Hi everyone. What are the disadvantages/consequences to a sinful lifestyle other than Hell? :shrug: I ask because my faith is currently faltering and I am having trouble with staying faithful to the Catholic Church. At this point, I’d rather just live a sinful lifestyle but I at least want to consider the consequences first. Please help me out.
The biggest other than punishment from God…unhappiness. While you might think that doing whatever you want would make you happy, it won’t.
How would you feel after sleeping with a guy you barely know and he never calls you back? How would you feel after a night of drinking and suffering with a hang over? How would you feel not having any real love in your life? How would you feel watching all of your friends get married, but you can’t because you don’t know how to behave in a real relationship. The list could go on and on.
Sins hurt us, not just God. True freedom only comes from behaving in a manner we were meant to behave.
I don’t know if this is what you’re looking for or not. I’m so sorry your having such a hard time with your faith. Being Catholic is a lot of work. I suppose that’s what Jesus said getting to heaven would be as easy as passing a camel through the eye of a needle (or something to that effect).
You might not want to hear it, but you’ll be in my prayers. Hugs to you.
Thanks Nicole. Your post is very helpful. It is what I was looking for.
That said, you are right in that leading a sinful lifestyle leads to unhappiness. I wasn’t totally aware of this earlier when I was considering leading a sinful lifestyle but I am now. I mean, I knew that it would cause unhappiness but I did not think of it at the time. And since you have told me about it, I have realized it. I know it is true because every time I am leading a sinful lifestyle, I am never happy. But whenever I follow Christ and His Church, then I am happy for the most part. I mean yeah, I have my bad days and all but I do have hope in my heart and the blessed assurance that Jesus does love me no matter what. I mean, I know that He loves me even when I sin but when I sin, I don’t always feel like He loves me. When I’m in a state of grace, I know that He loves me because I can sense His grace.
Anyway, thanks again for your post. I hope my post didn’t confuse you. It may be a bit jumbled or something as my thoughts are a bit jumbled right now. But thanks for taking the time to reply to my thread. You don’t know how much it is appreciated.
Yep, one who lives sinfully…becomes a slave to it. It just tangles them up so much, they have a harder time getting out of its painful deception. It usually ruins relationships, especially family ties.
To be truly free…follow Jesus. That’s why its called discipline “disciple!”
Hmmm you make a good point stbruno. I never really thought about how I can become a slave to my sin. Thank you for alerting me to this.
It would probably be helpful to keep a link to this thread as a resource. You will get down again. We all do from time to time. When you feel the “sinful lifestyle” sneaking in, read this thread again. It will help remind you of the feelings you had the first time you read this thread.
If that doesn’t work, you can always post again. Others will have more helpful ideas as well. When I had a bit of spiritual depression, I sat down with my parish priest for about 20 minutes. I know priests are busy, but most are glad to do these things. The talk with the priest was helpful. It wasn’t immediately helpful, but it did help in the end.
Oh ok thanks Nicole. I will bookmark this thread right away.
A sinful lifestyle is the opposite of what we pray for in the Lord’s Prayer when we say, “Thy will be done” to the Father. God the Father is a gentleman, and his reply is, simply, “Very well, thy will be done.” That seldom goes well.
We need grace for more than just the ultimate avoidance of eternal damnation. Deprived of it, we end up in a very miserable state. In a sinful lifestyle, we close our hand into a fist so we cannot take the grace God longs to give us.
We have all heard that we will reap what we sow. This is so universal a phenomenon that not just Christians have noted it. Eastern religions speak of “karma”, a sort of impersonal force that guarantees (in their scheme of things) that what goes around comes around. St. Paul told us that’s not the reason for the phenomenon. There’s a reason we reap what we sow, and that is that God will not be mocked. And God needn’t get nasty about it. When we reject his grace, the consequences just follow.
So even before we face eternal judgment, we face the prospect of a life without the influence of grace if we live a sinful lifestyle. And without grace, things just don’t go well at all. We end up perpetually fighting God for things that we don’t really want, rather than taking what he gives that we need.
Hmmm, good points Gerry! But I am confused about your first paragraph. Could you reword it or something so it’s a bit easier for me to understand? I don’t understand why God would reply saying “Thy will be done.” Could you please explain this to me a little more. Thank you.
Sometimes the temptation to sin exists because the sinful behavior seems to provide the good we actual desire. . . although it never provides good, only the “appearance” of good.
If that is the case, perhaps it is wise to figure out what it is we are trying to obtain in the first place, and seek healthy and holy ways of obtaining it instead of a “counterfeit” that is provided by sin. The counterfeit never fully satisfies, never lasts, causes harm, makes us less likely to recognize the real good, and ultimately hampers our enjoyment of the real good until our minds and hearts are converted.
