Dying From Doubt...No Peace, No Assurance, Just Fear


#1

Dear brothers and sisters,

I beg your prayers. I feel as though I have no where to go anymore.

I made a confession last Saturday. Since that confession I have felt nothing but doubt and fear as to whether I was truly forgiven. My main fear is that I didn’t make a strong enough resolution to not commit my sins again. I didn’t hold anything back in my confession, and I’m not even certain that I made a bad confession at all.

I simply cannot find any assurance that I made a good confession and thus I don’t know what to do.

I have spoken with my mentor/spiritual father about this, and I have been distracted immensely by thoughts and attempts at resolving this.

I feel as though there is mountain of doubt standing in my way.

I am a very analytical person, and I suffer from scrupulosity. These fears have happened before, but this time I feel as though the Evil One has the upper hand and I just don’t know what to do.

I am so scared to trust that my confession was valid, because I am worried that I might be deceiving myself and thus going on with my life in unforgiven sin.

Please, please pray for me brethren. I am a young Catholic revert, I was baptized into Holy Mother Church as a child, but then raised Baptist and got involved later in many other religions. I came home to the Church little over a year ago, and now I feel so lost.

Please pray for me.


#2

God has forgiven you. I too have had my doubts, made my mistakes and wondered if I had been truly forgiven. But God loves you (and me) and God is love. We are only mere humans doing the best we can…so many times have I wondered why my best wasn’t good enough…Don’t despair my friend…Continue to pray and continue to talk to God. He will listen and guide you…Prayers are promised always…


#3

My dear, you’re going to be fine :). If you think you could do better… well, so can we all; just do the best you can. It’s okay to feel scared sometimes, I think, but you can’t let it rule you. Pray for hope, and He will give it too you.

You are certainly in my prayers. :slight_smile:


#4

Satan goes after people who are going to do something great for God one day. You’re obviously very important!

Hail Holy Queen, Mother of Mercy,
our life, our sweetness and our hope.
To thee do we cry, poor banished children of Eve,
To thee do we send up our sighs, mourning and weeping in this valley of tears.
Turn then, Most gracious advocate, thine eyes of mercy upon us.
And after this our exile, show unto us the blessed fruit of they womb, Jesus.
O clement, O loving, O sweet Virgin Mary.
Pray for us, O Holy Mother of God
That we may be worthy of the promises of Christ.
Amen


#5

Always remember that God is within you. Satan is pretty good at attacking us when we are most vulnerable. Your doubts are similar to so many of what we are all going through. BUT don’t let Satan win. When doubt and fear come within you…inhale deeply (like you are inhaling the Word of God) then exhale (the evilness of Satan)…I do this regularly and it helps. I begin to focus and I begin to trust and build faith…Have patience and be persistent against the evil trying to take you over and casting doubt after doubt upon you. I’ve been there and it’s hard to deal with. BUT you can win and you will win. God will NEVER let you down. He loves you…no matter what…Just love HIM back.


#6

Antonius,

You can read from one end of the Gospels to the other of one amazing quality that Jesus had and never really made a big deal about… He knew people’s heart. He knows yours too, and the fact that you believed in His message of salvation enough to go confess your sins and seek His forgiveness is all the assurance you need. That is, after all, the whole reason He came to this world.

Remember too that He taught us about loving our enemies, and forgiving them. You don’t sound like His enemy to me… and if He’d forgive an enemy, how much more assured can we be who love Him?

Perhaps read John 14:27 and do some thinking about what the phrase “not as the world gives” might mean to you.

As a physical analogy, think about how we heal from physical injury. We go to the doc and he patches us up, but we aren’t immediately whole again. Healing takes time; bones must mend; burns must heal; scabs form then fall away. So too with our spiritual healing, Antonius. It’s not unusual to feel doubt about the whole thing, grace, after all, being invisible and undetectable. But it is there, and your sin is gone.

Give it a little bit, do your best to trust around the doubt, and pray.


#7

“This…is what I pray before the Father from whom every family, whether spiritual or natural, takes its name: Out of His infinite glory, may He give you the power through His Spirit for your hidden self to grow strong, so that Christ may live in your hearts through faith, and then, planted in love and built on love, you will with all the saints have strength to grasp the breadth and the length, the height and the depth; until, knowing the love of Christ, which is beyond all knowledge, you are filled with the utter fullness of God.
Glory be to Him whose power, working in us, can do infinitely more than we can ask or imagine; glory be to Him from generation to generation in the Church and in Christ Jesus for ever and ever. Amen.” [Ephesians 3: 14-21]

