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Thread: Dark Night of the Soul

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    tWebber
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    Dark Night of the Soul

    Hi All,

    It has been a while since I last posted here and I come back at a time of what I suspect is spiritual weakness.

    I have been in this place before. Last time, I basically read everything I could get my hands on which ultimately convinced me that Christianity was indeed true. I them proceeded to post here and other places where I would regularly engage atheists and skeptics. Their arguments never bothered me then, I am not sure what is going on now.

    About a week ago, I just had an uneasy feeling. I kept thinking...what if I am wrong? How can I really believe this stuff? This is too good to be true.

    I really don't know what started it....perhaps it was the beginning of a new year and I am turning 40.

    It sucks because my life could not be going any better. I am so thankful for the many blessings that have been bestowed on me and my family.

    To be honest, I really don't know why I am posting this. I figured maybe I should reach out to the people that helped shape my faith in the first place.

    I just have so many questions now. Questions that I thought I had dealt with or been answered.

    Anyway, thank any one who reads and responds to this. I would appreciate any advice that anyone may have.

    Best,

    E771

  2. #2
    Must...have...caffeine One Bad Pig's Avatar
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    Try reading Ecclesiastes.
    Enter the Church and wash away your sins. For here there is a hospital and not a court of law. Do not be ashamed to enter the Church; be ashamed when you sin, but not when you repent. St. John Chrysostom

    Veritas vos Liberabit<>< Learn Greek <>< Look here for an Orthodox Church in America<><Ancient Faith Radio

    I recommend you do not try too hard and ...research as little as possible. Such weighty things give me a headache. - Shunyadragon, Baha'i apologist

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    See, the Thing is... Cow Poke's Avatar
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    My best advice from personal experience is stop focusing so much on yourself, and employ that simple little mnemonic / acronym "JOY" - Jesus, Others, You....

    It sounds like you're attempting to get plenty of "input" (remember Johnny 5? ) but there needs to be outflow... somewhere you put your learning and "input" to use.

    In a field next to my former Church is what we used to call "scum pond" -- it lay in a low area, and had several inlets of water when it rained, but there was nowhere for the water to go, so it sat there and stagnated. Over time, it built up a layer of scum over it, and was just a black cesspool.

    I think our lives can become like that -- we keep "taking in" but we don't do so good "giving out". Be involved in actual ministry - teach a Bible study - volunteer in a soup kitchen - be the hands and feet of Jesus.

    And - people laugh at me when I say this - but read the Bible out loud. "Faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God". Seriously, when you read out loud, you're employing more of your brain and senses, and you'll get more from it.

    Be not hearers of the Word only, but be a doer.

    Would love to follow up on this.

    1 Tim 2:5 For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus.

  4. Amen Adrift, Thoughtful Monk amen'd this post.
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    Troll Magnet Sparko's Avatar
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    welcome back Element771

    I think everyone goes through periods of doubt. Besides talking to other Christians, I find that reading the bible helps. Just read the New Testament through from start to finish. I also like reading books like "The case for Christ" and "Mere Christianity" to help me refocus my faith. They go through the "arguments" showing that Christianity is not only reasonable but true. Finally I find comfort in just going out and contemplating Nature and how wonderful this universe and planet are and how it could not be an accident. No accident would be this perfect.

  6. Amen Adrift amen'd this post.
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    Troll Magnet Sparko's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cow Poke View Post
    My best advice from personal experience is stop focusing so much on yourself, and employ that simple little mnemonic / acronym "JOY" - Jesus, Others, You....

    It sounds like you're attempting to get plenty of "input" (remember Johnny 5? ) but there needs to be outflow... somewhere you put your learning and "input" to use.

    In a field next to my former Church is what we used to call "scum pond" -- it lay in a low area, and had several inlets of water when it rained, but there was nowhere for the water to go, so it sat there and stagnated. Over time, it built up a layer of scum over it, and was just a black cesspool.

    I think our lives can become like that -- we keep "taking in" but we don't do so good "giving out". Be involved in actual ministry - teach a Bible study - volunteer in a soup kitchen - be the hands and feet of Jesus.

    And - people laugh at me when I say this - but read the Bible out loud. "Faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God". Seriously, when you read out loud, you're employing more of your brain and senses, and you'll get more from it.

