It is very easy for me to get excited about something and then give up after it gets hard. For instance, I would love to say that it is easy for me to read my Bible. It isn't, though. It takes a lot of effort on my part to stop what I'm doing, sit down, and spend some quality "you and me" time with God. There are dry spots when I feel like just giving up, but I try to keep going because I know that it is in those times that I'm drawing even closer to God.
Giving up is easy to do, though. Sometimes it's not just giving up on Bible time or morning Mass, though. Sometimes it's giving up on Church, or on the Catholic faith all together. Although this seems like a huge jump, it's not - the whole process is a slippery slope that is so easy to slide all the way down on. This is manifested in these facts:
October 2008, The Cardinal Newman Society published a comprehensive study of practices and beliefs of current and recent students at Catholic colleges and universities. The study, conducted by the reputable Washington, D.C., polling firm QEV Analytics, found that:
-Nearly 1 in 5 respondents knew another student who had or paid for an abortion.
-46% of current and recent students—and 50% of females—said they engaged in sex outside of marriage.
-84% said they had friends who engaged in premarital sex.
-60% agreed strongly or somewhat that abortion should be legal.
-60% agreed strongly or somewhat that premarital sex is not a sin.
-78% disagreed strongly or somewhat that using a condom to prevent pregnancy was a serious sin.
-57% agreed strongly or somewhat that same-sex “marriage” should be legal.
-57% said the experience of attending a Catholic college or university had no effect on their participation in Mass and the sacrament of reconciliation.
-54% of respondents said that their experience of attending a Catholic college or university had no effect on their support for the teachings of the Catholic Church.
-56% said their experience had no effect on their respect for the Pope and bishops.
See? It's pretty easy to give up on a faith that you have had for eighteen years. It's time to fall in love with our faith. It's time to make our faith our own - to make a commitment to stick with it through thick and thin. If Mother Teresa could have dry spells in her faith life, you probably will to.
The true test comes by what you do when you don't think you can hold on any longer. When you don't want to get up and go to Mass, or go to confession, or pray any more.
Saint Catherine of Sienna said, in a conversation with Christ:""Where were thou, my divine Spouse, while I lay in such an abandoned, frightful condition?" She heard a voice saying, "Daughter, I was in thy heart, fortifying thee by grace." Christ is right there beside you - all you have to do is turn back and run to Him.