Monday, May 14, 2012

My Life is a Mess: How Can God Love Me?

My Life is a Mess

I have done 
some terrible things.
I feel like a total failure.
I cannot seem to finish anything.
Even school.
Drugs, alcohol, and sex have been my companions along the way and I thought they gave me pleasure.
Instead they gave me illness.
I lost my license.
My partner abuses me and doesn't work.
I ended a pregnancy and this troubles me most. I feel like there is a dark finger of judgment pointed at me.
I still do lots of things I am ashamed of.
I work in a sleazy joint.
My mother and father have stood by me and I know I am a disappointment.
I have considered ending it all.
Anything I know of God and Church is Clear about where I'm headed.

This is the picture I have in mind when I think of the Church

This fellow accuses you
I don't

I Love You
I am not that Picture
Look at Me
This is my Picture
I am Compassion

I know how you feel. When I lived here on earth, I liked to eat with Tax Collectors and Sinners. The Holy People pointed the dark finger of judgment against me too.
Here's a quick story

The Calling of Matthew Matthew 9:11ff

 As Jesus was walking along, he saw a man called Matthew sitting at the tax booth; and he said to him, ‘Follow me.’ And he got up and followed him.
 And as he sat at dinner in the house, many tax-collectors and sinners came and were sitting with him and his disciples. When the Pharisees saw this, they said to his disciples, ‘Why does your teacher eat with tax-collectors and sinners?’ But when he heard this, he said, ‘Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick. Go and learn what this means, “I desire mercy, not sacrifice.” For I have come to call not the righteous but sinners.’

Let me be clear about this
I love you!
I mean I really do

Here's another example of what I mean. There was a day when they hauled up this woman in front of me who had been caught in the "very act of adultery". They wanted to stone her to death just the way the Law of Moses required. I had three problems with that. 
     First. Where was the guy? If she had been caught in the "very act", then he must have been there too. I know a set up when I see one. 
     Second they were trying to catch ME teaching something contrary to the LAW...and they were using you to justify the judgment.
     Third, the one who is without sin, let him/her cast the first stone.
By the way, do you know what I wrote in the sand? The names of those folks in the town who had paid her for her services, beginning with the elders. (the nice respectable religious folks...see the first picture above)

Here read the story for yourself.

John 8

Early in the morning he came again to the temple. All the people came to him and he sat down and began to teach them. The scribes and the Pharisees brought a woman who had been caught in adultery; and making her stand before all of them, they said to him, ‘Teacher, this woman was caught in the very act of committing adultery. Now in the law Moses commanded us to stone such women. Now what do you say?’ They said this to test him, so that they might have some charge to bring against him. Jesus bent down and wrote with his finger on the ground. When they kept on questioning him, he straightened up and said to them, ‘Let anyone among you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her.’ And once again he bent down and wrote on the ground. When they heard it, they went away, one by one, beginning with the elders; and Jesus was left alone with the woman standing before him. Jesus straightened up and said to her, ‘Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?’ She said, ‘No one, sir.’ And Jesus said, ‘Neither do I condemn you. Go your way, and from now on do not sin again.’

Listen to me carefully.
I love you very much.
You are of infinite value to me.
Even this fellow.
A tax collector.
Poor Matthew, he thought it was money that mattered.
I showed him a better way.
The way of love, forgiveness, and reconciliation.

I love you very much
I love you so much I would give my life for you.
Did you ever see a picture like this before?
It is a picture of my love for you.

One last thing.
I did all this so that you may have life.
That my joy may be in you.
That your joy may be complete.
I have come to bring you new life.
Life that will never end.
Say this to yourself every day 
Say it often
"I am the one Jesus loves"
It may sound funny at first.
But you will get used to it.
Salvation and Forgiveness came first
Then came Repentance and a Whole New Life.

I hope you feel better.
And don't forget.
I love you very much.

"I am the one Jesus loves"


Anonymous said...

I don't deserve his forgiveness

Fr. Paul said...

Right you are! None of us "deserves" God's forgiveness. That is the whole point of our faith. Think of the women and men Jesus sought out, the woman "caught" in adultery, the woman at the well (who had 7 husbands), the liars and cheats, the prisoners, and hopeless criminals...these are the people Jesus came to save. The well have no need of a doctor, Jesus said, but those who are sick. The truth is we are all "sin sick". And some of us cannot forgive ourselves. In one case I know a homeless woman who had had an abortion. It took her a long, long time, but not only did she need to accept God's forgiveness, but she could not forgive herself, until she realized that the baby forgave her too. Jesus believes you are worth salvaging. He believes you are worth all the world to him. And I do too! God bless you. God loves you, and so do I. Fr. Paul

Fr. Paul said...

One more thing, please keep repeating this over and over until you realize it is God speaking to you directly.
"I am the one Jesus love"

Anonymous said...

I have so disappointed my family. I have them down. Many days and nights I feel I cannot go on. I am such a failure. Please pray for me.

Anonymous said...

I have so let my family down. I have so disappointed them. Many days and nights I feel I can't go on. Please pray for me.

"Fr. Paul" Bresnahan said...

Never forget that within each of us there is a fundamental impulse to love, to reach beyond, to reach out. You will be amazed that with any amount of reaching out you will be embraced with the surprise of love, especially at this time of year. Swallow your pride. Tell them you love them. Let me know what happens. You are and always have been forgiven. There is nothing you can do that will disappoint God. And your family wants you to begin now. Redemption is no further away that a recognition that you are loved!