Unsure about my faith

So I grew up in a fairly religious household. My mom was a sunday school teacher turned ordained minster, and I attended Lutheran and Catholic schools when I was younger. My grandmother is a devout catholic very involved in the church. Around 9th grade I became very disillusioned about the church because my mom was putting more time into that than me and my younger siblings. The pastor didn’t like me at the church and would make petty remarks about me during the sermon. And even going back to elementary school I had a sunday school teacher tell me god was not pleased with the dollar I brought for offering and he wanted me to ask my parents for more money. And just the last year made me really question if there is a god that cares about me I had to leave university for the year because I had a mental breakdown and was hospitalized, I was in a very one-sided relationship, and later that year I got diagnosed with a chronic neurological condition that will impact me for the rest of my life. This year within two months I lost my great grandmother, and then I lost my grandpa to COVID-19. My dad was laid off from his job and my mom is being furloughed. But something happened this week that gives me a glimmer of hope, I had two job interviews and one for an internship and my school was able to find enough aid to cover my tuition for this semester. Despite this, I feel like I’m not worthy in god’s eyes because I’m bisexual and have a lot of beliefs that don’t lineup with the mainstream church. I’m just not sure where to turn right now. Thanks.

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Hey I know you’re having it pretty rough,
First of all sorry for your loss. Secondly I know times are hard but everyone is worthy don’t be so hard on yourself. We all have our ups and our downs. The best thing to do is to stick together with your family stay strong support each other and we’ll all overcome.
Hope everything works out well for you!

Hey friend,

I’m sorry about all of the things you have struggled with within your family and within your church.

While I cannot tell you what is the better choice for you, I just wanted to say that you’re not alone. I fought a long emotional battle when it came to my spirituality and my beliefs. I struggled with similar things that you have that made it hard for me to stay within the church.

I came out when I was 19 about my sexuality and had a lot of hard feedback from my family, my church and my friends that made me question everything. I was told I was selfish for how I felt and that I was living in sin.

It took a toll on me.

I just wanted to come in and tell you:

  • You are worthy. Of love. Of acceptance. Of respect.
  • It is okay to be your true self. To love yourself. To be proud of who you are. To accept yourself.
  • You matter. Your feelings matter. Who you are and what makes you you matters. It is okay.

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Hey @cxbachx,

Thanks for sharing and being here. It means a lot. :hrtlegolove:

And just the last year made me really question if there is a god that cares about me

Despite this, I feel like I’m not worthy in god’s eyes because I’m bisexual and have a lot of beliefs that don’t lineup with the mainstream church. I’m just not sure where to turn right now. Thanks.

All the reasons you mentioned that led you to those questions and feelings are totally understandable. And honestly reading your post really hits home. I’ve been finding myself in a similar situation, obviously for different reasons. I’ve also been questioning the existence of God for the last couple of years, as things were just piling up in my life. Violence, experiences that were objectively traumatic, health struggle and losses. It’s tough. What really decided me to give up on my own beliefs was to lose my brother two years ago. It didn’t make sense to me, and still doesn’t. Or as human beings, we crave for meaning in our life. I guess life is full of things we can’t control, unanswered responses. But it’s hard to wrap our head around that sometimes.

I’ve been okay to repeat “I don’t believe in God” for years. But I came to the point of realizing that it just hurts. Because I feel divided between my heart and the pain that I’ve been carrying from life experiences. I wondered many times - and still do - why all of those things happened to me? Did I deserve it? It’s painful to ask yourself this kind of question. It can make you question your own existence.

I guess by sharing this I just want to emphasize something important: it’s okay to feel how you feel. And you’re absolutely not alone while navigating between those doubts, questions, feelings. :hrtlegolove:

An other side of it is that other feeling you mentioned: not being worthy in God’s eyes. Man. I feel for you, with all my heart. I relate to this feeling so deeply. And I’m certainly not a good person to share any spiritual insight. But what I do know is that you are loved as you are. And that love goes beyond what any human being could say to you. A same message can be interpreted in so many different ways. It can be used for wrong purposes. But there’s nothing wrong with you, friend. Your sexual orientation doesn’t change anything.

This can be a very personal interpretation, but I want to believe that our spirituality, no matter how it is, holds in our heart first. You said you have a lot of beliefs that don’t lineup with the mainstream church? Then maybe you’ll need to surround yourself with people who live according to beliefs that are similar to yours. Our environment can really impact us, make us feel guilty, not good enough, not worthy enough, which is not fair. We need a certain amount of safety to express ourselves and find growth, whether it’s spiritual or not.

It’s only a suggestion, you are free to use this resource or not, but if you want to discuss about this topic and/or challenge some of your thoughts in a safe space, then maybe you could catch up the streams of those guys: https://www.twitch.tv/godsquadchurch They’re friends of the HS community, willing to discuss and share about spiritual concerns. You can just lurk and build your own opinion before sharing there - no obligation at all.

Also, as a more personal way to question and reflect on your own faith/beliefs, there are 2 books on the HS resources that could be helpful, “Mountains” and “The Embrace” : https://heartsupport.com/resources/ Personally I’m currently giving a try to The Embrace, as it was likely to be more about questions I’m experiencing right now. For the moment, it helps at least to put some words on what I’m experiencing. I’m aware that it won’t give any particular answer as this is a very personal and slow process, a journey. I hope those resources could be helpful to you at some point, even if not right now. Everything has to come at a proper time.

Give yourself this time, patience, grace that you need. It’s okay. You’ve been through a lot, even recently, and it takes time to process, also to heal.

You’re beautiful as you are and you are worthy of love. Take care. :hrtlegolove: