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BarbaraTherese

Mental Illness & Bipolar Disorder

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BarbaraTherese

I have just learnt something about bipolar I have never heard about ever before.  What I call "normal" stages between episodes, is actually intrinsic to bipolar at times and is an actual mood.  It is called Euthymic Mood, Definition: https://www.healthline.com/health/euthymic#1  (not lengthy nor at all complex) This means something I have never understood before 52 weeks x7 days x 24 hrs daily, I suffer bipolar disorder whereas I thought I had episodes with normality in between.  Sorry guys, you have a daily every single hour of every single day sufferer of bipolar in me.:buddies:  I am so very grateful for you all here on Phatmass over many years now.

A scientific paper and more complex on bipolar and euthymic mood is here https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6074289/ (more complex in places and a much longer read)

I think I am starting to understand something new about bipolar and something very helpful to me.

A prayer would be appreciated.  I have put a few irons in the fire not only in my interests.  It will be an unfolding situation, a Journey within the Journey - and the ball is now in their court.  Thank you very much.

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penitent60

Howdy BarbaraTherese, been living a different reality for much of my life too and until recently took tons of drugs to fit in with general idea of weird reality. Hope you are in a place where you are able to deal with the more colourful aspects of your life. I dont have bipolar, just DID which is mostly resolved except for the yearning to return there even though it wasn't very good. I just deal with anxiety and depression

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BarbaraTherese
On 9/30/2019 at 7:23 AM, penitent60 said:

Howdy BarbaraTherese, been living a different reality for much of my life too and until recently took tons of drugs to fit in with general idea of weird reality. Hope you are in a place where you are able to deal with the more colourful aspects of your life. I dont have bipolar, just DID which is mostly resolved except for the yearning to return there even though it wasn't very good. I just deal with anxiety and depression

Hi there, Penitent60

It is not unusual apparently for a person to have an episode of bipolar and never again.  I am very glad to read that your episodes are past tense.  A huge blessing for you.  What a great blessing you have been able to abandon drugs, the side effects can be nasty, huh?  My psychiatrist tried to ween me off drugs, but the withdrawls got pretty nasty and I called a stop to the experiment.

 I experience bipolar as insidious and vicious and it scares me silly for the potential for an episode to take one's normal life apart ,as well as even long established relationships - some relationships I have never been able to re-establish.

I have heard too that some sufferers of bipolar do miss the highs of the illness - I cannot even imagine that.  My brand of bipolar (and there are quite a few) scares me out of cotton pickin wits.

I also suffer with anxiety and at times depression too.  I can have too a bipolar high with undertones of the bipolar depression.:blink:Apparently both anxiety and depression are connected to bipolar disorder.  But I have had only one real bipolar depression in my life ;- it was cruel. In the overall, little really is understood about mental illness as a conclusive agreement.  I have been reading  not only about Euthymic Mood stage in bipolar (what I used to call the normal stage), but also about the bipolar gene in blood related families and the very positive aspect and effect of the gene.

Both Euthymic Mood and research on the bipolar gene are relatively new 'discoveries' and while agreements are not conclusive, it seems that the conclusions of science could be correct.

On 9/30/2019 at 7:23 AM, penitent60 said:

Hope you are in a place where you are able to deal with the more colourful aspects of your life.

What a great way to put it.  Phatmass is the place where I can feel supported, encouraged and accepted as I am.

Again, I felt happiness to read that your bipolar episodes are past tense.  Well done!  What a huge blessing for you!

Regards P60....oh and a big welcome to Phatmass :)  ......Barb

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penitent60

I worry endlessly over sin and my inability to pray. I fear a wrathful God,

 

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BarbaraTherese

Hi all........The episode is continuing but it is much milder.  Then a bit of stress last night and this morning and it is has gained momentum.  With my brand of bipolar anyway, stress I would normally take in my stride without a blink (mole hill becomes a mountain) becomes a mountain to me.  And to me in an episode frame of mind as now, it really is a mountain. This is something those in a so called 'normal' mentality cannot understand at all.  It is not an imaginary mountain to me, it really is a mountain in an episode frame of mind and needs to be treated as such.  Even some mental health professionals do not get it at all and therefore making the stress for the sufferer far worse.  It seems to the sufferer that their stress inducing problem is being dismissed. From that can follow or reinforce low self esteem and self confidence.  The sufferer can then feel alone lacking the support from the support source and therefore- depressed.  Perhaps there are other flow-ons too.

