Hi True One. Sounds like you had quite a somatic response to your guilty feelings!
I would not be too concerned about that story of Ananias and Sapphira. They cheated, but were not repentant about it. It sounds like you're sorry, and you should express this to God, and vow to sin no more. You should also return what you have stolen, then you will have set things straight.
God forgives us even before we ask, but our asking opens us to accept it. Don't give up your ghost. Seek forgiveness from God and make restitution. The guilt will then be diminished.
True One, it's good of you and others to present yourselves as support for those undergoing these kinds of desolation experiences. What I hope you will believe is that it need not be a permanent state. Even the body and psyche can come to participate in the love and joy of Christ communicated by his Spirit.
We can know this joy and life even as we struggle to recover from the consequences of a sinful period, for it is a gift from God, and not anything we can produce through our efforts. I encourage you and others to be open to this possibility.
Recommend This For U Guys Suffering Like me.. This Might Help And Guide U On What To Do:
1. hell no not me: A Divine Encounter - Jean N. Tobe
hi. i think i lost the Holy Spirit just this year around the end of January of 2015 after going to a buddhist temple. i think the Holy Spirit left me after i entered into the temple i was trying to seek help with an issue i thought they could help me with. i had the Holy Spirit with me for about 2 and a half years since about february 2011 when i began my walk with Jesus. since committing that sin at the end of January 2015, i had said sorry and turned from it but so far haven't received him back. i've been praying for about an hour a day to be forgiven, and that my sins would be washed away and blotted out like David in Psalm 51. i'm thankful for all the posts on here because they give me hope that i might be fortunate enough to receive the Holy Spirit back even after i messed up like angela_o's testimony. i wonder like CVv how she was able to recieve the Holy Spirit back. i don't have the joy and fulfillment that i had before. i'm not able to talk to others about Jesus like i used to. and to top it off, my health is declining i'm not sure how much time i have left. thank you
oh btw, i think i committed willful sin like it says in Hebrews 10:26-29 and am not sure if there is any more sacrifice for sins i committed . i do hope i haven't lost my salvation for this sin. thank you again
Are you Catholic? Have you been to talk to your parish priest about this?
I second Derek's recommendation. If you aren't Catholic, then talk to your minister about it.
Note from some of the exchanges above that it may well be that you've entered a Dark Night or period of aridity rather than lost the Holy Spirit. After all, there's nothing particularly sinful about going to a Buddhist temple and consulting with Buddhists about a problem. But if you thought this was a sin and sincerely repented of it in your heart and have returned to Christian practice, there's no reason to suppose that God has rejected you.
Remember everyone: God is not a feeling! Sometimes we are closer to God when we are in aridity than when we are filled with emotional consolations. Aridity is an opportunity to exercise our faith and choose to love when it's not easy, and this is deeply formative. Jesus said, "blessed are they who believe without seeing" (John 20:29). "Seeing" can be understood here in terms of a felt sense of God's presence. Our belief must be based more on convictions about the truth of Christ than on any experience we might associate with his presence. Paradoxically, it often happens that an inner felt sense of God returns after we are content to live without it.
hi Derek. no i'm not a catholic. i'm a believer in the God of the bible, the Christian doctrine of the bible, i believe in Jesus Christ.
i thought this forum place was Christian, it surprised me to see people talking about catholic-related things but i figured it was coincidence. is this a catholic forum?
hi Phil. thank you for welcoming me. i've spoken to about 3 pastors about this already if that's what you mean by minister. i was hoping to seek help here because i don't see much information about losing and getting back the Holy Spirit except here. i'm not sure if it is a common thing and maybe that's why it isn't discussed much in the churches, i'm not sure though. maybe there's a church somewhere discussing this, but i don't know if any at the moment
i know my first message i said i think i lost the Holy Spirit, i noticed that he isn't in me from what i am experiencing if i can try to clarify
i'm happy to hear those on this forum and maybe elsewhere on the internet(which i haven't found yet) that i can relate to that have may have lost the Holy Spirit because they sinned, but God had mercy and they got the Holy Spirit again wow. i'm not happy about the sin part, i know that's not good
about me losing the Holy Spirit after entering the buddhist temple, i think it was because God had showed me it wasn't good to go there about 2 years ago or so, and i had this feeling not to go there. i think Jesus wanted me to stay focused on him and maybe to believe that he can do the impossible even through rough times even though i doubted he would do anything more for me after helping me so much, but i didn't listen eventually and thought it would be okay to go. i wasn't planning to leave my faith in Jesus, but my actions said otherwise i think. I turned away from God and Jesus thinking i could goto a buddhist to help me. maybe it is different with each believer, i do know that if God showed me this wasn't good then i should have listened which i didn't at the time, and here i am now talking about it
Yes, the forum is Christian in focus. You don't have to be Catholic to participate.
