I'm finding it difficult to believe that "sin" exists


Everything that I do wrong is rooted in some psychological or emotional imperfection. I sense more and more that I lack the necessary self-control to prohibit myself from certain ingrained habits and psychosomatic responses. And I lose faith that grace exists to help me. The devil plays on these weaknesses, and sometimes I just feel helpless, even in prayer. It’s like a small bird whose wings are broken during a violent wind while taking shelter in the nest, thus it hits the ground hard everytime it tries to fly with its abnormal, crooked wings. I’d like God to be my wings, but I just don’t think He’s so interested - or He’s more interested in poking the broken bird with a stick, spurring it on along the ground, rather than picking it up. That’s unfair, though, and I can’t blame God. It is all my fault, but “my fault” is the product of a whole heap of mental barriers that have become a comfortable reality.

At least there’s Mercy.


God loves you more than anything. He’s crazy in love with you! His grace does abound. His love for you will never end. Yes, we all sin. We all have the propensity to sin and have imperfections that make it easier to sin. It’s part of our fallen nature.
Trust in God and know that His grace is always offered to you. I would suggest a good confession in which you honestly express what you have here. I’d bet your priest can give you far better advise than I can.
God knows we sin. He knows everything about us and loves us anyway. What he wants is for us to love Him to the best of our ability all of the time. When we mess up (and we ALL do) all He asks is that we are sorry and tell Him so, and promise to try harder in the future. He does give us the grace we need to avoid sin. It’s our own will that screws that up. We fall. The important thing is that we get back up again, brush ourselves off, get reconciled with God, and go at it again, hopefully getting at loving God in return more each time. If we don’t end up in Heaven with Him, it will only be because we refuse to go! God won’t take away our free will no matter how much He loves us and wants us to be with Him.
I will pray for you to have a great experience at confession and that you get good advise with more than I can offer… Peace!


Sin is moral evil. It causes suffering, which is physical evil. It comes from the devil, who is metaphysical evil. Evil begs evil. But one cannot blame the devil for one’s sins, because one has free-will.

Tell me, why do people get disgusted at murder? Or feel guilty after adultery? It is because people know the evil of murder and of adultery, though might not recognize it as sin. It is because of the Natural Moral Law, the law in the heart, which comes from God, who is Law and Lawgiver. He is the Giver of gifts and the Best of His gifts, being a Gift Himself, the Gift of gifts.


Ah, I think I see. You look at all the influences in your life and see so many negative ones that it becomes hard not to conclude that its those outside influences causing you to make bad choices. Thus you aren’t culpable and it isn’t sin. Right?

Just one problem. Who DOESN’T have tons of those negative influences? Nobody. We all do. So how can you explain a Mother Theresa, a Padre Pio, Maximillion Kolbe, Mother Angelica, etc?

There’s more going on in us than just our influences. And Grace doesn’t make us a puppet for God either. Both are subtle competitors for our choices, locked in a lifelong battle for our souls. Choose Grace! And start small. That’s how all the above got big.


If I didn’t think I was culpable then I wouldn’t feel remorse for the things I do. I just don’t have any legs is really all I’m saying.


I’m not following then. If you feel remorse, then you clearly recognize that you sinned. That puts you in Jesus’ favorite class of people.

Try Luke 18 (IIRC) when Jesus compares the Pharisee and the tax collector in the temple. That’s been on my mind lately for some reason…


Hey Epistemes, I was trying to get in touch with you earlier, and I wrote you a letter, but then I found you aren’t receiving PM’s anymore :(.


Welcome to the club! Physical, mental, and spiritual health are entwined like a rope. Work on all three at the same time. “Make use of this world’s goods that they may bring you lasting treasure in heaven.” However you choose to do that whether therapy, spiritual guidance, support of friends, community or all three-- grace will be in it because you have asked for it to be so. That is the Good News.


Hi there, I feel the same way sometimes: a despair that I can never be pleasing to God, that I can never have what it takes to be better, that everything is already ruined and nothing is going to make things change.

Up until now, it is only the Blessed Virgin that is able to console me. When I feel crippled by despair, I throw myself at the feet of the Blessed Virgin, and ask her to dispose of me however she wants. I no longer concern myself with my spiritual progress; I just let her take me wherever it may be.

When Mary guides me and teaches me, she still shows me my weaknesses but she does it in such a gentle way that I do not despair nor become crushed. I cannot explain this. I still see the terribleness of my state but there is a gentle and sustaining strength from her that picks me up and changes me.

When I feel extremely weak, tempted, and in turmoil, I simply call the name of “Mary” in my soul. She is the only one that has given me peace so far. She has never failed to do that for me.

Perhaps she will do the same for you. Have you tried to simply look at some pictures of Mary in your house? Or wear Her Miraculous Medal? Her pictures are very powerful. If you put them in places where you often are, her presence will be there. She will catch you by surprise sometimes. Please try it!

The prayer on the Miraculous Medal: **Mary conceived with sin, pray for us who have recourse to thee!


it is not God who treats you that way but satan and satan works through human beings… so we all need to get away from humans sometimes…

i like to take walks in nature where there are NO humans around to distract or disturb me… This is another way of being in “Church”… nature is God’s 1st Church in my opinion.

maybe that’s why so many people end up in Hell… they stay arond people all the time… doing this or that worldly activity and after awhile they start thinking that all that is … real…

spending time with Jesus in the Real Presence is another thing that will give you a more godly perspective… than you get being in the world… WAY… Jesus doesn’t care about the same things humans do…

i read this thing about how the demons like to keep pepole constantly busy… so as to keep them from thinking about what’s importnat… their salvation…


Dear Epistemes,

Original sin has left a certain disorder in man’s nature, warping his mind and disturbing the balance which should prevail between his will and his passions However although original sin was due to to the Devil’s treachery in the first place, his influence now is not restricted to these transmitted deficiencies; thus over and above inherited evils, he is still able to tempt men, including you and I, within such limits as God permits (the entire Book of Job is good exemplification of this). If anyone is doing any ‘poking’ you can be sure it is the Devil.

God has promised to supply us with His grace for these deficiencies. He said to St. Paul, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness” (2 Cor. 12: 9). What a reassuring text this is! Moreover the same Apostle tells us that “No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your strength, but with the temptation will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it” (1 Cor.10: 13). God does, of course, expect us to resist temptation, but He also expects us to ask for the necessary graces by prayer, indeed our dear Lord constantly urged such prayer as the Gospels inform us. If a man, therefore, is condemned for yeilding to the temptations of Satan, this is not because he could not resist them, but rather because he would not, or refused to ask God for the required help.

Although the doctrine of original sin can be verified from Sacred Scripture and Tradition, it cannot be proved by natural reason. Nevertheless the fact of original sin is evidenced by many signs; just look at the frightful moral aberrations of mankind and the many defections from belief in the True God (e.g. atheism), that, along with our TV and newspapers, is surely evidence enough? It has been well said that had there been no story of the Fall in Sacred Scripture we should have been compelled to invent something of the kind to account for human history.

Hope this will be of some help to you.

Warmest good wishes and prayers,


closed #12

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit www.catholic.com.