Monday, July 11, 2011

I got tired

There was a time when Jesus did not factor into my life much, if at all.  I wasn't even sure I really believed that He existed.  I couldn't shake a belief in God, but I didn't know how to define Him either.  I prayed, but only when I needed or wanted something I couldn't get on my own. I didn't really give much thought to the way my life was impacting others at all.  I pursued success, and my definition of success was having whatever I wanted when I wanted it.  That included whatever guy I'd decided suited my fancy.

I did have a sort of code that I lived by, loosely based upon the morals of Christianity. I didn't go for married men or men who were in any kind of committed relationship. I didn't steal from others, but I didn't count software pirating, failing to repay loans, or failing to pay bills as stealing.  I counted myself as being honesty, but I was never honest with anyone about who I really was or how I really felt and I certainly didn't count all the lies I told to avoid responsibility for mistakes I'd made.  I counted myself as reliable, but never looked at all the times I'd promised to do something and failed to follow through. I thought I was forgiving, but I would take away my trust from others the minute they did something to let me down.

There were inklings along the way that my life choices were damaging other people, but I made excuses for it. I hurt people, but I told myself it was just because that person couldn't "handle" having that kind of relationship with me. I probably would have continued this little game if not for the fact that God loved me far more than I loved myself.  He gave me a baby at the age of 19, and blessed me with poverty.

That baby, at age 8, confronted me and told me not only that he was going to kill himself but exactly how. The person in my life I counted as most precious to me I nearly lost because I was so self-centered I couldn't see his pain.  That day changed me. It stopped me dead in my tracks, forced me to rethink my life, to ask questions I hadn't bothered to ask before.

When I finally realized that the common denominator in the pain of all these people I knew was ME, I got tired.  I got tired of hurting people. I got tired of causing other people pain. I got tired of the energy it took to lie to myself all the time.  I started searching for answers, for a way to live that would allow me not to hurt others.  I found the Church, and then I found Christ.

That's why I'm Catholic today, because I got tired of it all.  I got sick of who I was and the pain that I was causing the people I cared about the most. I got tired of living without boundaries that would allow me to walk without fear.  And I came home. Home to the Church that had tried to teach me these things from the beginning.  Home to Christ, the very personification of the love that I wanted to know and to give.  If you haven't found Jesus yet, but you're tired of the wreckage of broken relationships and wounded hearts that are the result of the lifestyle you've chosen, talk to me. The journey won't be easy. It's a lot of work to make that change, but I do promise it will be worth it.

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