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Sensitivity vs. Scrupulosity

Sensitivity vs. Scrupulosity

By:  Amazing Nation Guest Writer January 6, 2022
#AmazingNation, #Depression, #God, #Live, #Scrupulosity, #Winning

Anyone who’s struggled with scrupulosity, or at least experienced the idea of what it is, knows how crippling, exhausting and mentally draining it can be. In my own battle with scrupulous thoughts, I’ve faced a wealth of emotions, but the most challenging thing about my scrupulosity was its consuming nature. 

I was constantly assailed with the thought that I was in mortal sin, and every time I went to Mass to receive the Eucharist, I was terrified that I was receiving unworthily. The tiniest things would make me doubt myself and my ability to discern the state of my soul. Sometimes it felt like it would all just pile on top of me, and that I would go to hell immediately if I were to die. I would go to confession often, only to be right back there again with worries that I was in mortal sin. 

I began to resent my sensitivity. I wished that I could just be like other people, and be free to live, laugh, mess up, be forgiven, and move on without the intense fear gripping my heart through scrupulosity. The thoughts I would have made me hate myself more and more. I was filled with shame and fear and isolated my heart from others out of embarrassment. 

But slowly, through God’s mercy, things began to change for me. It started with one compassionate priest in confession, who told me “You are not defined by a thought”. This is a phrase I started to repeat over and over, and eventually it led me to greater freedom. It started with my identity - I needed to realize that my thoughts did not define me. God defined me. He is the one who proves me worthy, it is His power in my life that allows me to be free. Nothing I control does that. I don’t define myself by my thoughts, God defines me by his mercy. 

In this process I began to see the difference between scrupulosity and sensitivity. I believe it is important to define the difference between the two, because it leads to greater freedom and openness to the Spirit of God. 

Scrupulosity Condemns 

When we are being scrupulous, we are condemning. Our thoughts tell us that we are bad, unworthy, and can never be good enough for God. It feeds us lies that we must fear God, and he is waiting for us to mess up. It holds us back from being present to others, because we are so caught up in our worries and thoughts. We forget that we are loved and that Christ desires mercy for us, and therefore we have no room for Christ to pour his love into us. Condemnation is never of Christ. We don’t have the power to condemn ourselves. 

Sensitivity Convicts 

Sensitivity on the other hand, convicts us to mercy. It shows us where we need to grow, or how others need us. It is a response to the Holy Spirit, and a way for us to connect deeper with other human hearts that need to be seen and loved. This sensitivity to Sin and Suffering, is a great gift and grace. It shouldn’t be resented or confused with scrupulosity. Because our sensitivity from the Lord never condemns. It gently convicts us to change out of love for Christ and others. The smallest things that move our hearts, are often the areas that the Holy Spirit is convicting us to move in, in order for God’s ultimate plan for our life to be put into action. 

Have hope, my friends. I am grateful for my battle with scrupulosity, because it prepared my heart to be sensitive. I no longer struggle with condemning thoughts, because God has proved his faithfulness and his gentle mercy to me over and over. He is so proud of me, and he is so proud of you too. If we just sit with the truth that we are wanted, seen and known by God, his incredible voice of truth and clarity will seep into who we are, and give us the courage to be sensitive, not scrupulous.

About the Author Amazing Nation Guest WriterAmazing Nation Guest Writers have submitted their blogs to us in hopes of encouraging others who may have had similar life experiences. They want to share hope and wisdom with every person who read their blogs.  


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