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Author Topic: convert here losing interest?  (Read 2313 times) Average Rating: 0
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Timon
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« on: November 30, 2011, 02:54:34 AM »

well, maybe "losing interest" isnt the best way to put it.... here is part of a post that I wrote on another thread... ill just copy and paste this so I dont have to type it all again!

I have been attending vespers some, but I am not able to attend liturgy as I am still tied up working in another church on Sundays. My issue has been that for a while I was so interested in Orthodoxy (I still am by the way...) that I was constantly posting/reading on this site trying to learn as much as I can.  I even started attending vespers at a local parish and would even meet with the priest.  I ended up learning prayers and setting up an icon corner.  All of this stuff was tremendously benefitting my prayer life, but now I feel like it has declined a little bit. 

Its kind of a weird feeling.  I feel like I dont need to ask questions anymore because I am already convinced that I am in line with Orthodox theology.  I also plan to join the church someday.  Its just weird that I feel like my decline has been a result of finally being convinced that this is whats right.  It seems like it should be the other way around.  Now that I know its right, shouldnt I be even more "on fire"? (the term "on fire" is something that I accidentally brought with me from my protestant days...)


in addition, I just feel weird that I shared my interest in Orthodoxy with so many people and told them how much more "complete" i felt, even by doing some smaller things like build an icon corner. now, i sort of feel "incomplete" again.  most of this im sure is my fault.  im just not praying/reading as regularly as I was. the desire or "fire" isnt as strong. (and i realize that sounds awful) i hope that someone here can understand what i am saying and relate.  most of you will probably say that I feel incomplete because I have not actually joined the church.  how do i know that i wont eventually feel incomplete again if i do?  thats my biggest fear now in regards to the idea of converting.  id love to, but id hate to leave communion with everyone i know and love and risk not feeling that much different.  i dunno. hopefully someone has been where I am and can help!

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« Reply #1 on: November 30, 2011, 03:19:31 AM »

I know how you feel I was all about learning more but I have a very hard time coming out of what I was. I tried for a few weeks to go to church I went to one they had no parking tried that one twice then i saw there was another orthodox church so I tried going there on my way to the church I all most hit 2 deer then when I got to the church no one was around.  Sad
 Now when I think about going I always talk myself out of it like I don't have to many dress cloths to be getting into church anyways or I'm not really going to fit in being in my 30's and most people there will be older or what's an Irish, German Jew doing trying to go to an eastern church anyways for.

I don't really have an answer other than either it's the devil trying to stop us or God saying it's not the right time
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« Reply #2 on: November 30, 2011, 04:55:24 AM »

You aught to read the Screwtape Letters. You're experiencing "The Law of Undulation" Luckily that chapter is online, and you can read it here:

http://iansuffix.kontek.net/docs/screwtapeChpt8.htm

(note that there's a mistake in this copy; where it says "He cannot tempt to virtual" it should be "virtue")
« Last Edit: November 30, 2011, 04:58:55 AM by Joseph Hazen » Logged
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« Reply #3 on: November 30, 2011, 10:48:02 AM »

Joseph, thank you for posting that! Smiley

Timon, I am a catechumen and I am kind of in the same spot. We aren't falling in love with the church 24/7....we experience disillusionment, fatigue, and just plain ol' stagnancy. Once I got to the point where I felt that I knew enough to tell my priest that I wanted to be chrismated into the Church, things have been kind of lagging. All I do, for the most part, is fasting (not a very good job, at that) and attending DL every Sunday. Because of work and transportation I haven't been able to get to Vespers since God knows when.

However, this feeling overwhelms us in many areas: study, work, relationships. There are times where we're just kind of coasting along and not really getting anywhere. But it's at those times I know that we shouldn't give up. Sometimes I wake up and realize that I haven't prayed for a week. I could spend hours weeping over the fact or I could go to my icon corner IMMEDIATELY and start praying. It's a matter of picking up and carrying on. There is a time to think about it, but I think in our Christian lives we need a great deal more action and less "thinking."

Schedule another meeting with your local priest again, if you can, to get you on track. At this time you need to know that the Church is "the One," and you should immerse yourself in the services and community as much as possible.