“Yet ours were the sufferings He bore, ours the sorrows He carried. But we, we thought of Him as someone punished, struck by God and brought low. Yet He was pierced for our faults, crushed by our sins. On Him lies a punishment that brings us peace.”
“We had all gone astray like sheep, each taking his own way, and God burdened Him with the sins of us all. Harshly dealt with, He bore it humbly…God has been pleased to crush Him with suffering…And through Him what God wishes will be done.” “His soul’s anguish over He shall see the light and be content. By His sufferings shall my servant justify many…for surrendering Himself to death and letting Himself be taken for a sinner, while He was bearing the faults of many and praying all the while for sinners.” [Isaiah 52:4-6, 10-11]

“I have chosen you, not rejected you, do not be afraid for I am with you; stop being anxious and watchful for I am your God. I give you strength, I bring you help, and I uphold you with my victorious right hand” [Isaiah 41:9-10]


#8

Hail Mary,
full of grace,
the Lord is with thee.
Blessed art thou among women,
and blessed is the fruit of thy womb,
Jesus.
Holy Mary,
Mother of God,
pray for us sinners now,
and at the hour of our death.
Amen.


#9

Praying hard.


#10

I too have dealy with being scrupulous. You must trust God, and be sure that Satan will try to undermine that trust.

Saint Michael, the Archangel, defend us in battle. Be our defense against the wickedness and snares of the devil! May God rebuke him, we humbly pray. and do thou, oh prince of the hevenly host, by the power of God cast into Hell Satan and all the other evil spirits that prowl about the world seeking the ruin of souls!
Amen


#11

I received the Holy Eucharist today while serving on the Lord’s altar. I can’t tell you the feelings of fear I felt…I simply just went with it and received.

Honestly, I feel like I am just losing hope…I am tasting despair like bile rising in my throat.

I am now considering doing an examination of conscience to remember all the sins I confessed in my last worrisome confession and re-confessing them in a new one.

Now I definitely regret my sins, and they cause me great fear of damnation. I wish I had never done them. And I am more than willing to make the resolution to never, EVER do these things again.

Maybe confessing these sins in another confession will ease my conscience.

I simply MUST do something!!! I feel like I am being torn apart by fear and uncertainty. I feel like I have nowhere to go and that I can’t do anything anymore.

I just want to be free of this burden of my sins. How I HATE them now, if for no other reason than what committing them has done to me now…

I don’t know what to do…I feel like all my hope is gone and that I have nothing left in me anymore.

To my shame, even my love of God is suffering…as I asked Him before:

“Does my pain not twinge Your heart? Does my suffering not move You?” (or something like that).

I just want to be free…how I long, ferociously so, for the days when I had no fear in coming to Holy Communion, when I could simply go to confession and come out knowing that God had forgiven me! I have forgotten all about any thoughts about the priesthood or my future. My every moment seems to be noted by feelings of fear and uncertainty.

I need God now, more than I need my breath. Death would be better than this paralyzing uncertainty!!!

I cannot see anyway out of this…if this is the work of the Evil One, then I cannot help but think that he has become victorious. My joy and peace are no more, and I am constantly distracted by this problem.


#12

Praying from today’s Liturgy of the Hours:

Psalm 142 (143)

Lord, I trust you: do not hide your face from me.

Lord, listen to my prayer:
in your faithfulness turn your ear to my pleading;
in your justice, hear me.
Do not judge your servant:
nothing that lives can justify itself before you.

The enemy has hounded my spirit,
he has crushed my life to the ground,
he has shut me in darkness, like the dead of long ago.
So my spirit trembles within me,
my heart turns to stone.
I remind myself of the days of old,
I reflect on all your works,
I meditate once more on the work of your hands.
I stretch out my arms to you,
I stretch out my soul, like a land without water.

Come quickly and hear me, O Lord,
for my spirit is weakening.
Do not hide your face from me,
do not let me be like the dead,
who go down to the underworld.
Show me your mercy at daybreak,
because of my trust in you.
Tell me the way I should follow,
for I lift up my soul towards you.
Rescue me from my enemies:
Lord, I flee to you for refuge.
Teach me to do your will,
for you are my God.

Your good spirit will lead me to the land of justice;
for your name’s sake, Lord, you will give me life.
In your righteousness you will lead my soul
away from all tribulation.

Glory be to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit,
as it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be,
world without end.
Amen.

Lord, I trust you: do not hide your face from me.


