Wednesday, November 19, 2014

5 Steps to Restore the Faith

Some of us may have come to the point where too many misfortunes were happening in our lives that we just decided to stop believing in God. In my case, my religiousness have started to waver when I was around third year college. All the aspects of my life just kept getting worse and I started to feel animosity towards God. I questioned Him about all the misfortunes I had and eventually, I began to doubt if there really was a God out there. So you see, it didn't just waver, my religiousness went down to 0. I stopped believing in God. I declared myself an Atheist and even had q&a sessions with my Atheist online friend to learn more about Atheism.

My religious past self used to believe that God won't give me problems that I can't bear and that He would always help me. I also believed that everything happens for a reason and behind every reason was Him. But the time came when all of these beliefs didn't make sense to me anymore. My thinking became more worldly.

But fortunately, I woke up from that state and decided that I'm going to believe again. I realized that not believing in God didn't improve my life and make me any happier. So how did I do it? First off let me tell you at this point that it's a long process, of course. Even up to now, I'm still not done. I'm still working on restoring my relationship with God. The following are the steps I came up with:

  1. Decide whether you're really going to stop believing in Him OR you are just mad at Him.
  2. If you feel that you're not happy with whatever your decision is, take a step back and look at everything, the whole situation. Then ask yourself, "Why am I not happy?". I
    n my case, I realized that I made the wrong move when I decided to quit Catholicism. I thought that doing that would finally help me feel better and happier. But dude was I wrong. Weeks turned into months and eventually, the truth came to me: I was just mad at Him. I was so mad that I convinced myself that He's not real, I denied His existence. I forced myself into Atheism thinking that that was the right thing for me to do given my circumstances. In answering the question above, you should be totally honest with yourself. It's better and more helpful than denying your feelings, questions, and thoughts. Once you find the answer, this question should come next, "What should I do to be happy?".
  3. Realizing my big mistake, I started praying to Him right away. I asked for forgiveness and explained to Him everything: all my thoughts, feelings, and worries (though He knows all of them already). I also suggest to try to always talk to Him even if it's not exactly a prayer, you can talk to Him even in random moments throughout the day; express your thoughts and concerns and ask for help. To be honest, I think it's just like trying to reconcile with a close friend you had a fight with.

  4. Go to Confession. I haven't done this yet because I'm still in the part where I'm trying to be comfortable with God again. But I will do it soon. This is advisable because once you do this, you would feel like you're a new person. This would help you leave your sins, guilt, and mistakes behind and start anew.

  5. Go to Mass. I believe that this should be done ONLY after going to confession, because that's the right way, isn't it?

So those are the steps that I took, have been taking, and will take as someone who wants to go back to God after spending a part of her life as a non-believer. Though I want to restore my faith as soon as possible, I believe that this kind of thing should not be rushed. If you try to rush it, you would feel that it's wrong and it would just make you feel worse. I hope those steps would be helpful to a Catholic who's having doubts about staying in the religion or not.

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