The situation with your job is still tough, because as long as that little "what if" is still in the back of your mind, you may stall in making a decision for a long time. Perhaps you should seriously consider moving on. I'll be praying. Lord, have mercy.
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« Reply #4 on: November 30, 2011, 12:03:06 PM »

It's a matter of picking up and carrying on.
Simple truths are beautiful.

It is always important to avoid mistaking boy-I-think-this-is-neato-and-I-feel-super-super-spiritual for actual zeal.
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« Reply #5 on: November 30, 2011, 12:28:51 PM »

Don't feel so bad. What you experienced is very common. I've gone through it, more than once. Life moves in cycles like that. Something is very fresh and interesting when you first find out about it; then it becomes part of your life, and you've got to find reasons to refresh yourself. Take heart. Read the letters of St. Paul.  angel Relax, there is no need to move at breakneck speed. It'll get better.
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« Reply #6 on: November 30, 2011, 12:31:57 PM »

how about doing an exercise? Try to write down all of the ways that you as a inquirer possible catechumen can get "plugged" into the faith. I think this list will probably overwhelm you, but that is a good thing. Then take this list to your priest and ask him of these things which could you do to get more involved in the life of the church. Try these for a while, and then later do the same thing, meet with him and choose several more. Not so much to overwhelm you, but enough to enrich your faith and keep you from spiritual stagnation. If you want suggestions, we can provide them for you. Something on the top of that list should probably be a simple prayer rule.
« Last Edit: November 30, 2011, 12:34:33 PM by Ortho_cat » Logged
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« Reply #7 on: November 30, 2011, 12:40:32 PM »

Its just weird that I feel like my decline has been a result of finally being convinced that this is whats right.

Maybe it's Accedie. It manifests in a variety of forms, one being complacency.

Complacency is the work of the Devil. At a certain point in almost every catechumenate, the Devil does everything but stand in front of the church door and block your entrance. If you realize what's going on, and start recognizing the signs, it will actually make you laugh. Don't let Old Scratch win this one.

Plus, biro is correct: even the most serious Christian's religious life is subject to periodic fluctuation. It gives us a chance to mull things over, grow, and voluntarily re-commit ourselves to Him.

I'm not really going to fit in being in my 30's and most people there will be older or what's an Irish, German Jew doing trying to go to an eastern church anyways for.

Aw, c'mon. None of us fit in. All you have to be is human in order to 'fit in' the Church. I joined when I was in my mid-fifties. We have Africans and Indians; Chinese, Japanese, Esquimaux--all kinds of people. Jews? We love Jews. The church is called 'Catholic' because it is for everyone, Jew and Gentile.

There are going to be an awful lot of disappointed apostles, if you lose heart for a reason like that.
« Last Edit: November 30, 2011, 12:50:37 PM by sainthieu » Logged
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« Reply #8 on: November 30, 2011, 12:51:26 PM »

how about doing an exercise? Try to write down all of the ways that you as a inquirer possible catechumen can get "plugged" into the faith. I think this list will probably overwhelm you, but that is a good thing. Then take this list to your priest and ask him of these things which could you do to get more involved in the life of the church. Try these for a while, and then later do the same thing, meet with him and choose several more. Not so much to overwhelm you, but enough to enrich your faith and keep you from spiritual stagnation. If you want suggestions, we can provide them for you. Something on the top of that list should probably be a simple prayer rule.

and just a little more...you can make the list as general or as specific as you like. Either way, continue to fill the list in as new ideas come up and as you go along. Carry the list on as you go through your catechumenate and become Chrismated, then add onto the list. Ask your priest to help you with this and to keep you accountable to the decisions you come up with together. I think you will find that the ways we can enrich our faith is indeed limitless, and following through with them will benefit your spiritual life immensely. Just a suggestion...

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« Reply #9 on: November 30, 2011, 12:58:20 PM »

Thanks for the responses everyone.  I am very relieved to hear that I am not alone.  Ortho, what you mentioned sounds like a great idea.  I would love some examples to get started.  I do have a prayer rule that a priest gave me.  In fact, I feel like it may have been a little much.  Maybe that is part of my problem?

