If you don't want to read a rant about myself, feel free to ignore this


#1

WARNING! This is a quasi-confessional, get-it-out-to-get-over-a-panic-attack rant about me. I’m feeling down. Feel free to ignore this because I don’t have a blog and I stink at blogging, I don’t do diaries well, and I just need to vent somewhere and not feel threatened about my religious perspective.

Here it is -

I’m not perfectly contrite.

As far as I know, I don’t have any mortal sins racked up against me, because I went to confession not quite a week ago, got them off my chest, and am working toward fixing my messes, but then again, I know of a priest who had an NDE where he died and was going to Hell, and if a priest can’t make it, I’m in a lot of hot water.

One thing he talked about was knowing that God existed in his mind, but in his heart they weren’t real, just “imaginary friends,” sort of.

Here’s me - I believe in God because without Him, the universe is pointless and has no meaning. I’m terrified of finding out differently. There are even times when I think annhilation after death is worse than Hell, because at least in Hell you still exist, you have that much dignity afforded to you by God. Intellectually, what’s better than God? Legally, without God, we don’t have a leg to stand on.

But sometimes I go through bouts of depression and sometimes I get very scared, asking, “What if there is no God?” I’m not one of those people who’s like, “No God? Yay! Bring on the sex and booze!” I’m one of those existential dilemma people, “everything is meaningless and nothing is good without Him!” types.

Does this make me a doubter? Gah!

I could so put up with Purgatory! Pain and hellfire, yeah, bring it on! I still exist, I haven’t cast myself into the deepest pit, I’m not going to be abandoned by God because I didn’t abandon him! Gimme gimme!

Compared to the alternatives, Purgatory is a walk in the park!

But I’m absolutely terrified that because I’m not as emotionally close to God as I know I should be, that sometimes I have serious doubts, and that I’m still a sinner when it comes down to it, that I’ll have my whole life spelled out for me and I’m going to hell, do not pass go, do not collet $200.

And what makes me feel worse is that I’m upset that I’m not perfectly contrite. I’m sad and angry that I keep messing up, but that nasty little “am I contrite enough to go to Heaven?” keeps rearing its ugly head inside my mind. I feel rotten and I feel like I’m waiting for the final impact.

I know God is merciful, that’s why Jesus gave us the Divine Mercy Chaplet, but if He’s going to be fair and just, He has to punt some people. I can’t see myself being good enough in my soul to deserve heaven, under any circumstances, and I don’t know what kind of graces I’m needing or even looking for to overcome my base stupidity.

I mean, here’s this - Sunday I hadn’t had much sleep and was over-tired going to have company, and I was thinking, “I’m too exhausted, I won’t go to Church this morning,” but I dragged my sorry carcass to Mass and stayed for the whole thing, and I’d gone to confession, so I could receive the Body and Sacred Blood, and I even made myself not eat anything so I wouldn’t jinx that.

I guess that might be grace, dragging me out of hell despite my base self kicking and screaming like a whiny brat, but if it is, I’m doomed, because if I am so pathetic that grace comes to me just to keep me from messing up on a Sunday, then I’m in sorry shape.

People sit down and read the Bible every day. I have to drag myself to it once a week, give or take, and I don’t do well saying the Chaplet even though I should. And come on - all my friends are either former Catholics turned Wiccan or they’re outright Pagan without having ever been Christian of any sort. And I don’t have the ability to change their minds because I stink as an apologist. I don’t want my friends going to hell, either, but I can’t make them change themselves when I’m such a sorry mess.

I don’t know how to even ask for help from God because I’m just that pathetic.

Blah. There’s nothing like a dose of reality to make you reconsider how you handle your life. I just wish I were better somehow, and I don’t know what to do to fix me so I’m not pushing Him away.


#2

I read your post and I keep you in my prayer, Tabitha. I like to respond to a few things you said as I have limited time. You hang in there - even if you are dragging yourself to it once a week, someday, you look back and you’ll be glad that you did it. Continuing pray and read Gospel and go to mass, Tabitha.

You can tell Him that - that itself is a great prayer!

Do you know that sometimes, I think I know what to ask from God but all I did ask was all about me and not about Him. So, not knowing what to ask from Him can really help us allow Him to give us what He knows best – but what He knows best for us is not always what we are agreed with.


#3

NONE of us deserve heaven.

