Faith

Jumping Through Hoops to Find God

I spent alot of time during and after my conversion jumping through hoops to be close to God. I read Christian books, recited rosaries, made weekly confessions, attended daily morning mass, etc. and it was so fruitful. So, so fruitful. It was a period of time where I really fell in love with God.

If you truly seek God, He will reveal Himself to you. God had revealed himself to me and it was awesome. I was in love. It was where the foundation for my faith was laid, but it wasn’t sustainable. There were diapers to change and babies to rock. The time for ALL GOD ALL THE TIME ran out–life was waiting.

Time passed and those same things that brought me peace and made me feel so very close to God lacked the vibration that once accompanied them. I was bored. I didn’t feel close to God. I was going through the motions. I kept pushing myself anyway. A rosary a day! No matter what! Rosary! I told myself it was the sinful part of me that was relying so much on feeling. Keep praying those rosaries. Keep on. Ignore feelings! Feelings are human and sinful. 

And then I just couldn’t any more.

I had to stop. And I had guilt when I stopped. And then (eventually) I learned something: like all good relationships, our relationship with Him changes. 

I don’t go to daily mass anymore. Dane wouldn’t allow that. I don’t pray a rosary every day because you know what I learned? My relationship with Him doesn’t depend on me! I was giving myself so much power and not trusting in Him at all. He loves me without the rosaries. He’s with me without them. My relationship doesn’t look the same today as it did a year ago, and I hope it won’t look the same a year from now. 

These days I do a bible reading and prayer every morning. I use a prayer journal to pray because I’m a writer and it helps to keep my mind from wandering, and my husband and I do couple prayer at night. We do family prayer and I make a habit to pray a Hail Mary when I have a judgmental thought (think:Wal Mart). I ask the Holy Spirit to guide me when I’m in a situation where I might be tempted to gossip (which is a problem for me). I ask for help when I feel myself losing my patience with the kids. 

So, here’s the difference, where before I made an effort to have ALL GOD ALL THE TIME, now I make an effort to live my life and leave an open door for Him. I try to make my life a prayer. Sometimes it’s a sloppy one or a quick one or a chaotic one, but He doesn’t mind. I ask for His help in the mundane. “Help me not to yell at Dane for being an insane person.”

I remind myself that I don’t have to jump through hoops to find Him. He’s with me– all day, everyday. Waiting for me. He’s with me in the laundry. He’s with me when I pass someone walking on the road who needs helps. He’s with me when the opportunity to bad mouth someone comes up. He’s with me. He’s meeting me day in and day out and I don’t have to jump to find Him. My life is a prayer and so is yours. Remember that. 

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