Every single person is absolutely unique.  

Onwards with The Lord of The Dance :) 

____________________

 

I danced in the morning when the world was begun,
And I danced in the moon and the stars and the sun,
And I came down from heaven and I danced on the earth:
At Bethlehem I had my birth.

Dance, then, wherever you may be,
I am the Lord of the dance, said he,
And I'll lead you all, wherever you may be,
And I'll lead you all in the dance, said he.

I danced for the scribe and the Pharisee,
But they would not dance and they wouldn't follow me;
I danced for the fishermen, for James and John;
They came with me and the dance went on:

Dance, then, wherever you may be,
I am the Lord of the dance, said he,
And I'll lead you all, wherever you may be,
And I'll lead you all in the dance, said he.

I danced on the Sabbath and I cured the lame:
The holy people said it was a shame.
They whipped and they stripped and they hung me on high,
And they left me there on a cross to die:

Dance, then, wherever you may be,
I am the Lord of the dance, said he,
And I'll lead you all, wherever you may be,
And I'll lead you all in the dance, said he.

I danced on a Friday when the sky turned black;
It's hard to dance with the devil on your back.
They buried my body and they thought I'd gone;
But I am the dance, and I still go on:

Dance, then, wherever you may be,
I am the Lord of the dance, said he,
And I'll lead you all, wherever you may be,
And I'll lead you all in the dance, said he.

They cut me down and I leapt up high;
I am the life that'll never, never die.
I'll live in you if you'll live in me:
I am the Lord of the dance, said he.

Dance, then, wherever you may be,
I am the Lord of the dance, said he,
And I'll lead you all, wherever you may be,
And I'll lead you all in the dance, said he.

Hymn sung with music

 

 

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BarbaraTherese
6 hours ago, penitent60 said:

I worry endlessly over sin and my inability to pray. I fear a wrathful God,

 

Hi again penitent60   

I think you are probably suffering from scruples - and many of our saints did too, so nothing to be ashamed of or worried about.  However, scruples are a cause of terrible and most extreme mental anguish.  I suffered scruples for a number of years.

When I go to Confession (I suffer bipolar disorder) I first tell Father two things, if he does not know me.  "Father, I suffer bipolar disorder and also I have made private vows"  That makes it easier for Father to advise me, he knows where I am coming from and sort of who I am.  Things he needs to take into consideration in giving me advice.  Confession is also the place for spiritual direction, but most often it has to be very brief indeed.

Anyway, I suggest that you go to Confession and tell Father that you think you might be suffering scruples after that, all you need to say is what you have posted above- or even much better, make an appointment to see Father, which gives Father more time to advise you.  

I will come back to your post, penitent60, and I hope later today.  I am having a bit of difficult time myself just now.  

God bless you and grant you His Peace.........Barb

Edited by BarbaraTherese

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BarbaraTherese

The other thing I would add at this time, it would be impossible for a sufferer of scruples to commit serious sin for two main reasons.

They are not thinking straight and you have to be this in order to commit serious sin.

Scruples are not sinful at all.  Scruples are a spiritual problem.  God sometimes uses scruples in the purifying process which God does do with every soul in the state of Grace.  He will purify by many means, not only scruples which really is severe suffering.  What Jesus said was (paraphrasing) And every tree that bears good fruit, I will prune (or purify) John Ch15 that is, God will make the person even a better person through suffering of some kind and degree.  Of course, to make a person better, God is not limited to using suffering.  With St Paul, as one example, Paul is knocked off his horse and hears Jesus speak to him.

I think it was St Ignatius who was ill in bed and read the lives of the saints and was totally converted i.e. made a much better person.

However, I think that which God most often uses with most all of us is some kind of suffering.  It does not mean at all that those that are made better by some happy event, are any better than the ones made better through suffering.  

