What I’m going to say doesn’t get said enough. But, as the title of this blog suggests, I do think more people need to hear it, so that at the very least, it might bring them some comfort to know they’re not alone, so here it is:
Some days I wake up and question everything I believe in.
Some days I wake up and seriously, deeply doubt the existence of God.
Some days I wake up angry and frustrated at the Church’s teaching, the very teaching I try and support through this blog.
Some days I wake up and I seriously consider abandoning all of it because I just can’t see the point anymore.
I have a lot of friends who are atheist or agnostic, and many of them have at some point told me that they wish they could believe in God. They wish they had the capacity for faith. They wish they had something like religion that they could to turn to with all of life’s toughest questions and problems. And I always tell them that it’s not as easy as they might think.
Faith is not a privilege. It is a constant struggle. At least it is for some of us. I know it is for me.
There are days when my heart is so full joy that I think it might burst. There are days when I couldn’t be more sure that God is walking side by side with me through life. And then there are days where I feel like I call out to God, and my prayers just echo in the nothing.
And I think too many of us are afraid to admit that we feel that way sometimes. I think too many of us feel guilty when we struggle. And I think there aren’t enough writers and leaders in the Catholic Faith that are open and honest about feeling this way, and we need them to be.
We need it because that guilt will eat us from the inside out. We need to know that there are others who struggle the same way, who struggle with the deep, terrifying force of doubt.
And so to anyone else who has ever dealt with this, let me be the one to tell you that you are not alone. As I’ve already said, I doubt. I fear. I’m not always 100% confident in my faith. But I also want to remind you that each of us has a cross to bear in our walk with God, and we can’t give up.
When you feel that pain of doubt and despair, you have to push through. When you lean on God and you don’t feel like He’s responding, you have to lean harder. When you don’t feel like going to Mass, you have to go anyway, because the grace is there, even if you can’t always feel it. The point is to try. To keep putting one foot in front of the other. To keep moving forward.
I could sit here and fill your head with talk about all the wondrous glory of the sacraments, the beauty of Mass, the salvation of mankind, the love of God, etc, etc, etc.
But sometimes that’s not what we need to hear. Sometimes in our darkest moments, we need someone to look at us and say, “Me too. Now let’s keep moving.”