“But God is all powerful, has existed forever, yet decided to create us. Why? Was there something missing in God;s life that it was not sufficient to simply always be and have been, that he had to create us, the ultimate aim being for us to get to heaven to praise him? Why would an all powerful God need such a thing?”
He didn’t need to, God is lacking nothing. If He had willed it, it would have been sufficient that He should always be and have been, but that was not His will. As the Lord said to Job, “Will we have arguing with the Almighty by the critic? Let him who would correct God give answer!” (Job 40:2). Guess what Job did! (He shut up because he realized he was “of little account” (Job 40:3) and was in no position to correct the Lord) Are we so bold as to think we are smarter than God that we should critique what and why He has done what He has done? I’m not implying you are, but in your question, the answer is a question. He simply created out of love for us to share in Him. It was His will that it be done, and it was done, it was not out of a lack of anything.
“I can relate to that - I have kids, but I want them to fly the nest when theyre ready, and I want to get out of their way so they can get on with their life. I most certainly dont want them back at my door in 30 years time badgering me with the never ending mommy, can I have the keys, mommy, where’s your purse, mommy, Im having a slumber party again… mommy…
So, God is All, and pure Love, and the greatest expression of this Love, is us”
“But why? We desire to procreate to ensure our genes survive. God has no such need.”
As Jesus said to St. Peter when Peter rebuked Jesus for saying He must suffer greatly and be killed, “Get behind me, Satan! You are an obstacle to me. You are thinking not as God does, but as human beings do.” Matthew 16:23. Of course, Jesus is not saying Peter is Satan, but The Father of Lies puts these doubts and thoughts in our minds. In the same way you are thinking as a human, naturally, but one cannot put human logic and thinking into God. Being made in God’s image does not mean we share His mind and knowledge or way of thinking, but that we have an immortal soul that longs to be reunited with Him. I was simply using the closest analogy I could, as I said, it is not perfect, as nothing can perfectly capture the Mind and Will of the Lord.
“But, that divine love wouldnt be for us, if he didnt create us. Why us? There couldnt have been anything incomplete in God, yet there seemed to be this need to make us, and have us lavish unending praise and worship on Him.”
There was no need to make us, that is essential to understand. He did make us however, out of love. Why He created us, sometimes it’s useful to humble ourselves and simply say, “I don’t know,” and frankly, I don’t know the correct Catholic answer to that question, it’s a very deep and thought-provoking question, maybe someone else will chime in with a more complete answer. Otherwise, I’d suggest maybe directing this question to one of the apologists on the site, or maybe seeking out a priest at a nearby church. I’ve always just understood and accepted that we were created out of His immense love. The need for us to worship Him, is for our benefit, not for His. Not only is it right to give Him thanks and praise (as is said in the Roman Catholic Mass), but it is beneficial to us in that it brings us closer to Him. It is edifying to praise Him, it works wonders for our emotional, psychological, and physical state. If you won’t take my word for it, stason.org/TULARC/health/alternative-medicine/Prayer-Health-Benefits.html, there is a brief article about several studies. However, the point isn’t scientific proof of the power of prayer, but rather the inner peace and contentment one experiences when they have a devoted and healthy prayer life.
"My understanding takes a serious nose dive here. Not only were we created to praise and worship God, forever, but God knew we’d mess it up on earth, making it highly likely we wouldnt get to heaven, according to God’s own rules which He set, and he always did know that even before he made us, yet he went ahead and made us anyhow, and then sacrificed his only son to save us, and theres still no guarantee his creatures will make it.
I am completely completely stumped here."
Again, I’d say, one, you are thinking as humans do and not the omnipotent God, which is natural. Second, I’d say that in God’s plan, it was always His will that it be participatory, in that we all participate in the salvation of souls. Anything worth having is worth fighting, even dying for. Heaven is worth sacrifice, fighting for, and dying for. Characterizing Heaven as highly unlikely is, with all due respect, erroneous, from a Catholic standpoint at least. Holiness and saintliness is attainable for anyone, it is there for the taking, via His Son and our Lord Jesus Christ. He came down from Heaven as Jesus Christ because only God can bridge the infinite gap between us and He; only by becoming man could God save man, which He always willed would be part of His Divine Plan. It would be hypocritical if God were to call us to be like Him without ever having been like us. But He did become us, suffered the rigorous life of a poor Nazarean, executed as a common criminal. He was hungry, cold, tired, happy; He laughed, played with children, cried, made friends, was betrayed and abandoned by those He trusted, all the things we experience as humans…(continued in next post)