Looking for Hope in All the Wrong Places

Lately, I have been going through a brief period of spiritual darkness.  The once bright spark of hope and faith that I had within me seems to have grown dimmer in the past few days as I struggle through some hardships with my life.  I have learned that there is a certain kind of ebb and flow of faith throughout life, but every time there is an ebb, I worry.

And worry is one of the things that God tells us not to do.  Even during the Mass, the priest asks God to protect us from all anxiety.  And yet, I worry.  I worry that the flow won’t come back.  That perhaps God will abandon me.  I’m not the only one who worries about these things, I am sure.  I think that a lot of it has to do with the type of world we live in.  Our culture tells us that we have to earn everything we want.  I worry that perhaps I am not praying the right way, or reading the right things, or thinking the right thoughts.  I worry that I will lose the spark of faith that is inside of me.

I look to earn back my faith as if it is a prize awarded by God for good behavior.  I try to pray extra hard, or extra long, or with more fervor than you could imagine.  I do that until I am exhausted.  And do you know what happens?  Nothing.  Because faith and hope and love are gifts given to us freely by God.  We don’t have to earn them.  It’s a lesson that I am just beginning to learn.

Please share how you ride the ebb and flow of faith in your own life.  Others may find your words helpful in their life.

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4 thoughts on “Looking for Hope in All the Wrong Places”

  1. whenever I feel hopeless, i think of the story of St.Peter walking on the water to Jesus. But when Peter takes his eyes off Jesus and sees the storm around him, he becomes afraid and begins to sink. Jesus reaches out his hand and saves Peter from drowning. He says “You of little faith, why did you doubt”.: This story reminds us to stay focused on Jesus and to never be afraid of the storms around us but to just reach out for his saving hand.

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  2. A very touching post. It’s hard to have hope when times are tough, but it’s important to have hope even if it’s not easy because it helps us to be stronger. I try to find hope and assurance that God is looking out for me and my friends and family by praying every night and going to church on Sundays, as often as I can to keep my faith in Him alive.

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