Ismi, I definitely think that I should immediately go pray next time Im feeling down about this.  Immediately praying definitely sounds like a better plan than getting upset over my lack of prayer.  Thanks for this!

Joseph, I own the book.  I will re-read that chapter. Its been a while!

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« Reply #10 on: November 30, 2011, 01:05:43 PM »

It sounds like you've done the things that an Orthodox Christian would do to sort of set up a proper environment in order to live their faith (becoming convinced of the truth of the faith and sharing that view with others, setting up the icon corner and whatnot). That's good, but now comes the hard part: Living it. One thing that really clicked with me a little while ago was when I was listening to Fr. Andrew S. Damick's "Orthodoxy and Heterodoxy" podcast on AFR and he said something like "Protestants generally see evangelization as passing on a piece of information, and convincing people as to the truth of that information; for Orthodox, the Christian faith is not just information -- it is a whole life."

Now, I knew that before he said it, but that's part of the point: Knowing something intellectually is good, but not really the same as living it and experiencing it. I'm always having to remind myself of that because I am often very busy so I'll listen to a lecture by an Orthodox bishop or priest while I'm doing some menial task, and then by the time I'm done I'm very tired and feel like I can't  concentrate on my own prayer and end up saying the introductory prayers of the Agpeya and then calling it a day. This is a recipe for having a shallow, unfulfilling prayer life, and it's not because listening to the wise words and guidance of others isn't a good thing, but because (again) knowing something and being convinced of something is not the same as doing something. There's no substitute for prayer and fasting, and those are the only things that will put you (er, me) on the right track again. If we all spent the time we spend posting here (or worrying about our wavering feelings or whatever) supplicating our Lord, well...this place would be quieter, but I bet we'd all be much healthier and more sure-footed.

I seem to post this a lot, but I haven't found any other place where so much wisdom is packed into 10 minutes: This is exactly how you get through what you are experiencing

There is also the idea that the "honeymoon period" of the convert should end, in order to build a more mature, deeper relationship with God and His church, and I agree with that, but again I think that comes through following advice of the type that is in His Holiness' sermon and elsewhere. Take strength from God through prayer and you will get through this and be stronger as a result.

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« Reply #11 on: November 30, 2011, 01:12:47 PM »

Quote
"Protestants generally see evangelization as passing on a piece of information, and convincing people as to the truth of that information; for Orthodox, the Christian faith is not just information -- it is a whole life."

I have heard this before, and it is very true!

Thanks for the information, and I am getting ready to watch that video right now!!
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« Reply #12 on: November 30, 2011, 01:13:54 PM »

Haha you sure do love that sermon, Jeremy!

You should add it to your signature instead of going through the trouble of posting it everywhere!  Grin
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« Reply #13 on: November 30, 2011, 01:24:42 PM »

Thanks for the responses everyone.  I am very relieved to hear that I am not alone.  Ortho, what you mentioned sounds like a great idea.  I would love some examples to get started.  I do have a prayer rule that a priest gave me.  In fact, I feel like it may have been a little much.  Maybe that is part of my problem?

Ismi, I definitely think that I should immediately go pray next time Im feeling down about this.  Immediately praying definitely sounds like a better plan than getting upset over my lack of prayer.  Thanks for this!

Joseph, I own the book.  I will re-read that chapter. Its been a while!



Your welcome Smiley It's possible that the prayer rule he gave you could be too much. You could mention that you are feeling overwhelmed with what he gave you and perhaps you could work together to get something more manageable. Saying the Jesus prayer once a day is better than having an elaborate prayer rule that you can never follow through with.

here are a few ideas off of the top of my head that could be incorporated into such a list:

-participate in the weekly fasts, or other fasts throughout the year (to the extent that you and your priest agree with)

-engage the physical aspect of worship during liturgy/private prayer (performing sign of the cross, appropriate bows, prostrations, etc.)