I do hope I am making sense with you, penitent60 - if I am not, please stay in this thread posting and I will do my very best to answer you ...........Barb :) 

 

I am still coming back to your post later, penitent60.  I will be confining that reply to the actual problems you state in your post "I worry endlessly over sin and my inability to pray. I fear a wrathful God,"

God bless and my regards........Barb :) 

 

Edited by BarbaraTherese

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BarbaraTherese
10 hours ago, penitent60 said:

I worry endlessly over sin and my inability to pray. I fear a wrathful God,

 

Thinking about your post above now and then - and something sort of hit me.  It is very important indeed that you speak with a priest first.  If Father then advises you to seek some sort of counselling or similar, you must do so.  But not unless a priest advises you to do so.

Also it is essential to pray.  God is NOT wrathful.  God has the heart of the most Loving of Fathers, the very best.  Just ask Him to help you now and then.  All you really need to say to Him is  "Father, please help me".  Of course you can pray longer if you feel like doing so and in any way you might choose.

I will still be coming back to your post to respond to your concerns directly.  I am not only in a bipolar episode myself, I have had a number of phone calls today which I had to answer.

God bless and my regards.....catch up with you later penitent60....Barb :) 

 

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BarbaraTherese
19 hours ago, penitent60 said:

I worry endlessly over sin and my inability to pray. I fear a wrathful God,

 

Hi penitent60 again........

As I posted before, your best move is Father in Confession or to make an appointment with him, which is even better because it gives Father more time.

Quote

I worry endlessly over sin

The only human beings ever free from sin is Jesus and His mother.  We all sin every single day without fail.  First Letter of St John, Chapter 1: If we say, "We are without sin," we deceive ourselves, 3 and the truth is not in us. If we acknowledge our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive our sins and cleanse us from every wrongdoing.If we say, "We have not sinned," we make him a liar, and his word is not in us."

Quote

and my inability to pray.

Many of our saints had the above problem and problem is all it is.  It is not sinful because we did not choose deliberately not to pray.  It has just happened as it were without our help at all.  Also we do not know how to overcome it and would if we could.

Absolutely no sin, Penitent!

What do you mean by "to pray".  What is the praying you cannot do?  Praying has almost endless forms. St Therese of Lisieux said that (paraphrasing) prayer is a brief and loving glance towards Heaven.  

Quote

I fear a wrathful God,

The only people who really should be afraid of God's Wrath are those that die quite deliberately and with no remorse at all in mortal sin.  And only God can judge those who do from those who don't.

Where our own soul is concerned, however, we are in a better position to assess our own state of soul - we are not in a position to judge the state of soul of others.  Judge means to convict as guilty and pass sentence.   We can have what is known as "moral assurance" we are Heaven bound.  Moral assurance is when we really feel honestly that we are not in a state of mortal sin.  We cannot however state unequivocally that we are without fail at this moment Heaven bound and beyond any doubt Heaven bound.  That unknowing and reliance of God for salvation not only keeps us with a correct attitude - it helps to keep us in our rightful place before God i.e. humble before Our God - humble in the rear of the church as it were with head bowed praying "Lord have Mercy, for I am a sinful person" (Parable of the publican and the sinner)

It is a difficult question for me to answer.

If you have any problems with anything whatsoever in this thread, please post again.

God bless and my regards........Barb

____________

"reliance of God" should read "reliance on God".

Parable of Publican and Sinner (in Vatican Version called the Pharisee and Tax Collector).

Quote

 

Luke Chapter 18 LOCATED HERE - Vatican Website

"He then addressed this parable to those who were convinced of their own righteousness and despised everyone else.

"Two people went up to the temple area to pray; one was a Pharisee and the other was a tax collector.

The Pharisee took up his position and spoke this prayer to himself, 'O God, I thank you that I am not like the rest of humanity - greedy, dishonest, adulterous - or even like this tax collector.

I fast twice a week, and I pay tithes on my whole income.'

But the tax collector stood off at a distance and would not even raise his eyes to heaven but beat his breast and prayed, 'O God, be merciful to me a sinner.'

I tell you, the latter (tax collector) went home justified, not the former (Pharisee); for everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, and the one who humbles himself will be exalted."