It sounds like you did indeed go against your conscience when you went to the Buddhist temple, and so that would be a sin. Of course, we know that God forgives sins, but also requires that we sincerely repent of the wrong we've done so this grace (forgiveness) can set us free. The reason Derek asked about talking to your parish priest was that Catholics have the Sacrament of Penance and Reconciliation to formally confess sins and receive reassurance of God's forgiveness, often with a penance recommended to express sorrow and strengthen us for the future. Protestant churches have different pathways, and it sounds like you have pursued that, but haven't shared what they've recommended.
Remember: no sin falls outside of the scope of God's forgiveness. Also, as I noted above, the Holy Spirit isn't a feeling. Something has shifted in your felt sense of God's presence, and the name given to this traditionally has been "desolation." I've mentioned this in above exchanges, so you might check that out, but here are links you might find helpful.
Since you seem to be a little cautious about Catholicism, I don't want to impose on you any typically "Catholic" teaching. But Protestants, as far as I know, have nothing against Church Fathers (particularly St. Augustine). Since the beginning it was believed by the Church that the Holy Spirit (and, in fact, the whole Trinity, because all the Persons act always together and we sometimes refer to one or another in a manner of speaking only) dwells in all those who believe in Jesus and fulfil his commandments (note what Jesus says in the gospel of John). By the baptism we receive this indwelling and this divine life as a gift and we can lose it only if we commit a mortal sin, that is, with full consciousness and freedom we act against God's law in matters of life and death. Only then the Trinity withdraws its transforming energy from our heart, but, of course, is still present in us as much as in every creature, still loves us and waits for us with her arms stretched, as a Father from the Prodigal Son parable. If we repent, the divine life immediately comes back.
So my first question would be, whether what you did, was actually a grave or mortal sin? People sin every day, even saints, and if they should "lose" the Holy Spirit every time, it would be quite strange thing. So only very clear rejection of God's love has that effect. Your sensitive conscience tells me that you are not a person willing to reject God with full consciousness by going to Buddhists.
My second issue is what Phil mentioned. We should not conflate the indwelling of the Trinity with our experiences of that indwelling. There was a Christian heresy in 4th century, especially in the Middle East, called the Messalians. They believed, among other things, that if the Holy Spirit is present in someone, this person must feel it emotionally and they tried to pray incessantly to keep up this feeling inside. They also believed that once the Holy Spirit is gone, the devil completely rules in the heart, so they were constantly in serious spiritual battle. However, Eastern Fathers and monks strongly resisted this movement. For example, a great ascetic and monk Diadochus of Photice, who lived in 5th century, emphasized (and it was in harmony with the belief of the Church in general) that in every believing person the Holy Spirit dwells, but in the hidden depths of his heart. Sometimes, the Spirit allows to experience himself in an almost tangible way, as light, love, and power, but this is not a normal state of a believer. This was later called mystical experience or infused contemplation in the West. The thing is that, as Diadochus teaches and others with him, it is normal that the presence of God in the soul is deeply hidden and his operations slip our awareness. Sometimes he withdraws on purpose, as Phil suggested, in order to teach us something (for example, how to let go of feelings and live on naked faith).
You certainly remember that Jesus before death cried out "God, my God, why have you forsaken me?" Probably he experienced some kind of spiritual abandonment, but no sane Christian would argue that Jesus "lost the Holy Spirit" when he felt abandoned by his Father, would he?