It is only through the grace and forgiveness of God and the great sacrifice of Christ that we are able to attain salvation.

If you are looking to say something to God, but have no idea, just find a place of silence and don’t say anything. Or better yet, tell him that you have no idea what’s going on in your life! Hand it over into his hands.

I’ll say a prayer for you! :slight_smile:


#4

I hope this doesn’t offend you or, God forbid, make you feel worse, but there’s a whole lot of legalism and even a little “magical” thinking (hold your mouth the right way, don’t step on a crack, etc.) in your rant. Maybe that’s just your personality or maybe it’s how you were raised to see God. Instead of focusing on the legalism, try taking a new look at the love of Jesus. A good spiritual director could recommend some books that would help you immerse yourself in His love. Without that, you can’t hope to stay out of trouble! His love is the starting point of everything and you need to get there and stay there for awhile. The second thing I would say is that you’re concentrating all your effort and all your thought on yourself rather than on Him. Somehow His love must become real to you, more real than your petty weaknesses, your sins, your inadequacies. Don’t beat yourself for the sad frustration you experience over your lack of perfection. Instead, let it help convince you that you can’t save yourself!


#5

Good news, Tabsie - you don’t have to be “perfectly” contrite to be forgiven. Imperfect contrition plus sacramental confession will do the job for you.

More good news - it doesn’t matter how you feel about it, as long as you keep doing the right thing. Relying on feelings to see how holy you are is totally wrong.

Take some of these worries to confession with you and you will get extra grace to deal with it as well as some advice and support from the priest.

You’re going to be fine.

Betsy


#6

tabsie,

Jesus said the road to life is Narrow and the way of destruction broad. So we know from these words, that we need to have focus, discipline and foritude Aided by Gods grace to receive our salvation.

How much time do you spend watching Tv? How much time do you spend studying? How much time do you spend working?

We should be praying more then anything else we do… That is why Jesus said Pray always, and St paul say pray without stopping.

I suggest to you the Jesus Prayer, Its short and simple and if you constantly repeat it , with full attention of the words and who your addressing, you will see a major difference.

So every Minute try saying …Lord Jesus Christ Son of God have Mercy on me a Sinner.

Go to Mass a few days a week, Fast One day a week, Read your bible every night. Pray the chaplet.

Its like working out or not working out. Its easy to be fat…Its easy to Sin to live a life without God, anybody can do that its so easy …yet pointless as you mentioned. But how many of us are fit athlete’s , or trained soliders, or ninja’s …you see Christians are the highest Soliders, the Highest ninjas…we are the highest of the Disciplines…and to fullfill this calling we need the Life of Jesus in us…and we need to be devoted to prayer.

Without Prayer you will go back to Sin because you wont have the life of Jesus in you, with prayer his life comes alive…so pray always …

You need to take your spiritual life more seriously then School , Work anything…you need to put God first…only then will you see the results you desire…Just like the fat kid wont lose weight until he gets with the program so our soul’s wont be transformed until with get with Gods program.


#7

You are not alone with all your fears and doubts. I too used to have times when I question everything. Years ago I had it really bad. I was a lapsed Catholic, barely hanging onto a thread of belief in God at all, deathly afraid of death and nothingness just as you mentioned. Hell and Purgatory was much more appealing than just disappearing. It is a terrifying thought that someday, life simply ends and then everything just stops.

BUT when you think about that, IF that were the case, you would not be aware of anything anyway. Still the idea that if you know you are about to die and the prospect of consciouness just disappear is very depressing and horrifying.

BUT we also know that this is not what happens. We know as Catholics that Jesus having lived, died, and rising from the dead, we will also rise again. At least we should know that this is what happens.

I would recommend having you read about the many saints who know and experienced the supernatural. There are saints who had glimpses of what happens after death, there are folks who knew Jesus or the other saints so personally that they performed many miracles. They know Jesus is real and not just some idea or myth.

As far as who gets to Heaven, we can only have faith that Jesus will keep His promises, If we love God above all else, if we are charitable to all our neighbors, we will not be condemned. Just remember that Jesus says, if we eat His Body and drink His Blood, we shall have life everlasting.

Pray, go to mass, and confession, lead a decent moral life, be charitable, and have faith that Jesus is who He says He is, and know that Jesus can and will help us overcome our sins. God does not want you to live in fear. Some doubt is normal, but don’t let it rule over your life.


#8

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