 

 

Edited by BarbaraTherese

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penitent60

Thank you Barbara Therese for your responses. I think I knew that but wanted reassurance about sin and stuff.The bit about Therese of Lisieux was especially reassuring, as I always get the feeling if I cannot say a daily rosary its all over ,I cannot think straight at present but I do pray in a non verbal sort of way.

 

Edited by penitent60
additions and subtractions

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BarbaraTherese
5 hours ago, penitent60 said:

Thank you Barbara Therese for your responses. I think I knew that but wanted reassurance about sin and stuff.The bit about Therese of Lisieux was especially reassuring, as I always get the feeling if I cannot say a daily rosary its all over ,I cannot think straight at present but I do pray in a non verbal sort of way.

 

Thank you very much for the above reply, I was a bit concerned about you.  I know how cruel scruples and/or interior suffering can be. It was really a consolation to me to read you wanted reassurance and confirmation of your own thinking.

I went through a passage of not being able to pray The Rosary and my spiritual director at the time, priest and religious, theologian, gave me very reassuring advice  He lived in our Seminary and lectured in theology. He was a Vincentian Priest.  He told me not to be concerned about being unable to pray The Rosary, but simply to hold it in my hand now and then. He didn't even say to pray.  Rather, he said that simply holding one's Rosary in times of difficulty and/or unable to pray, is a prayer.

Rather, indeed, than all over - it just might be a new way is beginning.  I cannot think straight at the moment myself, going through a nasty bipolar episode.  Phatmass is such a blessing for me, a real Gift from Jesus - I have the feeling I am talking to someone which on Phatmass indeed I am doing.  I can stop and start typing whenever and pause to gather my thoughts.  I can read the post over before posting to make sure I am hopefully making some sort of sense.

Praying in a non verbal way, is an excellent way to pray.  Just hold your Rosary and glance lovingly 'towards Heaven' ....... and ok to do that quite literally.  Or even, just hold your Rosary lovingly, desperately - or even in quite coldness of heart and mind.

When we feel we are going backwards in our spiritual life and it is "all over" as you wrote.  It very often means only that our normal way of praying no longer works for us and Jesus is calling us to what is a higher way of praying.  But it can feel that I am not as good as I was and the higher way of prayer feels like the lowest way of prayer or not prayer at all....which it most definitely is not.  The transition from one way of praying to a newer and higher manner of prayer can be difficult and even painful.  We have lost the known and the comfortable and secure to transition to something different totally quite weird and foreign to oneself......because Jesus is calling us there and The Holy Spirit is nudging us along the difficult way and to bring glory to The Father as well as to bring us closer to Him.  Whatever we do out of Love for God brings glory to Him.  How on earth, for goodness sake, could I bring glory to God by picking up litter on the street for Love of Him for an example.  It is a mystery, but it does.  Whatever we might do for love of God brings Glory to The Father.

If I should do something really big and difficult for love of God, not at all unusual and quite common to have feelings of spiritual pride and delight in oneself.  If I keep myself always humble, the likelihood of spiritual pride lessens quite a bit.  Of course, some are called by Jesus to do something really big and difficult - because of the above about spiritual pride and self love, one should never ever do the big and difficult without consulting a priest and/or spiritual director and being obedient to their advice.

St Therese is my delight and my Confirmation Patron.  Her autobiography is a great read, but then again some find it is not a great read at all.  But there is another rather small book "The Love that Keeps Us Sane".  It is a wonderful read to understand the Little Way of St Therese. I am linking to both below:

Autobiography of a Soul (i.e St Therese).  It is also available on Kindle: AVAILABLE HERE FROM AMAZON

The Love that Keeps Us Sane (Living The Little Way of St Therese) also on Kindle: AVAILABLE HERE FROM AMAZON

Edited by BarbaraTherese

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BarbaraTherese

I do think that those who read the autobiography of St Therese especially ..... or any other book about her and/or the Little Way are/will be blest by Jesus - and St Therese will always pray for that person.  One may not be aware of being blest at first, but somewhere along the journey one will realise that they have been blest and through St Therese praying for them, insofar of course as they remain hoping and trying to Love and Serve God.  I have been off the rails plenty of times and know it was the prayers of St Therese that brought me back to the straight and narrow road, The Little Way of St Therese.  For one reason or another, I bet there are endless conversions of all kinds through her prayers - mine among them.

