How do I have faith?

I consider myself to be an agnostic atheist, but lately, things have been very stressful. I started saying prayers the Archangel Michael, starting on a miserable day last week, and I somehow felt strength after praying. Last night, I said one to the Archangel Raphael. I’m open-minded and want faith, unless my newfound trust in angels counts.

I talked to a priest about a month ago and asked him about how I can have faith, and he said (as if he were reading my mind because that’s what I personally struggle with) that I need to have faith in what I can’t see. There has to be some kind of sign here, but maybe I’m overthinking.

I don’t know. My family is Protestant and I tend to lean more toward Catholicism these days.

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Faith is a gift, to be nurtured by prayer and study. “But if you can do anything, have compassion on us and help us.” Jesus said to him, “‘If you can!’ Everything is possible to one who has faith.” Then the boy’s father cried out, “I do believe, help my unbelief!” Mark 9:22-24
I often pray from the heart or aloud, Jesus, I believe; help my unbelief. It’s a blind trust. Like you trust the angels. That’s a great start. I am new in the faith; was baptized and confirmed Easter 2018. Maybe start simple. Do you believe Jesus was a man? Learn some facts for starts, and see where that leads you. I hope you come home to the church. Catholicism is awesome :smiley:

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I do believe that Jesus was a man. I’m really considering it.

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I hope it goes well for you.

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If you read the Gospels, you’ll see that he was an extraordinary man. I guess the fact that he’s also God helped. :slight_smile:

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Sammy, when I read your post I thought of this…

John 6:44 “No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws them, and I will raise them up at the last day."

The fact that you are here and even looking for faith is the Lord working within you. We are drawn in different ways, some by knowledge, some by tragedies, some by love, some by curiosity, some by miracles and signs, etc… Getting to know the angels is an awesome start. Maybe you can’t see them (yet) but look at the number of Saints who have. Just keep exploring and praying, and seek the Lord with all your heart, mind, and soul.

A prayer for you…

Heavenly Father, may your love fill the heart of Sammy as he seeks you. May he see your presence in everything and see all your mighty deeds throughout time and throughout the world. And most of all, may your Holy Words begin an inferno within his heart that burns for You. Amen!

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The prayer to St. Michael is very powerful. No wonder you feel increasing strength and faith. As a suggestion, start to pray the Rosary and you’ll find incredible faith and peace–and direction in your life.

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Don’t just lean towards Catholicism, come on over and join us. We love to have newcomers to the Church.

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Faith is a gift, ask God and He will give you that gift.

Now, belief is something else. Belief is an act of will.

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I think agnostics sometimes miss the point that they take many things on faith, because they cannot verify them themselves. For example, we accept that the sun is 90,000,000 miles distant from the earth because competent scientific authorities vouch for the fact. So faith is not such a foreign concept.

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I spent 60 years seeking the truth in various Protestant churches. When I took my first serious look at the Catholic Faith, my heart, my eyes and my faith were opened to focusing on the truth. RCIA classes are starting, so you might want to join one to learn more. I did.

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Thank you.

Live like someone who has faith would live - then you will have faith. Someone told me that many years ago (a non-Christian ironically). I have come back to it many times since then.

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I came from an agnostic mindset myself. I always thought about the Catholic Church, “If that’s true, then I want to believe it.”

As I was seriously considering joining the church I came across Mark 9:24 "Immediately the father of the child cried out and said with tears, “Lord, I believe; help my unbelief!”

Turns out it’s ok to ask God for faith, “if He’s real”…(btw, He is :slight_smile: )

And I believe He’s smiling intensely on a soul sincere enough to speak publicly about his search and desire for the Truth.

One of the keys to understanding and faith is that God wants a relationship, not a business transaction. Yes, He could appear in your face and you’d believe with no trace of doubt. But that’s like setting off dynamite in front of a mouse.

God wants a relationship with each of us, each on our own terms. So there’s going to be ups and downs, moments of confidence and doubt, but as things proceed, more confidence than doubt.

The fact that, as an agnostic, you sincerely reached out in prayer is, in my opinion, huge. And it sounds like you received a great grace as a response.

Most especially, be gentle with your own soul on this journey, and do ask questions as they arise. Both here and to God directly. Probably first try asking God and see how the answer you feel seems to sit with you. And search similar questions here to verify, just to make sure it’s God’s voice you’re hearing and not your own telling you what you want to hear (which we all struggle with!)

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“Faith is what someone knows to be true, whether they believe it or not.” – Flannery O’Connor

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This is so true!

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Thanks very much.

Hi Sammy!

Thanks for your post! I needed to read it. I, too, struggle with faith. In my case, I believe in God, but, have doubts that He’ll be there for me “the next time”. As I always say, I shouldn’t be here, but, here I am! So, He must love me despite my doubts. He is real!!!

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My gradual journey in faith started about twenty five years ago. I now believe the first sentence in the Bible to be an absolute truth, “In the beginning; God created the heavens and the Earth”. I consider creation to be the biggest miracle. If God can create the universe, and create Adam from dust, then every other miracle is minor by comparison. Raising the dead, virgin births, feeding the five thousand, etc.

Faith requires that you do not just believe that Jesus was a man, but he was raised from the dead. Jesus must love you, me and every one of us as he loves himself, because he died for us.

Faith requires that you have to do something, day by day, we are all on a journey. May the Lord bless you with the wisdom, strength and the peace to do his will.

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@sammy16, there are two very simple, very short prayers I say when I’m struggling.

The first one is the Jesus Prayer : “Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.”

The second one comes from St Faustina : “Jesus, I trust in You.”

These two prayers have always helped me find again my relationship to Christ when I thought I had lost it. Maybe they could help you establish yours.

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