Does God allow for spiritual immaturity?


#1

Having teenagers I ponder this issue often.
I believe I understand the evangelical beliefs on this but I am not so sure I understand the Catholic belief.

We all grow in spirtual maturity. Either towards God or (for some) away. We are in a constant state of change. Our spirituality is volatile. For many many people (certainly myself) this change can come late in life and be rather drastic in nature.

What I wonder is, if I were to have died doing one of the many stupid sinful episodes of my past, would my eternal outcome likely have been different?

If the answer is yes, and for the sake of this discussion we assume my outcome is now better, was the fact that I somehow did not die young simply a matter-of-luck?

How do we view this? Whenever I see the horrible news of a teenager who dies in a vehicle, I think of where they were at the time of death spiritually. Then I think of where they may have matured to spiritually if the turnout were different


#2

No one really knows what God’s final judgement will be. Only God knows where our hearts are in the end. I don’t think age or what you perceive as spiritual maturity or lack of matters in the long run.


#3

I don’t think the Church has an official teaching on this but my thought has always been that at whatever point in one’s life that
God decides to take you, up to that point you will have had every grace and opportunity to either choose for or against him, and living longer would not make a difference. In other words, a person will not necessarily become worse or better if they were to dodge God’s will somehow and live longer. God is perfect, and so is his timing.


#4

Wow, I could have written your post with the same questions. The Holy Spirit started kicking some serious butt about the time Pope John Paul died and it got intense when Pope Benedict stepped into the shoes of the fisherman. I was on a 15 year detour that I now see as seriously dysfunctional from a Catholic point of view and I thought I was a good Catholic.

I figured that all that God had revealed to me over a 6 week period required a “dine-in” confession rather than a “drive-thru” confession. I sat with Father a good hour - 30 minutes longer than I told him I needed (shame on me), but he was kind and generous with his time.

I have been wondering the same things you have. What if I had died during that 15 year hiatus? I’ve even wondered if I am about to die because he brought me home laughs.

I just got out of the hospital after being in for 2 days to deal with chest pain that went up into my neck and jaw and let me tell you, I was at east and at peace the whole time. All I could think about was thank God, father found time for me and how lucky I was by the grace of God to have come to my senses.


#5

[quote=Lux_et_veritas]Wow, I could have written your post with the same questions. The Holy Spirit started kicking some serious butt about the time Pope John Paul died and it got intense when Pope Benedict stepped into the shoes of the fisherman. I was on a 15 year detour that I now see as seriously dysfunctional from a Catholic point of view and I thought I was a good Catholic.

I figured that all that God had revealed to me over a 6 week period required a “dine-in” confession rather than a “drive-thru” confession. I sat with Father a good hour - 30 minutes longer than I told him I needed (shame on me), but he was kind and generous with his time.

I have been wondering the same things you have. What if I had died during that 15 year hiatus? I’ve even wondered if I am about to die because he brought me home laughs.

I just got out of the hospital after being in for 2 days to deal with chest pain that went up into my neck and jaw and let me tell you, I was at east and at peace the whole time. All I could think about was thank God, father found time for me and how lucky I was by the grace of God to have come to my senses.
[/quote]

I had a similiar experience with my first confession after a 35 year hiatus. The priest was amazingly kind and understanding.

It’s wonderful how you have come back. I can relate to much of your story.

My journey included my family. My concern is more that of my family. Although they have converted to Catholicism, they are more on the beginning of thier journey. They are not as interested in reading scripture and studying the faith as I am. I attribute this to thier being somewhat typical teenage and 20-somethings who are still fascinated and enlightened by what this world has to offer and, of course, thier respective futures. My life situation is of course much different. I’ve grown a bit tired of the non-sense this world has to offer and I find myself much more interested in the beauty of God’s creation itself along with wanting to learn more and more about my faith. I think this comes with maturity and age as well as guidence by the Holy Spirit.

Of course I’d like to come home and see them reading the Holy Bible instead of watching a Lifetime movie but I suppose at this time in thier lives this is too much to expect.

But, as the topic of this thread indicates, the whole issue has got me wondering about Gods patience with Spiritual maturity (or lack there-of).


closed #6

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