Does my mental illness keep me away from the Lord?


#1

Hi, I would apperciate any advice that would be given to me by anyone here. First of all, I do suffer from some form of a mental illness (bipolar). Although I have this disorder, I try to have a positive outlook in life and I try to have a relationship with God. But there are times that I lose hope and when faced with difficult and stressful situations, I tend to lose my faith in Him.

I would like to know if God is still with me inspite of my mental illness. Sometimes I cannot feel His presence at all and I struggle with my relationship with Him and I fall into this darkness and I try to find peace which is so difficult to attain. I get so fearful when this happens and I get this feeling that the Lord had left me and had abandoned me.

I don’t know if my illness or the devil is the one who is trying to play tricks on me, or whether I am just a weak person. But I just need to know if there is still a chance that I can build a stronger relationship with the Lord and how I will be able to do it consistently.

Thank you.


#2

Part of the trouble, mslizzie, is relying on feelings to determine your status with God. Feelings are notoriously unreliable, especially when there is mental illness in the mix.

Be assured that nothing can separate us from the love of God. We can reject it by serious sin, and even then, He is anxiously awaiting our repentance and return to Him.

St. Therese of Lisieux experienced the feeling of being abandoned by God and used those occasions to submit fully to His will. She imagined herself as a plaything of the Baby Jesus which had been cast to the side. At the end of her life, she also suffered from spiritual darkness. You might find her autobiography, The Story of a Soul, helpful as spiritual reading.

God bless you!
Betsy


#3

Yes, God is with you :hug1:
He takes such things into account. It’s only mortal sin that keeps Him away. You are not sinning by having a mental illness. God bless!


#4

Don’t let feelings rule your relationship with God. Perhaps it’s because of going by “feelings” that you’re not being tested, but be not afraid and trust in Him. :smiley:

Even Mother Theresa went through a “dark” period where she felt abandoned.
*
St. John of the Cross saw the dark night of the soul, not as an actual abandonment by God, but as an expression of His love, that helped perfect the soul by purging it of all of its remaining attachment to spiritual faults and earthly things.*

Remember Jesus promised to be with us always, so don’t despair even when things get tough. Continue to trust in Him and ask for your weakness to be strengthened.

But I just need to know if there is still a chance that I can build a stronger relationship with the Lord and how I will be able to do it consistently.

The best I can think of is just pray every time you feel weak. Also remember to read the Bible if you don’t already (perhaps Ephesians if you’re looking for something more specific).

I’ll be praying for you.


#5

Dear Liraco, please remember that our Lord and His Church love you and want to help you, but many of us individual members of the Church are not sure how to do it. Since you are on the Catholic Answers Forum, I would like to recommend two Catholic Answers radio shows that I heard, and that I think will help you to find solace from the Church. They feature Timothy Duff and are called “Spiritual Support for the Mentally Ill,” which was broadcast on November 10, 2006 and repeated on May 28, 2007, and “The Treatment of Love,” which was broadcast on February 13, 2008. Mr. Duff has a ministry that will be of great interest to you. You can hear these show on your computer by going to the radio archives from the Catholic Answers homepage. I hope that this will be some help to you.


#6

Hi Marysann,

Were you replying to Liraco or to me? I was the original poster ( my name is Lizzie). Just wondering.

Thanks


#7

I think it was just a confusion as you were the one asking for help. Those shows would be great to try but I think that shows before 2008 are still not available on their catalogue because of licensing issues with the music they used. I’m guessing the solution could be to remove said music but going back through years of daily audio to edit one by one would be quite the task.

Here’s Timothy Duff’s site for you Lizzie:
guildbjlabre.com/


#8

I am sorry Lirico, I was replying to Mslizzi, but I guess I was having a senior moment and was confused over who the original poster was! Thank you Lirico for providing Mslizzie with the website for Mr. Duffy. I am sure that will be of help.


#9

Thank you everyone!


#10

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