Feelings of God's abandonment


#1

Hey guys, in the weeks that i have attended University, my faith life has grown.

But I find the more I pray, receive Communion, and go to confession, the more I go into a deep sadness. I still do the same sins, and venial as they are, i see no improvement. Every time i go to repent i feel like my prayers for forgiveness are nto good enough, or that I have simply sinned too many times for God to want to foregive me after al the pain on the cross.

And I hear what my confessor tells me when I talk to him about this, butiti doesn’t really make anything better lol

Is this normal? :slight_smile:


#2

If it isn’t, someone needs to tell my brain that!! I think it could be considered as the “dark night of the soul.” Everyone, if they’re honest, have these times. Just stick to it, and believe that God can work through this, even if you can’t tell that He is. I have to tell myself that almost all the time. :o


#3

It isn’t necessary to feel reconciled, but to know that you are.

If only Luther had understood this…

Deja vu? I think I told someone that on another thread, less the Luther comment.

Just keep trying to cut out those sins, avoiding the near occasion of sin, and trust God through your confessor. That’s the best advice I can offer; (and need to follow better myself).


#4

Emily -

Your sadness at your apparent lack of progress is normal, but I will give you some advice that my husband gave me and see if it doesn’t help. You are sad right now, because you do not feel like you are making progress - but look at how far you have come!

If you will look and see where you were six months ago, one year ago, two years ago, you will start to see how much progress you have already made on your journey. Rejoice in that progress. Set small daily goals for your faith, and then look to see how many of those goals you can accomplish. keep a record of these goals and your daily progress. When you start to feel down, look back over your progress journal and notice where you have improved. Most of all, take comfort in knowing that you are not alone. Oftentimes we must struggle to break free of certain sins, and we will commit those sins many times over before we are truly free of them, but this is not t be a discouragement. The encoragement comes from the fact that we recognize our chains and are actively working to break free. Christ will do the rest.


#5

always remember that God’s mercy is greater than the sum total of our sins. He wants us to go to him and ask forgiveness. He never tires of us.

in truth, the reason why you feel as you do is because the Spirit is upon you, and you are now more aware of your shortcomings. you are truly bless. you have found favor to do spiritual war against the beast. remember, the beast does not challenge those who already are his, you are not.

the battles will only become tougher as you get nearer to God.

mucy luck, and blessings.


#6

Not to sound like a Vulcan on Star Trek, but feelings are often a poor indicator of reality. Mother Theresa didn’t feel very good about her situation, but she persevered and accomplished incredible things.

Another observation I might offer is that the more holy you become the more you realize how truly sinful you are and how fallen the world truly is. That can be depressing if spend your life there; however, the great hope we can trust in is the mercy and love of Christ who paid the price for our sins. Try to sin no more…no that you will…give of yourself to others more…and let the rest take care of itself.


#7

Feelings are not good guides to reality is a good comment. Feelings are a reaction to reality most often - a perceived or experienced reality. Sometimes the perceived reality exists only in the imagination and since we are assured that God abandons absolutely no person, to feel we are abandoned is a reaction to our false imaginory condition for God abandons no one.

Be that as it may, when we start to feel abandoned by God on the feeling level (and God has created us as feeling creatures and feelings are gifts of God) and consolation once experienced is now totally absent it is a difficult time in life and a time when Faith, naked and dark Faith without the support of feelings and consolations, is not so much tested as strengthened for it must now ‘walk without supports’. You are not going backwards or remiss in your spiritual life in any way…actually you are going forward in spiritual maturity - it only feels like going back:thumbsup: since all consolation and supports are now absent … and one must become independant of such matters and walk in dark and naked Faith. As time goes on and experience in this part of the journey becomes the familiar one can actually prefer by very far to walk in dark and naked Faith - prefer it absolutely far more than times when consolation and support was abundant.

It is not unusual at this time to enter into a struggle with one’s faults and failings - sinfulness - as never before and to be sensitive to such as never before which can be a very painful time. There can be other spiritual struggles too. Nor can any person, priest or director bring real comfort and consolation at this time of difficulty and dark and naked Faith. God, however, can of course, and if necessary He will do so and encourage one on the way. Sometimes these encouragements can come through other people and their advice and suggestions.

This dark and naked walk begins to have its own consolation never experienced before and has to be experienced to be known, it cannot be described.