-if you're musically inclined, ask about trying out the choir

-make a pilgrimage to a holy site or a monastery, or to venerate a relic

-read the lives of the saints

-learn more about iconography and the methods behind it, and what they mean

-learn more about the liturgy itself, read some commentaries on the liturgy

-read the scriptures, read the father's commentaries

-have a small devotion to the Theotokos or your Saint you associate with

-follow the daily calendar/readings (e.g. Prologue of Ohrid)

just a few! Smiley
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« Reply #14 on: November 30, 2011, 01:37:16 PM »

Haha you sure do love that sermon, Jeremy!

You should add it to your signature instead of going through the trouble of posting it everywhere!  Grin

You noticed, eh? I sure do! Smiley
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« Reply #15 on: November 30, 2011, 01:50:12 PM »

Thanks for the responses everyone.  I am very relieved to hear that I am not alone.  Ortho, what you mentioned sounds like a great idea.  I would love some examples to get started.  I do have a prayer rule that a priest gave me.  In fact, I feel like it may have been a little much.  Maybe that is part of my problem?

Ismi, I definitely think that I should immediately go pray next time Im feeling down about this.  Immediately praying definitely sounds like a better plan than getting upset over my lack of prayer.  Thanks for this!

Joseph, I own the book.  I will re-read that chapter. Its been a while!



Your welcome Smiley It's possible that the prayer rule he gave you could be too much. You could mention that you are feeling overwhelmed with what he gave you and perhaps you could work together to get something more manageable. Saying the Jesus prayer once a day is better than having an elaborate prayer rule that you can never follow through with.

here are a few ideas off of the top of my head that could be incorporated into such a list:

-participate in the weekly fasts, or other fasts throughout the year (to the extent that you and your priest agree with)

-engage the physical aspect of worship during liturgy/private prayer (performing sign of the cross, appropriate bows, prostrations, etc.)

-if you're musically inclined, ask about trying out the choir

-make a pilgrimage to a holy site or a monastery, or to venerate a relic

-read the lives of the saints

-learn more about iconography and the methods behind it, and what they mean

-learn more about the liturgy itself, read some commentaries on the liturgy

-read the scriptures, read the father's commentaries

-have a small devotion to the Theotokos or your Saint you associate with

-follow the daily calendar/readings (e.g. Prologue of Ohrid)

just a few! Smiley

Thanks a ton! I should participate in fasting more.  I always fast during lent, as a lot of protestants do, but unfortunately thats it.  I would LOVE more than anything to visit a monastery.  I should make that happen.  I was so jealous of the 2 guys in "mysteries of the Jesus prayer." That was so cool to me.

I recently downloaded some writings of the fathers on my kindle.  Now, I should actually read them!

And lastly, I do keep up with the greek calendar daily readings.  I have the "daily readings" app on my iphone.  I use that to see what I should read, then I read it out of one of my actual bibles rather than on the phone.  However, I noticed the other day that the reading for that day was extremely random and I didnt even understand it.  That was discouraging to me, but I think it was a result of the phase that I am in. 
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« Reply #16 on: November 30, 2011, 06:09:34 PM »

i love this:
"It is always important to avoid mistaking boy-I-think-this-is-neato-and-I-feel-super-super-spiritual for actual zeal."

thanks, agabus!
we should focus on being more like Jesus rather than feeling close to Him and getting carried away with our emotions.
real spiritual growth comes when u pray, fast and love yr neighbour when u don't 'feel' like it.
then God will reward u with peace
 Smiley
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« Reply #17 on: November 30, 2011, 06:18:14 PM »

Thanks for the responses everyone.  I am very relieved to hear that I am not alone.  Ortho, what you mentioned sounds like a great idea.  I would love some examples to get started.  I do have a prayer rule that a priest gave me.  In fact, I feel like it may have been a little much.  Maybe that is part of my problem?

Ismi, I definitely think that I should immediately go pray next time Im feeling down about this.  Immediately praying definitely sounds like a better plan than getting upset over my lack of prayer.  Thanks for this!

Joseph, I own the book.  I will re-read that chapter. Its been a while!



