Distant from the Deity


I didn’t sleep very well last night, lots to think about, from the fleeting nature of life to whether I can take my own pillow to the hospital.

 

Obviously God has entered my thoughts and discussions the past few weeks but my inability to pray hasn’t suddenly changed. For a few years now I’ve felt disconnected from God, or, more accurately, my idea of God. I would explain it like this:

 

I spent my first eighteen years on Earth as a Roman Catholic. In fourth grade I wanted to be a priest. In seventh grade, I discovered girls, who didn’t discover me until after high school. I saw the world through Catholic eyes. I had the encouragement of a large family of devout German Catholics and five years of parochial school. I prayed to the Virgin, trusted the priests, went to confession and expected to wind up in Paraguay when I died. Make that Purgatory.

 

After high school I joined a Bible study and started reading the Good Book for the first time. I was given a Bible since, being an average Catholic family of the time, we didn’t have one in the house. While studying Mark, I had a born again experience on January 10, 1971. Everything changed immediately. My head was theologically spun around, altering my perspective. I now saw God and the world through Protestant eyes. Ideas that had controlled my life were suddenly replaced by a new paradigm, triggered by my personal encounter of God. I stopped going to mass and started attending a house church with six other people.

 

For most of the next thirty years I was in “full-time” Christian service. Everything in my life revolved around knowing God and making him known. Then a few years ago I experienced another paradigm shift, which I will describe elsewhere. It cast into shadows most of what I thought I knew about God and his ways in the world.

 

I went from being a Catholic, to a Protestant, to a ???. I have come to doubt much of what I’ve learned and taught about God, except that he exists. I have gone from feeling like part of the Bride of Christ to feeling like a widow. I can look back on wonderful times but the present seems sterile. I have gone from seeing constellations to just seeing stars.

 

(Read my page Stars and Constellations for a metaphorical explanation of how my vision has shifted.)

 

This is the spiritual condition in which this physical challenge now finds me. The one affects the other and I will try to describe how it all works out. I’m doing this for three reasons:

  • to help my own understanding;
  • to share with family and friends some insight into what I’m experiencing;
  • to encourage others who find themselves on similar spiritual or physical journeys.

 

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One thought on “Distant from the Deity

  1. After leaving my first post at “In the News,” I’ve been reading your blogs from the start. I can identify with where you’re at spiritually. I’ve been through a “dark night of the soul.” I wondered if God was even listening, and if he was, why wasn’t he answering my prayers. Since then, I’ve become closer to him, mainly through realizing how much he loves me and that he would never forsake me. I applaud you for being so honest about your experiences. Not too many people would admit that they don’t feel close to God, especially after being a pastor (my husband also used to be a pastor, but now we run a host home for developmentally disabled adults; I guess you can say it’s a different kind of ministry and “congregation”).

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