I have told St Therese that a rose from her would be wonderful which many seems to receive.  In all the years I have tried to be a servant of God and tried to love Him.........tried to follow The Little Way and praying to St Therese for her prayers for me - I have never ever received a rose or anything like it.  However, I am very conscious that I have been blest by Jesus because of St Therese and that she prays for me always as I journey in my forward, backward, sideways etc etc dance with The Lord of The Dance..  It is a quite vivid consciousness and for me, the best of all even than receiving a rose.

Another hymn I really love about leaving the familiar and transitioning to the unknown is The Galilee Song - I hope it is ok with you to dedicate it to you, Penitent60.  Printed lyrics are below the video.

God's richest blessings on your journey...........warm regards...........Barb

Galilee Song

Deep within my heart, I feel voices whispering to me.
Words that I can't understand; meanings I must clearly hear!
Calling me to follow close, lest I leave myself behind!
Calling me to walk into evening shadows one more time!

So I leave my boats behind!
Leave them on familiar shores!
Set my heart upon the deep!
Follow you again, my Lord!


In my memories, I know how you send familiar rains
Falling gently on my days, dancing patterns on my pain!
And I need to learn once more in the fortress of my mind,
To believe in falling rain as I travel deserts dry!

So I leave my boats behind!
Leave them on familiar shores!
Set my heart upon the deep!
Follow you again, my Lord!


As I gaze into the night down the future of my years,
I'm not sure I want to walk past horizons that I know!
And I need to learn once more like a stirring deep within,
Restless, 'til I live again beyond the fears that close me in!

So I leave my boats behind!
Leave them on familiar shores!
Set my heart upon the deep!
Follow you again, my Lord!

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BarbaraTherese

About going off the rails.  Everytime one sins, either venial or mortal one is "off the rails" somewhat as I call it.  Consistent venial sin and most especially when it becomes habitual as venial sin can become if not trying to avoid even sinning venially is off that road Jesus asks we take "Be ye Perfect, therefore as your Heavenly Father is perfect" and therefore Jesus has spelt out what perfection actually is for us: 

Quote

 

 Matthew Ch5 - Vatican website Bible - http://www.vatican.va/archive/ENG0839/__PVE.HTM

"You have heard that it was said, 'You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.'

But I say to you, love your enemies, and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be children of your heavenly Father, for he makes his sun rise on the bad and the good, and causes rain to fall on the just and the unjust.

For if you love those who love you, what recompense will you have? Do not the tax collectors 28 do the same?

And if you greet your brothers only, what is unusual about that? Do not the pagans do the same? 29

So be perfect, 30 just as your heavenly Father is perfect.

 

The above is a tall task indeed, to love both friends and loved ones equally as our enemies.  Honestly, I will go outside and eat a snail if anyone claims to be able to love all without exemption, no exemptions whatsoever.  To love enemies exactly the same as they love their loved ones.  We are fallible, weak and imperfect creatures. And God loves every person not despite the previous failings, but because of them.  This will become clear, I am sure, when I quote further down from a Carmelite document on St Therese and her Little Way.

Quote

 

http://www.catholicapologetics.info/morality/general/venial.htm  

........."...........Nevertheless, venial sin does constitute a true offence against God, an effective disobedience of His law, and an act of ingratitude for His great benefits. On the one hand there is the will of God and His glory; on the other, our own desires and selfishness. In the case of venial sin, we in effect choose the latter.

It is true that we should not prefer them if we knew that they would separate us radically from God (and in this we have the distinction between venial and mortal sin, because the latter consists in our turning away from God completely), but It is certain that the lack of respect toward God is of itself very great even in the case of venial sin. St. Teresa says in this regard:

"From any sin, however small, committed with full knowledge, may God deliver us, especially since we are sinning against so great a Sovereign and realize that He is watching us. That seems to me to be a sin of malice aforethought; it is as though one were to say: "Lord, although this displeases Thee, I shall do it. I know that Thou seest it and I know that Thou wouldst not have me do it; but although I understand this, I would rather follow my own whim and desire than Thy will." If we commit a sin in this way, however slight, it seems to me that our offense is not small but very, very great."...................

