaching; and then let the Holy Spirit do God’s will. You can’t convert her…only God can.


#4

Thank you both for the insight. As for what you didn’t understand Tom, what I meant is just that, I need to give her just want I would want from her and not expect it, rather than give her my unconditional love and put condidtions on it. I am kinda of working the conditional out of my system and I needed to vent here because of all the great insight here. I always try to help people and I really don’t put conditions on anything it’s just that she is my sister and before she left we had a relationship and now we don’t and it is hard for me to deal with at times. I just want to do what a good Catholic christian should do so that I may at least lead them in the rigfht direction. I am I guess dealing with some really hurt feelings.

Thanks again and
God Bless
Kathleen


#5

[quote=BOBKAT]Thank you both for the insight. As for what you didn’t understand Tom, what I meant is just that, I need to give her just want I would want from her and not expect it, rather than give her my unconditional love and put condidtions on it.

[/quote]

We hear a lot about giving “unconditional” love, but the fact of the matter is, we are not called to do that in the strictest sense.

Our love of others must be conditioned by our love for God. We must be loving them for God. And we must not purport to do something for them “out of love” that would offend God. For example, some people think that it is praiseworthy to lie to protect someone they love. But in doing so, they offend God. So you see that we cannot put our “love” for others above our love for God.

Luke 14:26 If any man come to me, and hate not his father, and mother, and wife, and children, and brethren, and sisters, yea and his own life also, he cannot be my disciple.

Your hurt feelings might be due to the fact that you resent having to do something for her that she doesn’t have to do for you. This shows that you wish to be consoled by her love, and you are therefore trying to love her from your own limited strength. You are not secure in the love of God, for if you were, then you would not resent having not received from the other person. Someone secure in the love of God and being fed with the grace of God can give to another who does not return love. Someone who loves God is willing to suffer from others in order to stay with God. That is not unconditional love, though. True, it is unconditioned by the response of the other, but yet it is conditional on our being in union with God.

Said another way:

Merit consists in the virtue of love alone, flavored with the light of true discretion, without which the soul is worth nothing. And this love should be directed to Me endlessly, boundlessly, since I am the Supreme and Eternal Truth. The soul can therefore place neither laws nor limits to her love for Me; but her love for her neighbor, on the contrary, is ordered in certain conditions. The light of discretion (which proceeds from love, as I have told you) gives to the neighbor a conditioned love, one that, being ordered aright, does not cause the injury of sin to self in order to be useful to others, for, if one single sin were committed to save the whole world from Hell, or to obtain one great virtue, the motive would not be a rightly ordered or discreet love, but rather indiscreet, for it is not lawful to perform even one act of great virtue and profit to others, by means of the guilt of sin.

The Dialogue of St. Catherine of Siena (p. 27)
catholicprimer.org/catherine/catherine_dialog.pdf

hurst


#6

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