#13

Dear Lord, it appears Antonius is suffering from a bad case of scrupulosity or he just feels guilty because he didn’t have a strong enough resolution to quit his sin. May he mention this confession at his next confession and then leave it all in his confessors hands and never return to the thought of this confession again. Scrupulosity is very painful, I know: I used to suffer from it a lot, as you, O Lord, know; but by your grace, I have been healed from most of it. Grant Antonius the same healing, if he is suffering from the same thing. If he has scrupulosity, he should be seeing the same confessor who can help him with his scrupulosity problem and who can help uproot it before any more of Antonius’ life is ruined. Please help him to find a good confessor, or help him to place his trust in his present confessor. Thank you, Lord, for hearing my prayer.


#14

Atonius,
Feel assured in that God knows the sincerity of your heart, and has forgiven you many times over, even in moments of doubt, you must remember the Devil also tempted Christ to perform a miracle, and make it so that he would not be tossed off of a cliff to his death. And Christ reminded the Devi,l that he should not try God’s patience with him. And God assured Christ even in his doubt and fear in the garden, that he is always with him.
God is always with you, Antonius even when you feel doubt or feel as though you have not done good enough in God’s eyes. God knows your heart, and he knows you seek forgiveness. I will pray an Our Father that God provides you with peace of mind and freedom from your anxieties.

Our Father who art in heaven,
Hallowed be thy name,
Thy kingdom come,
Thy will be done,
on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread,
and forgive us our trespasses,
as we forgive those who trespass against us.
Lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from evil,
Amen


#15

Heavenly Father, I have sinned against others, against myself, and against You. I am unworthy to be Your child. I have offended Your goodness and Your dream of who I really am. I may have denied You the joy of blessings that You wish for me and for others through me. You alone know the entire consequences of my failure. Yet Jesus assures us that You joyfully celebrate my return from sin, and run to welcome and reclaim me as Your own. I want to value myself as Your child, knowing that all worth and holiness comes from You.

In trust, I will not accuse myself for sins already forgiven and absolved or for temptation if I have not actually sinned. I believe that temptation can be overcome by Your grace, inspiring greater faithfulness to the Gospel and the Sacraments.

Look on those tasks of love and service that I fail to undertake or to complete, and bring them to completion. Please bring out of my failures, such fruits of these new opportunities enhanced beyond all previous expectation, for from our human betrayal of Your divine plan of Creation, Your mercy wrought the magnificent plan of redemption that reverberates through time and eternity!

In Your mercy, please transform into good all that in weakness or ignorance I may spoil. I want to give blessing that is abundant beyond original possibility, to anyone I ever harm or deprive. May I so belong to You, may I be so transformed by Your love, that my faults no longer are sin or offence in Your sight and can foster nothing that impedes Your will. This, my soul in trusting confidence implores.


#16

Thank you all (big thanks!) for prayers so far.

It’s been very rocky.

I have been receiving Holy Communion regularly and today when I received it was with less fear…but still uncertainty.

My mentor, who is also a deacon, told me that sometimes we have to walk through the “darkness” instead of trying to resolve it ourselves. He said that going into the darkness exercises our trust in God, and allows God to help us rid ourselves of things that keep us from Him.

Sometimes, though, it seems so risky to trust.

Tommorow I am going to a parish-wide offering of the Sacrament of Reconciliation. There will be many priests to hear confessions, and I plan on making a confession of my venial sins this week.

I don’t know what to do about my uncertainty about my last confession. I will mention it though and see what the confessor directs me to do.

Please remember me, brethren, that God will fill the priest who hears my confession with great wisdom and that I might find a way to resolve this!!!

Gratias!!!


#17

Just for the record, I won’t be attending the Reconciliation tonight, and instead will go on Saturday (since I am not aware of any grave sin). Besides, I will be able to make my confession to the same man who heard my original confession.

But thanks for the prayers. This is all a part of the growing process I suppose…


#18

Please pray this several times a day. :slight_smile:

I believe in God the Father Almighty,
Creator of Heaven and earth;
I believe in Jesus Christ,
His only Son, our Lord,
He was conceived by the Holy Spirit
and born of the Virgin Mary.
He suffered under Pontius Pilate,
was crucified, died, and was buried.
He descended to the dead.
On the third day He rose again.
He ascended into Heaven
and is seated at the right hand of the Father.
He will come again to judge the living and the dead.
I believe in the Holy Spirit,
the Holy Catholic Church,
the communion of Saints,
the forgiveness of sins,
the resurrection of the body,
and the life everlasting.

Amen


#19

Lord, Antonius is right when he talks about trusting in the darkness. That is what I had to learn to do when I suffered from scrupulosity. I trusted both you and my confessor and was able to grow as a result and leave most of my scrupulosity behind. I still walk with trust in you in the darkness, Lord, as you know I walk by faith and not by sight. Thank you, Lord, that Antonius is going about all this in the right way. Amen.


#20

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