God’s richest blessings on your journey giving you abundant trustful confidence in His Eternal Love and Presence always…Barb:)


#8

You can very well be going through a “dark night of the soul” as St. John of the Cross puts it. No one sees God, and because of this, we may often feel distant from Him. But it is in these dark nights that we grow in our faith and God actually becomes closer to us.


#9

Pray, hope, and don’t worry. Worry is useless.

What you are experiencing is dryness. It is a cross. Ask Jesus to give you the patience, strength, and courage to bear it and every cross He gives you. Crosses are gifts of His love and mercy, they are a share in His hour of glory, that is, His crucifixion and death.

Remember, Jesus falls with you, and He rises with you. He went before you as an example. He fell and you fall; He rises and continues on, you rise and continue on. Trust in Him, pray, and don’t worry. Unite yourself to Jesus, for He is your life and your all.


#10

Some wise words from Father Jean-Pierre de Caussade, author of Abandonment to Divine Providence:

**I experience impetuous desires of acquiring the gift of prayer, humility, gentleness, the love of God; to this I reply: Let us not think so much about our own interests: my duty is to occupy myself simply and quietly with God, to accomplish his will in all that he asks of me at the moment. That is my task; everything else I leave in the care of God; my advancement is his business, as mine is to occupy myself ceaselessly with him and to execute his orders.

It occurs to me that I am still so imperfect, so full of defects and meannesses, of infidelities and weaknesses; how long will it be before I am delivered from these things? I reply at once: By the grace of God I do not love my faults, I am resolved to combat them; but I shall only be delivered from them when it may please God to deliver me. That is his affair, mine is to hate these faults and to fight them with patience, penitence, and humility until it pleases God to give me the victory over them.

The thought occurs to me: But I am so blind that I do not even know my faults, yet my duty is to lament them before God and confess them; I at once reply: I wish to know my faults, I no longer live in voluntary dissipation of mind, I spend a certain time quietly examining my conscience. This is what God demands of me; he will give me more light and knowledge when he thinks it well to do so; that is his affair; I have placed all my spiritual progress in his hands; it is, therefore, enough for the present for me to accuse myself of a few daily faults, as God gives me to know them, adding to them a sin of my past life.**


#11

Thank you, BeckyMarie for sharing from this great spiritual classic. A particularly important work I think as we do grope to find a uniquely lay spirituality, to which this work in particular can speak, along with I think The Autobiography of St. Therese (also online HERE).

Here is a link to the online copy of Abandonment to Divine Providence by de Caussade and also all the Chapters and as you will see from the link almost every imaginable spiritual question or problem is covered by a Chapter heading:

http://www.ccel.org/ccel/decaussade/abandonment.toc.html

Thanks again…Barb:)


#12

Thanks alot guys, that really helps, and thanks for the links to the books. i just kind of figured the dark night (i keep wanting to write knight) happened once in your life, and it’d be…well…darker. i mean, its pretty frakking dark over here, to the point of “I really hate myself” and I find the temptation grows stronger but thanks alot.

To tell you the truth, earlier I said to God “Okay…you won’t give us a cross to heavy for us to carry…but I think this might be to heavy to carry, are you sure you picked the right thing? whatever, your stuck with me, i’m just going to have to keep carrying this cross…wait…thats the point of all of this…so…yeah…right…its really not too heavy, so…smooth God, smooth” :slight_smile:


#13

I can understand just how dark it can get. My main “cross” to carry is that I’m mentally ill. No, I’m not a freak who is on the verge of killing myself or someone else. I don’t “hear” voices that aren’t there. But at times it’s a real struggle.

Sometimes my thoughts try to run away with me. That’s a part of my OCD (obsessive compulsive disorder). There are sometimes the weirdest thoughts come through. That and an irritation from the strangest of things. (I can’t stand odd numbers.)

So, yes, it can get dark. And it can stay that way for a really, really long time. The hardest part is just clinging to God with whatever strength we have.

Keep praying. I know that saying anything else would sound like useless platitudes, so I’ll say no more. And I’ll be praying for you.


#14

It is a good sign of your growing in faith. Don’t get too frustrated over yourself for committing sin - in this itself is another sin of pride. Allowing God to show you what you need to change one thing at a time according to what He knows best and eventually you will be more virtuous.


#15

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