An example: Sometimes people get into sinful sexual relationships (or even non-sexual but inordinate attachments to the opposite sex) in an attempt to fulfill the real need for true companionship and affirmation. One approach would be to avoid for awhile any romantic relationships with the opposite sex, and seek out peers and friends of one’s own sex in order to grow as a person, to build true charity, to develop self-confidence, to satisfy the good desire for companionship, etc.
Oh ok. Thank you VC for this helpful post.
OK. We pray that the will of God the Father will prevail. But in adopting a sinful lifestyle, we choose to have our own will, not the Father’s will, prevail. My point is that God does not therewith zap us, or force his will upon us in some manner. What he says, is, very well, have it and do it you way - consequences and all! And one of the consequences is that we have cut ourselves off from his grace by refusing to accept it.
And to add to this, sometimes the worst punishment that we receive is to get what we ask for. And as a consequence we learn the hard way, by experiencing the unhappy results.
It sounds like you’re minimizing what an eternity of suffering really means, and perhaps the same with minimizing what an eternity of happiness in heaven really means.
Imagine the worst pain you’ve ever been in. Let’s say you’ve broken a bone, or sprained an ankle. Now imagine it coming from all over your body. Now imagine it not stopping. Ever.
Now imagine the happiest you’ve ever been. Multiply that by about, oh, a gazillion. Now imagine it never ending. That doesn’t even come close to heaven.
Now to your original question. These are the consequences; 2 choices, no middle ground. Sometimes I’d rather be sinful too. But it’s slavery. We could enjoy ourselves for this lifetime, sure. But, as has been said, would we really be happy? Or just being delusional about being happy?
I look at is as being filthy rich. How many people that have ginormous amounts of cash are really happy? They have everything they want, toys, companionship (if you get my drift), freedom from financial pressures, not having to really work, etc. But are they really happy? Look at the Hollywood folks. Beauty, wealth, etc. How many of them are really happy? How many of them down a bottle of pills, or are in therapy just to keep themselves from downing a bottle of pills? How many are slaves to their drug or alcohol habit? How many of them, when they start to lose their looks can be really content with who they are?
Now look at someone like Mother Theresa. Dirt poor. She had nothing. Nothing. She worked every hour of every day for others, completely selfless. Has anyone ever suggested that she was less than content? On the contrary, nobody can be that enthusiastic as she was about her mission without being extremely happy doing it. Nobody.
Yup. Been there. Very true.
Thanks everyone for your contributions to my thread. I really appreciate it.
My dear friend
Sin promises happiness but only brings misery, despair and death. The only way you can be happy in this life or the next is to have a relationship with God. The deeper the relationship the happier you’ll be. You can’t avoid the cross you know, but it’s much lighter and easier to carry when our Lord is helping you. Get very, very close to God and sometimes you’ll just bubble over with joy. This is how you get happiness in this life.
I’ll pray for you my dear friend:thumbsup:
Sinful behavior brings consequences that can be long-lasting, or life-long if you will. It’s not always as if when you’re “done” with the behavior and reconciled with God that the consequences go away.
I have been married for 15 years, now, but still feel some of the consequences of having a sexual relationship before marriage. I’ve confessed it and know I’ve been forgiven, but the consequences will be with me for a long time.
Actions have consequences - consequences that you can not always anticipate and consequences that may not be felt immediately.
Here is a fact: we are ALL sinners. But, why did God put us here? What is our purpose? There has to be a reason other than self-indulgence and the complete lack of nobility that results from falling into a life of sin. I believe we are challenged to do something extraordinary. To know what we are challenged to do I would suggest reading about the lives of some of the saints. The saints were normal human beings who were granted the grace to rise above their sinfulness. That grace will NOT be withheld if you ask for it. I ask for it all the time (because I need it because of my own tendencies toward sin), and I notice it being granted in all kinds of subtle and sometimes obvious ways. We can be better!!! God will give us what we need to do so.
God loves you, more than you could possibly ever imagine. He will forgive you if you really want Him too. Ask for forgiveness, and go further: ask for the grace to rise above your inclinations toward sin, and see where the Holy Spirit leads you.
Yours in Christ.
Hi Holly, the approach I use is the other way around. Why do I not want to live a sinful lifestyle?
The answer, really, is quite simple. Two commandments, one to love God, and the other to love your neighbor as you do yourself.
I try not to sin, because I love God. When you love someone you want to be with them, and Jesus has told us how to be with Him, forever. Love God, forsake sin, serve God.
The second part, love your neighbor as yourself. The love yourself is a part that people sometimes overlook. Loving yourself is not meant as a surface, shallow statement. It means that you love yourself because you know who you are, in the dignified way that God intends, and in the same way the God loves you.