The Holy Spirit(Jesus(God)) left His Body(temple) so that it could die and be resurrected. Jesus allowed(left) His human, fleshly heart to doubt God so that His Body was able to die. Jesus cannot lose the Holy Spirit because He is Him. The flesh can.
God gave me a very painful and powerful repentance. I was immediately transformed. When I had the Spirit for a short time I had joy, no fear, no gloom, absolute faith, no automatic thoughts, could work without getting tired and any job was fun. Every time I was about to cross the road the light turned green. I "lost" the Holy Spirit by committing the same sin that I was repented of and by experimenting with (devil)weed.
God lets us taste His Kingdom then, unless the soil is good, we feel too good and invincible so the devil tempts us and we fall like Adam by disobeying God and following after the flesh, the world and the devil. Then we can see how hopeless, helpless, and sick we are without God.
Now about getting Him back I'm not sure. He goes where He wants and you cannot tell where He is coming from or where He is going.
Also once I read some buddhist text and had a demonic dream that same night.
Your first comment (on HS leaving the "flesh" of Jesus) seems to raise a lot of theological issues. E.g. what about Jesus' "human, fleshly heart"? Well, I'd not say that "Jesus" is different from His "flesh". Human person is one substance and also Jesus' is one substance/person, consisting of God/human (soul/body). So Jesus' body is as much a part of Him as his soul or divinity. That's the foundation of orthodox (post-Chalcedonian - 451 A.D.) Christianity. Well, if you separate Jesus' "flesh" from his Person, what about our salvation? We are saved precisely because he was made flesh, right? And the Church is his body: he said to St. Paul "Why are you persecuting ME?", when he was persecuting his Church. A deep union with the Church. So I'd nuance what you say about Jesus' body/flesh/human nature more.
Now about losing/getting back. I think what you describe is not so much a presence of the HS in your heart, but what in the Western Christianity is called a "consolation". There are periods in our spiritual life when everything goes easy, it's easy to be loving to others, to pray, we feel deep union with God, we fall into loving silence or words of praise come spontaneously to our mouths etc. And then we feel abandoned, on our own, sinful, weak, we cannot pray, everything is effortful etc. But the great saints and mystics always believed that we need those cycles, those periods, in order to grow in faith, hope and love. It doesn't mean that we lose God or his grace. We just experience it in a different way (sometimes it is referred to as "milk vs solid food" for example). So we need to distinguish between mortal sin which separates us from God and an experience of desolation and aridity which makes us FEEL separated but in fact often brings us closer to Him.
In fact, I'd say, RL, that when we feel "hopeless, helpless, and sick (...) without God", as you put it, can be a very deep experience of God's love, because we are more accessible to Him when we are humble, weak, like a little child, than when we feel that it is easy to be good and that there is a green light wherever we turn... Actually, I think that being stuck at a red light and waiting patiently and humbly for God, can be much more Godly than the excitement of being close to God. I'm not criticizing your experience of consolation - I've been there, so I can really relate to what you say. And I also know that the periods of suffering and abandonment are perhaps more fruitful. We live by Jesus' Cross, not by the Pentecost all the time.
And about "getting Him back".. well, I am sure. Read the parable of the Prodigal Son. He awaits us with open, loving arms, doesn't He?
Good response, Mt.
I'm going to close this thread now because we keep going over the same ground again and again. I agree that what most people are describing sounds like the loss of consolations, which isn't the same thing as losing the Holy Spirit. Being without the Spirit would be equivalent to being in Mortal Sin, and even then, I think the Spirit is at work to nudge us gently homeward.
A few closing links on the Holy Spirit:
Luke 11:14 - If you then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!
So, just ask, and repent of any sins you've committed. Don't equate the presence of the Spirit with a feeling, or energy, or anything tangible like that. It's much more evidenced in a willingness of love and serve, and especially to glorify Christ.
See also https://shalomplace.org/eve/forums/a/frm/f/18110765 which is a free online retreat/workshop on the Holy Spirit.
Anyone needing to discuss this kind of issue in person, check out http://shalomplace.com/direction/index.html We could meet for a short-term consultation or ongoing spiritual direction.
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