Your welcome Smiley It's possible that the prayer rule he gave you could be too much. You could mention that you are feeling overwhelmed with what he gave you and perhaps you could work together to get something more manageable. Saying the Jesus prayer once a day is better than having an elaborate prayer rule that you can never follow through with.

here are a few ideas off of the top of my head that could be incorporated into such a list:

-participate in the weekly fasts, or other fasts throughout the year (to the extent that you and your priest agree with)

-engage the physical aspect of worship during liturgy/private prayer (performing sign of the cross, appropriate bows, prostrations, etc.)

-if you're musically inclined, ask about trying out the choir

-make a pilgrimage to a holy site or a monastery, or to venerate a relic

-read the lives of the saints

-learn more about iconography and the methods behind it, and what they mean

-learn more about the liturgy itself, read some commentaries on the liturgy

-read the scriptures, read the father's commentaries

-have a small devotion to the Theotokos or your Saint you associate with

-follow the daily calendar/readings (e.g. Prologue of Ohrid)

just a few! Smiley

Thanks a ton! I should participate in fasting more.  I always fast during lent, as a lot of protestants do, but unfortunately thats it.  I would LOVE more than anything to visit a monastery.  I should make that happen.  I was so jealous of the 2 guys in "mysteries of the Jesus prayer." That was so cool to me.

I recently downloaded some writings of the fathers on my kindle.  Now, I should actually read them!

And lastly, I do keep up with the greek calendar daily readings.  I have the "daily readings" app on my iphone.  I use that to see what I should read, then I read it out of one of my actual bibles rather than on the phone.  However, I noticed the other day that the reading for that day was extremely random and I didnt even understand it.  That was discouraging to me, but I think it was a result of the phase that I am in. 

Just a quick note- if the daily readings app you're using is the GOArch one the reading for today, while it didn't follow the reading yesterday, was not exactly "random". Today is the Feast of St Andrew and the reading was appropriate for that Feast.
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« Reply #18 on: November 30, 2011, 07:59:10 PM »

You aught to read the Screwtape Letters. You're experiencing "The Law of Undulation" Luckily that chapter is online, and you can read it here:

http://iansuffix.kontek.net/docs/screwtapeChpt8.htm

(note that there's a mistake in this copy; where it says "He cannot tempt to virtual" it should be "virtue")

the entire book is worth reading, C.S. Lewis's depth of insight into the spiritual warfare, as well as human nature, is  displayed with delightful humor. after reading some of his other books I told my little sister about him and she in turn went and got this one for me, I thought it was a God sent.
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« Reply #19 on: November 30, 2011, 08:04:40 PM »

dezheremi, Oh WOW ! that was so beautiful! Thank you for posting that sermon!
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Only pray for me, that God would give me both inward and outward strength, that I may not only speak, but truly will; and that I may not merely be called a Christian, but really be found to be one. St.Ignatius of Antioch.Epistle to the Romans.
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« Reply #20 on: December 01, 2011, 12:09:40 AM »

Quote
Just a quick note- if the daily readings app you're using is the GOArch one the reading for today, while it didn't follow the reading yesterday, was not exactly "random". Today is the Feast of St Andrew and the reading was appropriate for that Feast.

yea i know... this was a few days ago. even still, im sure it was relevant.
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« Reply #21 on: December 01, 2011, 10:18:39 AM »

Dezheremi, I want to thank you for posting that sermon as well.  You may have posted it many times but it was the first time I saw it.  If you are ever hesitant about posting it 'one more time'... Please post it again. Because there will always be someone reading a particular thread that will find your post for the first time.
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« Reply #22 on: December 01, 2011, 10:46:06 AM »

i love this:
"It is always important to avoid mistaking boy-I-think-this-is-neato-and-I-feel-super-super-spiritual for actual zeal."

thanks, agabus!
we should focus on being more like Jesus rather than feeling close to Him and getting carried away with our emotions.
real spiritual growth comes when u pray, fast and love yr neighbour when u don't 'feel' like it.
then God will reward u with peace
 Smiley

+1! I totally agree. If you are sincere, Jesus and the saints will help you in your up and downs. If you do decide to commit, you will be able to take advantage of your priest and choose him as your spiritual father. He can give you guidance and help.
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« Reply #23 on: December 05, 2011, 01:19:59 PM »

One of the things that I am most grateful for is that at those times when I just can't do it for myself, the Church, the Body of Christ, does it for me and carries me. When I became Orthodox, the relief was incredible - I felt that I was setting down a burden I had carried for a long time. Even when I am at my lowest ebb, the Church provides a plan and I can follow that plan.

