Let’s say he loved the idea of God, he prayed with all his heart in the hope that there was a God, he read the bible, went to mass every sunday and lived a clean life.
When one is in a spiritual crisis such as this, it is best to talk to your pastor. Simple answers to complex problems cannot be found on the internet.
God knows our soul, no one here does. God’s judgment is both just and merciful. He knows our heart.
Doubts and spiritual dryness are not unique to you, although you might feel quite alone. Talk to your pastor.
I am not so sure we can choose to believe. But we can choose to love.
…ever heard of “just in case?”
…some people actually “believe” that if they “believe, just in case” it’s beneficial to them…
It’s like that hollowood’s spirituality where evil gets to “save” humanity 'cause God works with everyone no matter what… and, according to their warped and calloused views, there are no genuine Believers who strive for holiness from whom God can choose.
Ignorance of God is not the same as rejection of God; a person could live a Christian life (observe every virtue without recognizing Jesus in them) and his/her conduct can gain him/her Salvation. Yet, a person cannot pretend to follow Jesus without Believing in Jesus:
[FONT=“Garamond”][size=]21 ‘It is not those who say to me, “Lord, Lord”, who will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the person who does the will of my Father in heaven. 22 When the day*c] comes many will say to me, “Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, cast out demons in your name, work many miracles in your name?” 23 Then I shall tell them to their faces: I have never known you; away from me, you evil men!’ 24 ‘Therefore, everyone who listens to these words of mine and acts on them will be like a sensible man who built his house on rock. 25 Rain came down, floods rose, gales blew and hurled themselves against that house, and it did not fall: it was founded on rock. 26 But everyone who listens to these words of mine and does not act on them will be like a stupid man who built his house on sand. 27 Rain came down, floods rose, gales blew and struck that house, and it fell; and what a fall it had!’
(St. Matthew 7:21-27)
Pretending is never enough:
15 I know all about you: how you are neither cold nor hot. I wish you were one or the other, 16 but since you are neither, but only lukewarm, I will spit you out of my mouth. 17 You say to yourself, ‘I am rich, I have made a fortune, and have everything I want’, never realising that you are wretchedly and pitiably poor, and blind and naked too. 18 I warn you, buy from me the gold that has been tested in the fire to make you really rich, and white robes to clothe you and cover your shameful nakedness, and eye ointment to put on your eyes so that you are able to see. 19 I am the one who reproves and disciplines all those he loves:*d] so repent in real earnest. 20 Look, I am standing at the door, knocking. If one of you hears me calling and opens the door, I will come in to share his meal, side by side with him.
(Apocalypse [Revelation] 3:15-20)
St Mother Teresa.
I think there are a lot of us who are in that position. I have my doubts, but I act as if I believe, and I am willing to believe.
I continue attending Mass, praying, reading Scripture, etc., because of that willingness to believe. A favorite quote of mine keeps me in the pew, so to speak:
“If you remove your body from the truth, when you are ready, the truth is nowhere to be found. But if you continue to bring your body to the truth, then when you are ready the truth is waiting there for you.” Reverend Rollo M. Boas
…but you know that Jesus did not Call to understanding complacency and philosophical balancing of truth seeking, right?
Huh? I don’t understand what you mean, because I’m certainly not complacent. Don’t know what “philosophical balancing of truth seeking” is.
…perhaps I misunderstood your post; it seemed to me that you were intimating that you have doubts about the Faith (about Believing in Christ); that you believe that many are in such defined conditions/terms (going through the motion without actually Believing the Word of God and what Scriptures have Revealed about God: Faith in Jesus).
Complacency is a state where a body lies in rest… from my perspective that would mean someone who is a “Believer” or even a “non-Believer” and his/her stance is, ‘here I am show me/make me a Believer.’
…agnostics have come to make such “philosophical balancing of truth seeking;” they claim to not be able to Know God so they do not not Believe because there has not been enough “revelation”/“proof” to give them their required “knowledge” of God; while, simultaneously, claiming to be seeking earnestly for the Truth (God).
…the balance comes in having one foot right on “Faith” while keeping the other foot squared at “need proof.”
I think Bonnie is refering to something that many saints experience. It is possible to want to believe but to be uncertain about whether God really exists or not. To want to believe on an intellectual level and to struggle with that.
To the OP, keep praying and following the faith as if you believe but also seek answers until you are satisfied! At least that is what I am trying to do.
ETA I also like to try and bring things back to basics. The message of Jesus Christ is one i want to follow, regardless of anything else. I believe he walked the earth and i believe what he taught was good. Hope that helps.