 

I wanted to quote further, but it is a long document.  Long, but an important read.  What I am going to do is turn to St Therese of Lisieux of The Little Way fame:

Quote

 

https://www.thedivinemercy.org/articles/divine-mercy-autobiography-st-therese "On a certain occasion during her life in Carmel, St. Therese was asked (my comment: probably novices when she was novice mistress): "Tell us what we must do to be as little children. What do you mean by keeping little?" She replied: "When we keep little we recognize our own nothingness, and expect everything from God just as a little child expects everything from its father. Nothing will worry us." In those words she reveals to us the foundation of her confidence. By looking at her heavenly Father's love for her, she learns a secret which is hidden from the wise and prudent and revealed only to little ones, namely that whereas, in heaven, the love of God goes out to those who are most like himself-the saints, Our Lady, the only-begotten Son, on earth, His love goes out to those who are farthest off-the weak, the outcast, the sinful. In other words, the love revealed to St. Therese in the Person of Our Lord was a merciful love, and it is as the "Merciful Love" that she always speaks of it. From her earliest days she had a special knowledge of the Divine Mercy, and one may say that this was the great light of her life and the grace proper to her mission. No one, it would seem, was ever more attracted than she was to this infinite mercy; no one penetrated further into its unfathomable secrets; no one better understood the immensity of the help that human weakness can draw from it. "The mercy of God was the illuminating sun of her soul, that which, to her eyes, threw light upon all the mystery of God in His relations with man." That this was so she tells us herself. "All souls cannot be alike. They must differ so that each divine perfection may receive special honour. To me He has manifested His infinite mercy, and in this resplendent mirror I contemplate his other attributes. There each appears radiant with love."

 

There is another Carmelite document written by a Carmelite nun, not a proclaimed saint, Sister is reflecting about St Therese and her Little Way.....

:http://showcase.netins.net/web/solitude/vilma5.html

"Therese - Spirituality of Imperfection (Finding Strength in Weakness) Parts 1 and 2.

I know I am quoting below an awful lot from Part 2 - my apologies.  I have tried to be concise, but there is so much packed into what is not a lengthy document really, I wanted to post (what I thought anyway) just might be helpful to some........When I first read Part 1 and 2, it really bowled me over.

Quote

 

Part 2: Excerpt "Fortunately, she discovered early in life that neither her recorded acts of virtue, nor her burning zeal in practicing spiritual exercises, nor her profound experiences and reverential tears after communions-- not even the smile of the Virgin-- none of these help her in overcoming even the least of her faults. The more she tries, the greater and more depressing are her failures and her entanglement in scruples. During the time of her scruples, every thought and even her most commonplace actions became a source of worry and anxiety. Her extreme helplessness meant either despair or finding a new way in the struggle to balance her own weakness before the justice of God............

................What matures in Thérèse is not a denial of the eternal bliss or of the treasures of heaven, but a deepened spiritual sense of her own unworthiness and of the incomprehensible mercy of God who deals with us according to God's graciousness and not according to our merits. This is the purification of hope which John of the Cross describes so well in his writings.9 Thérèse develops from a childish desire for spiritual rewards to an attitude of profound theological hope. God alone became her reward...............

