A radio listener calls into the Busted Halo Show in need of some Fatherly Advice from Father Dave. He explains: “I recently tried to join the United States Navy Reserve… I was going through a very elongated medical requirement process, [as] I had a history of ADHD and tics, but I was shooting for the moon on this. My heart was so set on it, and I got into such good physical shape. I dropped nearly 80 pounds … [But] I just learned last Friday that I got disqualified after trying to join for two and a half years. So, my heart and mind have been bouncing left and right [about] what to think and what to do … And, to be honest, Father, I was really angry at God. I was very distraught, and at one point I did start to cry a little bit, but my mom helped me talk through it. I just don’t know how to carry on my faith very well. I’m just sort of going through the motions right now.”
Father Dave asks the caller a question. “You said a moment ago that you were angry at God. How did that play out? I’ll tell you why I ask that. Because I think sometimes we get a subtle message as Catholics that we should never ever [allow ourselves to become angry with God], and that if we feel a little inkling of that, we should suppress that. And quite honestly, I see in the Scriptures, which is what God gives to us as his Word, his revelation about who he is and who we’re supposed to be. I see examples where people express their anger at God. If you look at the psalms, a good third of them are what we call ‘lament psalms,’ and they’re people that have been through situations maybe similar to yours, maybe not as bad, maybe worse, and they essentially [shake] their fists and kind of have it out with God. And God doesn’t give it like a nice little Disney happy ending. Essentially to me that says that when we are experiencing some [kind of hardship], that we should express it.”
Father Dave reminds the caller that our relationship with God is a relationship, and that like a relationship we have with another person, it may have ups and downs, and there may be times when we feel like we’re just going through the motions.
“Sometimes we think that [because we’re angry at God, it means we] don’t have faith, or we’re not really praying. Well, it might feel like going through the motions, but that is sometimes what actually strengthens and grows the relationship.”
Lastly, Father Dave encourages the caller not only to allow himself the time to mourn this lost opportunity in the Naval Reserve but also to view the steps he took to get healthy and get into good physical shape as positive, instead of feeling like he just wasted all of his time. To help comfort him, Father Dave suggests the caller read Psalm 13 and Psalm 88, which both express anguish and feeling distant from God. (Original Air 05-03-17)