(And, btw, while our parish has limited parking (we're located in an older historic intown neighborhood, most are in their 20's and 30's. Myself, I'm Irish and German ancestry and my priest is a Jewish convert.)
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« Reply #24 on: December 06, 2011, 02:31:44 AM »

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(And, btw, while our parish has limited parking (we're located in an older historic intown neighborhood, most are in their 20's and 30's. Myself, I'm Irish and German ancestry and my priest is a Jewish convert.)

St. John the Wonderworker right? Weve talked before here. I know exactly where that is!
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« Reply #25 on: December 06, 2011, 03:07:32 AM »

I know what you mean.

I didn't experience this as a catechumen, but I certainly have as a new convert.  Your not "losing interest".  It's simply a phase that we all go through (mostly more than once).  You will, by the grace of God, get through it!

I had a phase like this not too long ago, and I just got over it this Sunday.  I go through this period where "Yay!  It's time to get up for liturgy!" turns into "ugh...there is so much else I could be doing!"  But you do get over it.  As my godmother is fond of saying: "This, too, shall pass."

My wonderful spiritual father gave me this advice:  (paraphrasing).   If you water a plant all of the time, the roots will grow shallow.  But if you water it, then let it set without water for a while, it's roots will grow deeper into the ground.  Our zeal (as I call it) is the same way.  If we have that wonderful rush of zeal all the time, our faith won't grow as deep as if we are allowed to experience this small drought we feel.  But the Lord always comes with his watering can some time or later, and we feel better (now I feel like a hippie!)

Best of Luck!
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« Reply #26 on: December 06, 2011, 03:17:08 AM »

I know what you mean.

I didn't experience this as a catechumen, but I certainly have as a new convert.  Your not "losing interest".  It's simply a phase that we all go through (mostly more than once).  You will, by the grace of God, get through it!

I had a phase like this not too long ago, and I just got over it this Sunday.  I go through this period where "Yay!  It's time to get up for liturgy!" turns into "ugh...there is so much else I could be doing!"  But you do get over it.  As my godmother is fond of saying: "This, too, shall pass."

My wonderful spiritual father gave me this advice:  (paraphrasing).   If you water a plant all of the time, the roots will grow shallow.  But if you water it, then let it set without water for a while, it's roots will grow deeper into the ground.  Our zeal (as I call it) is the same way.  If we have that wonderful rush of zeal all the time, our faith won't grow as deep as if we are allowed to experience this small drought we feel.  But the Lord always comes with his watering can some time or later, and we feel better (now I feel like a hippie!)

Best of Luck!

Great advice Trevor. You are maturing in the faith well beyond your years Smiley
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« Reply #27 on: December 06, 2011, 03:20:53 AM »

One of the things that I am most grateful for is that at those times when I just can't do it for myself, the Church, the Body of Christ, does it for me and carries me. When I became Orthodox, the relief was incredible - I felt that I was setting down a burden I had carried for a long time. Even when I am at my lowest ebb, the Church provides a plan and I can follow that plan.

(And, btw, while our parish has limited parking (we're located in an older historic intown neighborhood, most are in their 20's and 30's. Myself, I'm Irish and German ancestry and my priest is a Jewish convert.)

I'd like to add to this, in response to your comment about ethnicity.

We're OCA, founded by Russians, but most of us (seriously, a good 70-75%) are British Americans!

I'm a mix of Slavic, German/French (German grandma's from alsace-lorraine), Irish, and Northern English/Southern Scottish ancestry. 

As much as I'd love my last name to be Shevchenko or Papadopoulos, I'm a British American with a boring old Scottish surname, and this has NEVER held me back from Christ or the Church!


Christ and His Church is for everyone Smiley
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« Reply #28 on: December 06, 2011, 03:31:37 AM »

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(And, btw, while our parish has limited parking (we're located in an older historic intown neighborhood, most are in their 20's and 30's. Myself, I'm Irish and German ancestry and my priest is a Jewish convert.)