.........What directs her on a path of integration? I think it is her love of truth which enables her to penetrate the reality of the human condition as fragile and finite, yet passionately loved by God. She can now surrender to the wedding of seeming opposites: spirituality and imperfection. She is able to embrace her imperfections as integral to her life with God. Instead of being obstacles, they become for her a meeting place with Christ who has taken her weakness upon Himself. Not only does she sustain a daring hope in the midst of darkness--where all roads for her appear equally dark -- she also comes to a remarkable shift in vision..................Thérèse sees her through the eyes of God. The gospels become for Thérèse, God's Way, and therefore, her way, with the spirit of the gospel reflecting itself in her daily living. Her father's illness is not just passively endured. Instead, in his humiliation, and hers (for she and her sisters are blamed for the illness) Thérèse discovers the humiliated face of Christ. She lets go of the prevailing obsession with justice and surrenders to God's merciful love. (My comment - Therese wrote the following in her autobiography) Even if she has every sin on her conscience, she would, like the prodigal son, throw herself into the arms of Jesus with complete trust and abandonment..................We are a complex reality. As imago Dei (image of God), we are an infinite capacity for God, but we are not God. As humans, we are finite, thus limited. Imperfection, weaknesses and sin, a potential for physical and psychic illness, mark us - without at the same time defining our person. Ultimately, we are mirrors of the divine, created in the image of God.13.................

What is important here is not the specific "IMPERFECTIONS" which make up our personality, whether we are man or woman, but our ability to name them accurately and to let them become a place where we invite God for healing and transformation. To again quote Thérèse: "If you can bear in peace the trial of being displeasing to yourself, you offer a sweet shelter to Jesus. It is true that it hurts you to find yourself thrust outside the door of your own self."

................I suggest that this is what happens when we are out of touch with and unaccepting of ourselves in our finitude: We are outside the door of our own selves. We need to rejoin the human race rotfl. Thérèse continues, "Fear not; the poorer you become, the more Jesus will love you." What I think this means is that the more we can acknowledge our need for God the more we are walking in the truth and thus more receptive of God's love which is the source of true inner strength, divine healing and transformation...............

.................Teresa of Avila helps me to draw these reflection to a close The sixth dwelling place of the Interior Castle describes the phenomenon of God's continued self-communication to Teresa. She experiences God as delighting in her. It seems we humans, in spite of our imperfections, are God's eternal ecstasy. In this dwelling place, a remarkable shift in imagery happens. Until this point, Teresa presents the soul as a castle with many dwelling places, with God in the center room. Now however, deep secrets in God are revealed to her. In a vision she sees God to be like an immense and beautiful dwelling place or palace, and that this palace, is God's Self. She says; that within this palace, that is within God everything for good or for evil takes place.22........................

When, we refuse to acknowledge and befriend our limitations and imperfections, we easily enter into the painful isolation of self-pity or self-hate or self aggrandizement. We hide feelings of inadequacy by exercising power and control, or we disintegrate into spineless self-effacement (My comment - like me! and ok, if that is where I am at, that is where I am at - one thing is for sure, I cannot be but where I am-  and where I will find Jesus and He will find me until and if He chooses to lift me out of the mire of my own "spineless self-effacement":sad2:). ........In the acceptance of our humanity as finite, and imperfect, yet passionately loved by God, we let go of our facades. Like Thérèse we discover an inner well-spring of peace that sustains us in the midst of our daily struggles (my comment - and spineless self effacement) and which can reveal God's intimate presence calling us to be more ourselves..............................We began by saying that we are spiritual beings. We all have spirituality. Our part is to recognize its source and meaning within the mystery of our relationship with God and other persons. We are spiritual beings because of our pre-disposition for God.24 A spirituality of imperfection then is not "anything goes" or "what you see is what you get." Rather, it is the simple admission that in spite of our best efforts, we all fall short. But as long as the heart is intent on loving, our failures are not the issue. God is a consuming fire. We are a spark of God. If we but surrender ourselves, God will consume all, even our imperfections, in the fire of Divine Love. The point is that our heart be free to love.

 

 Next post:  Conversion = metanoia = reversal of direction :think:

Edited by BarbaraTherese

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penitent60

I adored your last post Barbara Therese, because surely God has a sense of humour when He thought to give me the gifts that I have' but He is never malicious, that's just my imperfect understanding. That is part of the problem in my world....I feel that God is quite schizophrenic...after all He is 3 IN 1, or maybe it is His church, again it is probably my crazy understanding. Probably the best thing for me at present is that I have returned to the Faith as in the past I would be doing the self harming thing by now, but I just try to offer up any suffering for my past misdeeds and for humanity in general. I have battled this stuff for over 50 years and I am still here, so don't be afeared for me. I am terribly grateful to communicate with a devout Catholic who is also afflicted.

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