Feeling a little 'pestered'. Discernment

I don’t get it! Through-out the last ~8+ years of my life I’ve ‘toyed’ with idea of a religious life around 4 times. Or rather it feels like someone has toyed me with it… The first time I joked about with my cousin as a crazy thought , the second time I mentioned it seriously to a family member then down played it, the third time I got to know a priest I trusted, set up a meeting which I promptly avoided and now… Here it is again a nagging feeling and/or thought “Hey, so how about it? Give your whole being to God?”

I don’t understand it. It’s honestly a little annoying because it’s distracting. I’m just trying to get through medical school! I need to keep focused, sheesh.

What in my right-mind would make me feel like being a priest/religious? Who in their right mind would accept me? How could this even be? I really am not worthy enough nor holy enough. But, there it is again. The pull. Number 4 by my count.

Every time it comes I ponder it, want it, scared by it, look for reasons to discard it and then run away. That was my cycle.

This time I looked for reasons for why it can’t be. Roadblocks would be a clear sign from God. I searched through Cannon law, google this, google that. On and on. I can’t find any truly permanent ones.

So I decide “Ok, so no roadblocks but surely they won’t have any sort of capacity here to deal with me.” I found a place in my country. I found an email address and a phone number. Sent an email, figured "Maybe they won’t even see it. I’m sure they’re busy. Heck it might be a dead email address anyhow, they usually are. " They saw it. The same day. I was presented quite a quandary. Balls in my court! I figured I’d just drop it but instead asked the Holy Spirit for help, called, made my way to their HQ and established first contact.

I don’t know. Through out all my foot dragging, looking for reasons not to, I can’t shake it. I can find 101 reasons to say no. On the other hand, the reason to start looking into it trumps, Thy will be done. Not my will. His. So far I’ve just focused on the ’ why nots’, I have ‘why yes’s’ too, which I’ll focus on with them. But I’m not willing to go through life anymore with the ‘what ifs’.

I have another meeting next week. Today I was nervous, doubtful of myself, happy, peaceful and in awe that I actually talked to someone .  

I broke my cycle this time. I’ve made a series of serious changes and commitments in my life over this past year which helped me. I’m still “battling” with myself less now] trying to convince myself to just turn away but I’ve done that, it doesn’t quiet the feeling or the voice and frankly, things go poorly afterwords. Hound of Heaven [good poem] does not take kindly to fleeing. Or as they say “you can run but you can’t hide”. Not for lack of trying!

I feel nagged and tired of the footsteps. No more ignoring them.

It’s a process, I know. Life’s a process. I have plenty of time to learn/discern and I’m just grateful I was granted the courage so that I’m in the process now.

This is meant to be read in a light-hearted manner, not as in wieghtless but rather maybe a little irony, acceptance and surrender. It’s far too long I’m sure but off I send it to drift through cyber-space.

Can anyone relate?

Thanks for reading.

That’s a simple answer - God’s call. No one is “worthy” enough. But God calls not because we are worthy but because He desires us for that life and He has created us for that purpose. One does not have a vocation because they are holy, they have a vocation because that is the path through which they will gain holiness.

Yes, I can relate! I dug my heels in and ignored God’s call for many years. It terrified me. I could find those 101 reasons to say no but in the end there is one reason to say yes that changes everything: it is the will of God. When I first had that moment of thinking “okay Lord, if this is your will then I’ll do it” it was the most terrifying yet liberating moment of my life. When I first made contact with my community, when I first visited them, when I went for my visit, I could still think of all those reasons to run away.

The thing to keep in mind is that it is discernment. You are simply exploring and seeing if this is the path God is calling you to. Whether it is or not, the Lord has put these desires in your heart for a reason. If you do not at least investigate this path, even if you decide He is not calling, you will always wonder “what if”. But you have already made an incredible first step in making contact.

May the SACRED HEART OF OUR LORD BLESS YOU for this desire!!

Listen, No one is worthy. Absolutley no one. Unless you Count Our Blessed LORD. I am discerning as well, and in the past I was impure. Its something I regret to this day, But, I have confessed it. I will pray for you Brother and Hope and Pray that the LORD will make You a Saint and a Priest for Holy Mother Church.!!!

So happy to hear this, please don’t give up!!

God’s a nag.

It fits with my experience to get the idea/feeling/call and dismiss it as “well, that’s stupid.” It also fits that it can take years to get to the place where you make a move. But I think that was the Plan all along.

See, if the timing is right and it’s the first call, we might say that’s stupid and move on,. So we get “primed” by having these multiple experiences, then, when we reach the point where it’s God’s time, He starts the nagging: The “can’t shake it” Hound of Heaven chasing us down all alleyways until we surrender, nagging.

You write well, if you decide to blog your journey, please post a link.

Thank you everyone for your kind words. I haven’t commented because I heard that corn grows silently.

From my last post I started to tell a few very close people to me this new path I’m on. Pretty surprised to receive encouragement and even a blessing or two (as well as a caution, " you know that means no sex right?" Yes I do.)

The truth is that the more time I spend in Church, in meditation and prayer the bigger the need I see for healing souls and not bones and the more I yearn to do that. It’s funny that when I read the stories now in the Bible I don’t just see them abstractly anymore, I can relate to being in them. Pretty sure they’re about me. I’ve been soaking in a lot of info and knowledge about my faith, podcasts are truly a blessing to those of us with limited access to available teaching. It’s all so fascinating. It explains things the way I used to feel like science did. It gives sense to life and everything.
God has started to invite me farther in with invitations to prayer groups and what not. I’m starting to drop by Church’s to offer my services. I don’t really care if it’s to rake leaves or something else but I feel a need to be of service. Help somebody else, not just myself. Working on getting confirmed as well. All these things are pretty much unheard of me.

Today I was struck with a sense of sadness. I don’t come from a typical story, or a typical family. There’s strife and turmoil in my past and, while it has strengthen me now that I’ve accepted it, the thought that my past could get in the way and earn me a stamp of rejection troubled me. All I know is that the Bible points out over and over that nothing is hidden to God and so I’ve been as honest and sincere with myself, my director and with my confessor as possible. Sometimes though I do think,“Shhh… Don’t tell them that! They won’t let you in!” but the truth is I’m done hiding. At the same time, it’s good to feel that way, I value my relationship with God now, things that draw me away from Him sadden me.

I’m placing my faith in Him, if this is my path there will be a way to overcome the stones in it. I’m just busy trying not to trip! And I remind myself that if it’s not, a path will be provided to grow closer with Him. Fear, I’m told, is lack of faith but the question “Quid agendum? (~What to do now?)” scares me as I grow more and more unfulfilled with my current studies.

All the priests I know are on retreat now so I don’t have anyone else to share this with.

Could anyone point me to some place to find stories of other men who might have had a not so perfect family and raising, with a little turmoil, sadness, emptiness and wandering in their life who also felt called by God? I know of Augustine, the Samaritan women who helps proclaim Jesus is God and a Francis but how about some more recent one’s? They don’t need to be saints! I just can’t seem to find any, I found a certain “black sheep dog” but that stories end is far from comforting . Maybe people just don’t share as openly about it.

Thank you and God bless.

Where would you find them? I mean, why would these people be posting or publishing their stories? These stories are irrelevant to you, anyway. God is calling you, you are all your experiences, as well as your phenotype, so being your unique self must be of value to God’s service. If you are good enough and valuable enough to God as you are from whence you sprang, then it makes no difference who else He calls.

No one is “good enough” because no one is good.

Jesus said so.

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