St. John the Wonderworker right? Weve talked before here. I know exactly where that is!

We talking Cherokee Ave, or am I off?  If so, amazing parish.
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« Reply #29 on: December 06, 2011, 04:34:41 AM »

Orthodoxy is the true judaism and where a jew should be.

Another reason for jews to come is because they are living as a result of promise made by Jesus to Abraham, thata Abaraham would have children like numbers of stars. Jesus name before adopting human nature for salvation of humanity. Jesus name at that time was Word of God. Jesus names jews as "My own". Where Word of God that gave them life is, Jews must be too. Genesis 15:1 tells clearly about Word of God that will take the nmame of Jesus, making the promise to Abraham.
GEN 15:1 After these things the word of Yahweh came to Abram in a vision, saying, "Don't be afraid, Abram. I am your shield, your exceedingly great reward."
GEN 15:2 Abram said, "Lord Yahweh, what will you give me, seeing I go childless, and he who will inherit my estate is Eliezer of Damascus?"
GEN 15:3 Abram said, "Behold, to me you have given no seed: and, behold, one born in my house is my heir."
GEN 15:4 Behold, the word of Yahweh came to him, saying, "This man will not be your heir, but he who will come forth out of your own body will be your heir."
 

 Jeremiah 31:34 tells you about a New Law and Daniel tells you about Messiah comming before temple was destroyed, that is before year 70. Also book of Adam and Eve talks about Messiah comming in year 5500 from Creation which happen on the time of Jesus.
Comming and leaving is so dangerous that not comming may be better if you are unsure. Dangerous is also not comming that is to go in after life without immortality.
If a good neighborhood in after life is important for you then comming and not leaving is the option. Otherwise, karate ,jiujitsu, judo since you may have to fight not with gladiators, lions, SEALS, and so on, with somebody more terrifiant, the sick angels.

Wikipedia Sheol tell jews not comming that training in jujitsu is mandatory, that is everybody in their faith goes to Sheol in after life... Gnashing of teeth is not because of happy life.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sheol
"Sheol ( /ˈʃiːoʊl/ shee-ohl or /ˈʃiːəl/ shee-əl; Hebrew שְׁאוֹל Šʾôl) is the "grave", "pit", or "abyss" in Hebrew.[1][2] She'ol[3] is the earliest conception of the afterlife in the Jewish scriptures. It is a place of darkness to which all dead go, regardless of the moral choices made in life, and where they are "removed from the light of God" (see the Book of Job). In the Tanakh sheol is the common destination of both the righteous and the unrighteous flesh, as recounted in Ecclesiastes and Job."

So in the end, the true question is what is somebody doing outside Eastern orthodox Church, that gives you safe neighborhood, good life in after life?
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« Reply #30 on: December 06, 2011, 02:58:17 PM »

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(And, btw, while our parish has limited parking (we're located in an older historic intown neighborhood, most are in their 20's and 30's. Myself, I'm Irish and German ancestry and my priest is a Jewish convert.)

St. John the Wonderworker right? Weve talked before here. I know exactly where that is!

We talking Cherokee Ave, or am I off?  If so, amazing parish.

Yes, indeedy. Btw, thanks to the incredible generosity and commitment of our parishioners, (and we are not a large or wealthy parish) we just paid off our mortgage and now we own our church free and clear! Y'all are all invited to the mortgage burning!
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« Reply #31 on: December 06, 2011, 03:13:02 PM »

St. John the Wonderworker right? Weve talked before here. I know exactly where that is!
We talking Cherokee Ave, or am I off?  If so, amazing parish.

Yes, indeedy. Btw, thanks to the incredible generosity and commitment of our parishioners, (and we are not a large or wealthy parish) we just paid off our mortgage and now we own our church free and clear! Y'all are all invited to the mortgage burning!