    Be not hearers of the Word only, but be a doer.

    Would love to follow up on this.
    Yes. I know when I volunteer at church or make it a point to help others, I find my faith strengthens. I myself haven't done much in this area lately and need to reconnect again.

  8. Amen Adrift amen'd this post.
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    See, the Thing is... Cow Poke's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sparko View Post
    Yes. I know when I volunteer at church or make it a point to help others, I find my faith strengthens. I myself haven't done much in this area lately and need to reconnect again.
    I think I've mentioned this before, but something I noticed 15 or 20 years ago was that the "liberal" churches seemed to be involved in all kinds of "social gospel" stuff, and the "conservative" churches were more focused on theology and inerrancy and stuff like that. It really woke me up that we could do both.

    So, I have always led churches where I serve to get involved in community stuff, and "heavy on the doing", not just hearing.

    1 Tim 2:5 For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus.

  10. Amen Thoughtful Monk amen'd this post.
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    Troll Magnet Sparko's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cow Poke View Post
    I think I've mentioned this before, but something I noticed 15 or 20 years ago was that the "liberal" churches seemed to be involved in all kinds of "social gospel" stuff, and the "conservative" churches were more focused on theology and inerrancy and stuff like that. It really woke me up that we could do both.

    So, I have always led churches where I serve to get involved in community stuff, and "heavy on the doing", not just hearing.
    Our church had a clinic day each year where they would get doctors, nurses and dentists to volunteer to do free medical clinics for people who could not afford it. At the same time they did food and clothing pantries. And in addition to all of the people running the clinics and pantries they had "advocates" and counselors that would meet each person as they came into the area and take them personally through all of the stations, and ask them if their was anything they could answer for them about Jesus or anything they would like to pray about. I used to be one of the advocates. The very first person I ever led to Christ was at one of those clinics. Then life happened (you know some of what I am talking about) , then I moved away from that church, and I was unable to do it any more. But I think I need to go find something like that again.

  12. Amen Cow Poke amen'd this post.
  13. #8
    tWebber
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    Quote Originally Posted by One Bad Pig View Post
    Try reading Ecclesiastes.
    will do thanks!

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    tWebber
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cow Poke View Post
    My best advice from personal experience is stop focusing so much on yourself, and employ that simple little mnemonic / acronym "JOY" - Jesus, Others, You....

    It sounds like you're attempting to get plenty of "input" (remember Johnny 5? ) but there needs to be outflow... somewhere you put your learning and "input" to use.

    In a field next to my former Church is what we used to call "scum pond" -- it lay in a low area, and had several inlets of water when it rained, but there was nowhere for the water to go, so it sat there and stagnated. Over time, it built up a layer of scum over it, and was just a black cesspool.

    I think our lives can become like that -- we keep "taking in" but we don't do so good "giving out". Be involved in actual ministry - teach a Bible study - volunteer in a soup kitchen - be the hands and feet of Jesus.

    And - people laugh at me when I say this - but read the Bible out loud. "Faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God". Seriously, when you read out loud, you're employing more of your brain and senses, and you'll get more from it.

    Be not hearers of the Word only, but be a doer.

    Would love to follow up on this.
    I am an elder at our current Church and try to do as much as I can.

    Perhaps you are right though. I have always been good at figuring stuff out from a head perspective, but I have to admit that I have trouble with the heart perspective.

    I will try reading out loud to help, I have done this with drafts of manuscripts and it does help to hear it.

  15. Amen Adrift amen'd this post.
  16. #10
    tWebber
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sparko View Post
    welcome back Element771

    I think everyone goes through periods of doubt. Besides talking to other Christians, I find that reading the bible helps. Just read the New Testament through from start to finish. I also like reading books like "The case for Christ" and "Mere Christianity" to help me refocus my faith. They go through the "arguments" showing that Christianity is not only reasonable but true. Finally I find comfort in just going out and contemplating Nature and how wonderful this universe and planet are and how it could not be an accident. No accident would be this perfect.
    Thanks Sparko.

    I have an audio version of Mere Christianity that I play ofter while working. I started reading the NT already and will continue.

  17. Amen Sparko, Adrift amen'd this post.

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