Feeling beaten


#1

Hi everyone
I’ve been working on my apologetics on a n-C site, where now nearly everyone (mostly atheists) has become hostile! I started a thread on hell, and was feelng very pleased with myself, and thought, ‘eventually I’m going to ‘win’. Good for me!’

Well, nothing of the sort. There are a few strong characters and they consistently ignore the positive points I’m putting in and keep returing to the negative, to the extent it comes across like I’m sort of fundamentalist bible-basher.

Oh dear. I feel very down. I wanted to do right, and now reconcile myself I probably over-reached myself with a very contentious subject.

I was praying that God would stop me becoming vain with thoughts I was putting forward some really good arguments. I don’t feel vain anymore! But I am worried that I have done more harm than good. This really worries me. And I’ve kind of pranced off the thread with a final word, so it will be hard to go back.

Not sure if i expect many replies here but I’m just feeling a bit down in the mouth, and wanted to be among friends… :frowning:


#2

Thea:

Cheers for your effort!!!

But you may be right on overextension…

Be comforted that the truth is powerful. Even if they were hostile, one or two words that they’ve read may resonate something in their soul. We never know the ultimate results of our acts this side of heaven.

Also remember that apologetics doesn’t mean holiness. There is danger in becoming the ‘prosecuting attorney for God’ for it could lead us to pride. If that’s the case, we are not growing in holiness.

Lastly, don’t be sad for sadness is the ally of the enemy. Just ride it out, then pick your jolly self up again. It is ultimately the smile on your face and the joy in your heart for Christ that will attract.

in XT.


#3

[quote=Thea]Hi everyone
I’ve been working on my apologetics on a n-C site, where now nearly everyone (mostly atheists) has become hostile! I started a thread on hell, and was feelng very pleased with myself, and thought, ‘eventually I’m going to ‘win’. Good for me!’

Well, nothing of the sort. There are a few strong characters and they consistently ignore the positive points I’m putting in and keep returing to the negative, to the extent it comes across like I’m sort of fundamentalist bible-basher.

Oh dear. I feel very down. I wanted to do right, and now reconcile myself I probably over-reached myself with a very contentious subject.

I was praying that God would stop me becoming vain with thoughts I was putting forward some really good arguments. I don’t feel vain anymore! But I am worried that I have done more harm than good. This really worries me. And I’ve kind of pranced off the thread with a final word, so it will be hard to go back.

Not sure if i expect many replies here but I’m just feeling a bit down in the mouth, and wanted to be among friends… :frowning:
[/quote]

What you said is what most people go through, you invest a lot of time, think your making in-roads, but then find out they either ignored it or started trashing your work. Dont worry about it, it happens here all the time. You just have to keep learning and building yourself and fellow Catholics up.


#4

Don’t feel badly when people refuse to acknowledge the truth of what you have said. Remember they treated Jesus the same way. Sometimes we make a bigger impact than we realize, as AquinasXVI so rightly pointed out.

But then there are times when we have to understand that we are “casting our pearls before swine” and just call it a day. It might be better for you to start with those who ask you first for information regarding our faith who want to know the truth instead of :banghead: with people who like to be contentious just for the sake of it.

They like nothing better than to prey on fresh meat–they have no real interest in the truth, but only in sounding clever before others. My advise is don’t waste your time on them. God knows what they are doing and he will be the judge of their words and actions.


#5

Thea,

Don’t be discouraged, but be content with the knowledge that you may have planted some seeds, even if you don’t see them sprouting.

As Della has said, there are times when you just have to call it a day—some people really are beyond our human efforts, though the Holy Spirit might make more of your efforts than you will know.

If you get to the point (here I speak from experience!) where you are fuming and stewing over these folks’ hard-headedness (or hard-heartedness), then shake the dust from your feet. I think that Jesus was so right about this, as of course He knew human nature better than the rest of us.

God bless.


#6

First off, your intentions must always be to glorify God and not yourself. Anytime you think “I am gonna win this one” are your intentions focused on the Glory of God?

Second, pray. Pray for guidence and strength. No man can conquer on their own. It is only through the Divine Hand of God that we can do any good at all.


#7

In addition to the above advice, keep in mind that debating across cyber-space is not the same as doing so face to face with a “real live” person. In the anonymity of on-line forums, people can and do act in a beastly manner which they wouldn’t dream of doing in person. You may have have come up with the most brilliant answer ever on a particular subject, but if the other person doesn’t want to deal with it, they can just ignore it or wave it off in a way they would never do in person.

Anyway, consider the source and the medium you’re working with, and don’t let it get you down. Even if the person you are at loggerheads with doesn’t see reason, someone else listening in on the conversation may. And the value of just setting your thoughts down in writing can’t be overestimated either–consider it practice in sharpening your skills as an apologist. When I was a firefighter, we would have firefighting training that was almost as strenuous as fighting a real fire. It didn’t accomplish any objective good (nobody’s life was saved or house was protected), but the practice it gave us when the real thing came around held us in good stead. Same with apologetics. When you *do * run into a sincere audience, you will be a seasoned veteran.


#8

Don’t feel bad. When Jesus taught to the unbelievers they crucified Him. You should feel lucky that your passion was not quite so painfull.

He who writes and walks away,
lives to apologize another day.


#9

[quote=bogeyjlg]First off, your intentions must always be to glorify God and not yourself. Anytime you think “I am gonna win this one” are your intentions focused on the Glory of God?

Second, pray. Pray for guidence and strength. No man can conquer on their own. It is only through the Divine Hand of God that we can do any good at all.
[/quote]

Amen :thumbsup:


#10

Always remember that when it come to a conversion of the heart, only the Holy Spirit can make that happen. Share the truth; pray for conversion; and let the Holy Spirit go to work. Rejoice that you have found the truth and you are glorifying God when you share that truth, even if the person is too hard of heart to listen…or admit they are listening.


#11

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