Wonderful news, congratulations, and Glory to God!  I've got a real soft spot for your parish.  Good on you for helping run such a vibrant church.
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« Reply #32 on: December 06, 2011, 03:53:11 PM »

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(And, btw, while our parish has limited parking (we're located in an older historic intown neighborhood, most are in their 20's and 30's. Myself, I'm Irish and German ancestry and my priest is a Jewish convert.)

St. John the Wonderworker right? Weve talked before here. I know exactly where that is!

We talking Cherokee Ave, or am I off?  If so, amazing parish.

Yes, indeedy. Btw, thanks to the incredible generosity and commitment of our parishioners, (and we are not a large or wealthy parish) we just paid off our mortgage and now we own our church free and clear! Y'all are all invited to the mortgage burning!

That's great. Can I bring my mortgage to the event? I'd love to burn it along with my tax bill. LOL
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« Reply #33 on: December 06, 2011, 05:37:03 PM »

St. John the Wonderworker right? Weve talked before here. I know exactly where that is!
We talking Cherokee Ave, or am I off?  If so, amazing parish.

Yes, indeedy. Btw, thanks to the incredible generosity and commitment of our parishioners, (and we are not a large or wealthy parish) we just paid off our mortgage and now we own our church free and clear! Y'all are all invited to the mortgage burning!

Wonderful news, congratulations, and Glory to God!  I've got a real soft spot for your parish.  Good on you for helping run such a vibrant church.

What makes it even more wonderful is that we paid off the mortgage in about 4 years. We made the commitment several years ago to do this and with a final push this fall, we accomplished our goal.

(One of the things that I appreciate most about our parish Wink is that parish council meetings generally last an hour. Our personal best was 45 minutes but to be fair, our priest didn't have much to report and some of the members were absent! Grin)
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« Reply #34 on: December 07, 2011, 11:02:32 AM »

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(And, btw, while our parish has limited parking (we're located in an older historic intown neighborhood, most are in their 20's and 30's. Myself, I'm Irish and German ancestry and my priest is a Jewish convert.)

St. John the Wonderworker right? Weve talked before here. I know exactly where that is!

We talking Cherokee Ave, or am I off?  If so, amazing parish.

Yes, indeedy. Btw, thanks to the incredible generosity and commitment of our parishioners, (and we are not a large or wealthy parish) we just paid off our mortgage and now we own our church free and clear! Y'all are all invited to the mortgage burning!

I need to ride down there and check it out soon!
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« Reply #35 on: December 13, 2011, 03:31:29 AM »

If you have truly been convinced concerning the Orthodox faith, then presently zealous or not you are spoiled for everything else…and the time will come when you must choose regardless of how you "feel".

Then you will be in a similar situation to the Apostles when Christ gave them the hard saying about how they must eat His flesh and drink His blood or else have no part in Him.  And when many had left, what did He say to those who remained? Did he congratulate them on their sensible choice? No. He just looked at them and said, "Aren't you leaving too?" (or words to that effect). Though still troubled and sorrowful, they replied, "Lord, to whom shall we go? Thou hast the words of eternal life."

And that is the way it is ultimately…Christ before us when our faith is shaken and our foundations trembling, asking if we are staying or leaving. No bright lights, no goose bumps, no soaring certainties, no explanations,…just silence waiting for a quiet "farewell" or "Lord, to whom shall we go?"
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« Reply #36 on: December 15, 2011, 02:41:19 PM »

If you have truly been convinced concerning the Orthodox faith, then presently zealous or not you are spoiled for everything elseand the time will come when you must choose regardless of how you "feel".
Then you will be in a similar situation to the Apostles when Christ gave them the hard saying about how they must eat His flesh and drink His blood or else have no part in Him.  And when many had left, what did He say to those who remained? Did he congratulate them on their sensible choice? No. He just looked at them and said, "Aren't you leaving too?" (or words to that effect). Though still troubled and sorrowful, they replied, "Lord, to whom shall we go? Thou hast the words of eternal life."

And that is the way it is ultimately…Christ before us when our faith is shaken and our foundations trembling, asking if we are staying or leaving. No bright lights, no goose bumps, no soaring certainties, no explanations,…just silence waiting for a quiet "farewell" or "Lord, to whom shall we go?"

highlighted by me...

So Beautiful Seraphim!
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