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talking to myself

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Which Cross will you carry?

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markdohle

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Which Cross will you carry?

 

“The life of a Christian is nothing but a perpetual struggle against self;
there is no flowering of the soul to the beauty of its perfection except at the price of pain”
Padre Pio

 

People often balk when they read comments like the above; or when Jesus talks about dying to self and taking up one's cross in order to follow him in life.  What is often forgotten is that anything we give our hearts and mind to, demands the same thing.  People give up everything for their careers.  They lose their family, their health and peace of mind in order to get to the top of their field.  Or if they give themselves over to some form of addiction, that does demand everything, body, mind, soul, and health.  We give our hearts to something.  We all have a pearl of great price that we will give everything up for.  Many of the things we can ‘worship’ will, in the end, drain us and leave us with nothing.  That is because they cannot touch that deep longing that drives us all towards some good than in the end can lead to death. 

 

So yes, to follow Jesus also demands everything.  Yet in following him, he gives us new life. When we die to ourselves his love brings us deeper into true being.  Jesus is not a false god, which gives promises that can’t be kept.  The Spirit of God works in all hearts who seek truth.  It is a mistake many Christians make, when they limit the work of God’s grace to a particular understanding of scripture.  God’s work in the world, in the hearts of all is something we are not meant to understand.  We are however called to live out our faith in Christ Jesus and to proclaim it in a gentle manner.  For all who seek will find and all who knock the door will be open. 

Padre Pio is a great Catholic saint, and tomorrow we celebrate his feast day.  He gave his life for others. He spent his days hearing confessions and leading many to a deeper love of Christ Jesus and he spoke the truth about the cost.  So in the end, we choose what is most important to us, if we don’t choose, well that will also demand everything as well.  We are not meant to stagnate, but to dive into the living waters that Christ promises us. 

Take up your cross….that’s right.  Which one do you want to carry?  A cross that will grind you down and eventually take everything and in the end leaving you empty and bereft of hope, or the Cross of Christ which also demands everything but gives deeper life and healing.—Br.MD

 

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XenoFish

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Which one do you want to carry?  A cross that will grind you down and eventually take everything and in the end leaving you empty and bereft of hope, or the Cross of Christ which also demands everything but gives deeper life and healing.—Br.MD

Follow us or else. No matter what religion, it all comes down to that. It sickens me.

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markdohle

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I don't see it that way, my friend.  It is an invitation to find a better way.   We can only be free when we actually take responsibility for our mistakes and our lives.  If we do not, we stay a victim to circumstances and go around in endless circles.  Only God knows the depths of the heart, we are told not to judge ourselves, since we cannot.  IN the end, we all depend on the mercy of God, which is is the fruit of love.

 

peace
mark

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Helen of Annoy

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19 hours ago, XenoFish said:

Follow us or else. No matter what religion, it all comes down to that. It sickens me.

When it comes to that – and it really does come to that with the businessmen of religions – it sickens me too.

But I think there are people, here it is Mark, who simply offer their honest observation, here that observation is from Christian perspective.

And I think it's one very true observation. No career or addiction will love you back. Not every person will love you back either, that's true too, and that's exactly where the challenge and the path are.

 

We'll probably disagree about significance of Christ, but we can probably agree that we have to put some effort into anything we choose to achieve. And it's our free choice. So I'd say it's a good and proven advice up there. It's not Mark's (or Christ's) fault that people often don't like to be reminded of these facts – it's our choice and it requires effort.

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XenoFish

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XenoFish said:  No matter what we do in life Mark. It doesn't matter. We all die. Great or small, important or not. Death is the only truth in life. Death is the only fact. Nothing matters, nothing. As for love, it's just a fleeting chemical reaction in the brain. Only meaningful if you make it so. Just another addiction at worst

 

So is being pessimistic at its best.  It is a shield to keep out pain, but I doubt it works my friend.  I do worry about you a bit ;-).

Peace
Mark

Edited by markdohle

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Helen of Annoy

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13 minutes ago, XenoFish said:

No matter what we do in life Mark. It doesn't matter. We all die. Great or small, important or not. Death is the only truth in life. Death is the only fact. Nothing matters, nothing. As for love, it's just a fleeting chemical reaction in the brain. Only meaningful if you make it so. Just another addiction at worst.

'scuse me for butting in again, but to be honest, you seem to put a lot of effort into your nihilism. Which is not just entertainingly ironic, but also an excellent sign - you obviously aren't depressed (depression, the only true nihilism, takes any will for any action away), just looking for the answers that would prove you wrong. These don't come in writing, naturally, but yes, you'll find them. Even through a nihilist phase, why not?   

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XenoFish

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Are you me? Do you know how I feel on a daily bases? Maybe I feel the way I do because there is nothing to believe in. Nothing matters. I'm going to die one day and everything that I will have every done shall amount to nothing. So what's the point?

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Helen of Annoy

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1 minute ago, XenoFish said:

Are you me? Do you know how I feel on a daily bases? Maybe I feel the way I do because there is nothing to believe in. Nothing matters. I'm going to die one day and everything that I will have every done shall amount to nothing. So what's the point?

Spite? There was that time in my life when I was living simply out of spite. No, really. Of course, you're probably not that spiteful :D but I'm trying to illustrate how weird it can be, what weirdness can be that 'the point' for someone, at certain point of their life. I'm much better now, now I live out of morbid curiosity :lol: Seriously :lol: 

Truly, I'm not you, but if I were you, I'd ask myself what was that particular disappointment that threw me into that nihilist phase. And I'd spite myself out of it. Because it works for me. What works for you, that's what you have to tell me. But there must be something that can break that almost depression you're in.  

 

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XenoFish

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I know the moment that broke me and I can not go back to before that. Even during that time, I had trust and I had faith in spiritual things. Casting my spells, firing sigils, and even taking a vow to God for it all to work out. It did, at least to an survivable level. Leaving me confused and this confusion has generated massive frustration in me. I hate it. I want to believe, to trust again, but that pain won't let me. I can not shake it. Okay, there are you happy. That's what's bothering me. I can not reconcile it. I'm too afraid to trust anything. To the point where I hate everything.

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Helen of Annoy

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2 minutes ago, XenoFish said:

I know the moment that broke me and I can not go back to before that. Even during that time, I had trust and I had faith in spiritual things. Casting my spells, firing sigils, and even taking a vow to God for it all to work out. It did, at least to an survivable level. Leaving me confused and this confusion has generated massive frustration in me. I hate it. I want to believe, to trust again, but that pain won't let me. I can not shake it. Okay, there are you happy. That's what's bothering me. I can not reconcile it. I'm too afraid to trust anything. To the point where I hate everything.

Now I will disappoint you some more: it happened to us all at some point, or even few times. Welcome to the club. Of course, there are those blessed with utter simplicity who escape this sort of trial, but everyone else was or will be there. 

It's an obstacle you are supposed to survive. Or not. Another own choice. 

I bet on you, though. You're asking, you're nagging, you're protesting... you are a survivor. 

Now, the confusion... those who claim they've sorted all out are lying. We're all confused and full of doubt and fear and whatnot. Just read Mark's other posts - they're excellent, by the way - he too openly testifies about his own inner turmoil.

But to be so sure nothing matters... personally, I'd never be so sure something so illogical is true. I'm not saying your logic is somehow less correct than mine, I'm just saying that nihilism is completely, even hilariously illogical to me. 

 

I have to go now, but will you please remember that I do bet on you? Because you're nagging which means you're intelligent and the Universe didn't create that by accident or without a meaning.  

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