"I sought but I didn’t find. Now what?"
I occasionally hear from people who say that “seek and ye shall find” didn’t work for them. They explain that they prayed, read the Bible, researched, asked Jesus to help them, opened their hearts and minds, etc. but didn’t end up any closer to belief. A commenter named Amy once summarized it eloquently in the comments to a post about doubt when she wrote:
Finding faith in 5 steps didn’t work for me [referring to this post], nor did finding faith in 20 steps. I sincerely, truly tried. I prayed. I asked others to pray for me. I sought humility. I went on not only a cynicism fast, but a complete media fasts more than once (no internet, no radio, no tv, no reading, no writing). I cried myself to sleep on more than one occasion, begging God to help me. I spoke to priests. I blogged. I attended Mass several days a week. I signed up for RCIA. I went to adoration. I read books. I went on retreat at a monastery…
I’m at the point now where I don’t even believe that God, if God exists, has any interaction with humans at all, and to me the question of God has become irrelevant, let alone Christianity. I assure you, it is not a place I wanted to end up, but I am coming to terms with it.
I had to smile when commenter Destry offered her own wry summary in response to this post:
Reaching out to Jesus feels like hearing that some guy likes you and wants to get to know you, but never calls. You sit by the phone, wondering what you did wrong.
First of all, a big thanks to Amy, Destry and everyone else who has offered perspectives like this. It takes courage to talk about this sort of thing, and I’m honored that you shared your experiences with us. I assure you all of my prayers, wherever your journey takes you.
Since this is a blog about conversion, I thought this would be a good subject to bring up. I’m going to write a post about it soon, but first wanted to offer a chance for others to share their thoughts: For those of you who are believers, what would you say to someone who says, “I sought, but I didn’t find”?