Thursday, March 8, 2012

A long absence is ended

September 2011 seems so very far away, it seems like a lifetime ago.  September does not seem like it was only five months ago.  Five months ago I was going to adoration every night, mass every day, confession every other week, spiritual direction every week, prayed the rosary two and three times a day, prayed every morning and every night and every chance I got, I thanked God every morning and every night, I was saying the divine office.  I was a badass Christian.  I was everything you should want to be.  I had no problems because I actually had faith that God could and would take care of me.  I had amazing spiritual experiences.  I had everything I could have ever wanted, ever desired and I realized that God's plan for me is truly greater than anything I could have ever dreamed of for myself.

Then I got back from the monastery.  The word "maybe" rang through my head, my heart and reverberated in my soul.  I felt as though God had rejected me.  I wondered if I had discerned God's will correctly.  I questioned myself, my actions, my motives, my feelings, my spirituality.  I wondered how God could reject me, how could He?  How could He not want me with my sisters?  Why would He?  I thought maybe my work in the secular world was not done, that I needed to work harder on my prayer life, my spiritual life, my interior life.  That I needed to be more Catholic, more feminine, more holy.  The truth is that the sisters had told me "maybe" and I had heard "you are never allowed back here ever".  I had not listened to what I was I told.  I was heartbroken over something that never really happened.

So I threw myself off the ship.  I stopped everything that I was doing.  I stopped praying (completely).  I stopped going to mass and confession.  I stopped allowing God's grace into my life and allowing Him to walk with me and to save me.  I went back to thinking that I could make myself worthy of His love knowing well that I can never be worthy of His love and grace and mercy.  Knowing the words we say every mass, "Lord, I am not worthy that you should enter under my roof, but only say the word and my soul shall be healed."  I thought it was my doing that I was not worthy of Him.  I have treated myself as a worthless child.

I have harmed myself.  I have given into the devil.  I have almost completely turned my back on Him.  I used sex and cutting and work as ways of avoiding God's call to me and as ways of avoiding His love, because the truth is I do not see myself as being worthy of His love because I could not and would not love myself for who I am the way I am.  I refuse to see myself as others see me, I refuse to see who I truly am in His radiant light.

After months of cutting, of burning (literally burning myself), of having sex with one night stands the pain finally became too much.  I realized, for a brief moment, that I needed help.  That the depression and the self-hatred I feel are not something I can overcome on my own.  So I reached out for help.

I reached out to someone who I know has a solid faith that I greatly respect.  I reached out and, hard as it was, was completely honest.  I told him everything.  I told him about the cutting and the burning.  I told him why I was doing it.  I told him about the one night stands.  I told him how I had purposefully and deliberately moved away from God.  I am slowly and painfully moving back to the path that God has set out for me.

We all make mistakes, we all lose faith, we all lose our way.  The path that God has set out for each and everyone of us is not easy.  God's path requires work, sacrifice, vulnerability and trust.  The path the devil tries to lead us down looks far easier.  The devil shows us a path that is lit about as well as a dressing room in a Walmart, but it still looks easier than the path God has set out.  The devil's path looks like fun and does not require that we have faith or that we sacrifice.  The devil's path is filled with fame, fortune, and self.  The devil's path will strip us of everything we have, everything we love and, in return, give us the illusion that we are better than everyone else.  God's path, on the other hand, is brightly lit and you can see every obstacle and hardship that you will have to go through.  His path is hard and requires that we sacrifice our individual wants, needs, and desires so that we may be of maximum service to His children and, more importantly to Him.  So we choose the easier path and follow the devil only to find that the devil has deceived us and that his path is nothing but pain.  So now what?  Do we continue down the devil's or path or do we turn back to God?  Our pride and the devil would tell us to continue down the path we were on, but God beckons us back and is standing there with open arms ready and waiting for us to come back.  Everyone makes mistakes and falls away or, in my case, runs away.  The important thing is that we turn back to God and run into His arms understanding that we are not worthy and that His path is hard, but His path will take us to places we never dreamed.

In Christ our life,

Thomas Catherine


  1. hi,
    prayers for you !! :-)

    Be bold and be strong for thy lord is with you.


  2. This is absolutely beautiful. God bless you, your words touched me deeply.

  3. Dear Thomas Catherine,

    Thanks for sharing this expereince. It is a witness for Christ here on earth. It is real! Always remember that Jesus loves you endlessly and unconditionaly! May I recommend the sacrament of confession, which is where Jesus personally embaces us with his soothing and healing graces. I am praying for you.

    Blessings and internal peace,
    Fr. Vincent Esprit FMI

  4. Nice article, thanks for the information.