Rejected by the Father

by | Jun 12, 2024 | Church, Liturgy, Prayer, Spirituality

“At the Incarnation Jesus became like us in all things except sin. But at the time of the Passion, He became sin. – He took on ours sins and that was why He was rejected by the Father.” ~ Letters of St. Mother Teresa of Calcutta.

In faith when we feel rejected we enter into what is called spiritual darkness.  Spiritual darkness is something we all experience at one time or another. We go to Mass, see the art, hear the music, smell the incense, and feel nothing. Maybe we cannot go to Mass, like during lockdowns, and fall into spiritual despair. It’s a terrible feeling, that God is too far away to reach.

Sometimes when we’re in the car, my son drops his book or truck. I have to twist around in the passenger’s seat, sometimes hurt my shoulder to get his toy back to him. When we have to work really hard to reach something, it often feels more peaceful to let it go.

Faith is not an emotional experience.

St. Mother Teresa is renowned for her perseverance through spiritual darkness. In her letter to the Sisters of Charity quoted above, she describes the phenomenon of Christ feeling abandoned. To live in sin is to live rejected by the father, since sin is abandonment of God. God loves us, but He cannot love our sin. He cannot love our abandonment of Him, because He made us to be with Him.

Mother Teresa goes on to explain that living to work for God means uniting ourselves to Christ’s passion. Whether a consecration religious, a faithful parent, or a serving layman, we are called to live in union with Christ. The deeper we enter that union, the more we take on the responsibility of sin. The result for many great saints is the emotional rejection of the Father.

That’s why faith is not and cannot be an emotional experience. Mass is designed to engage our human senses, to work with our nature to deeper our relationship with God. But our human senses cannot be our only unity to the Lord. We cannot rely on emotional experiences equally our relationship with God. Mass and prayer cannot be solely emotional experiences. When we try to make them such, we plunge deeper into spiritual darkness. We reach for the toy, looking for something we can’t always grab, until we give up.

Rejected by the Father.

If you are experiences spiritual darkness, ask yourself why? Is there a sin that needs to be brought to confession? Could the rejection you feel stem from a genuine place of separation from God? Or, are you taking on a cross to unite your suffering to Jesus?

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Michelle C. Martin

Michelle graduated from Texas Tech University with her husband, Joshua, in May 2021 and married him in June on the Solemnity of the Sacred Heart of Jesus. She has a degree in Communication Studies and has loved growing in knowledge of healthy and authentic relationships during her time in college and adulthood. Michelle and Joshua currently reside in Lubbock, TX where he works as an architect and she loves life as a stay-at-home wife and mother to their children, Peter and Cecilia.

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