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God did not leave me alone


Keeping premarital purity has taught me respect for women and self-control. It gave my wife-to-be a sense of security with me, because in difficult moments I could protect her from myself and from herself.

God did not leave me alone

Each of us has been endowed with free will, and it depends on us whether we choose life with Jesus or live as if He did not exist, ignoring His commands.

My wife and I come from Catholic homes where faith was practised every day. However, there comes time in the life of every young person when they have to decide whether the values instilled in them in childhood are important to them and whether they will continue to keep them intentionally or not.

I remember exactly the moment of the evening Eucharist on the same day, when I received Holy Communion after a long break. It was a beautiful thing!

In my wife’s life, the time for such a decision was high school, when she joined the Movement of Pure Hearts. Her faith grew in this particular community. Premarital purity was a great value for her, and she always wanted to keep her purity until marriage. In my case, it was different. As early as primary school, I became involved in pornography, and since then my life fell more and more into darkness. Sin causes shame and fear, and for that reason I sought solitude, becoming taciturn and withdrawn.

The period of technical high school and maturing to adulthood was a time of more bad choices in my life. Then an avalanche of misfortunes commenced. I lost my driving license and had big health problems: I suffered from stomach aches, constant drowsiness, fatigue and a huge paralysing fear, because I did not know what was really wrong with me. I spent a lot of money on various medical tests and doctors, but no one was able to help me. I was afraid that I would not be able to create a normal family. I remained in such a state of body and spirit for six years. The year 2012 was a blessed year for me, when, after much encouragement from my friends and family, I went to a summer retreat of the Movement of Pure Hearts in Gródek. Initially, I rebelled a lot, and by the third day I wanted to go home. Then there was a breakthrough. One of the leaders asked me the question: “Peter, if now, on the way back home, you had an accident and died, where would you find yourself — in heaven or in hell?” At that point, I did a quick examination of my conscience and found that, unfortunately, the second reality would probably be my share. In short, I got really scared, all the more so because I still had a vivid memory of an incident which had taken place on my way to the retreat, when I miraculously escaped death. From that moment on, I started to listen carefully to the conference lectures; I calmed down and carefully prepared for a general confession from my whole life. At the same time, my sister asked the retreat participants to pray for me to stay till the end and for my life to change. I went to the sacrament of reconciliation, confessing my sins with sorrow. I entrusted my past to the mercy of God. I remember exactly the moment of the evening Eucharist on the same day, when I received Holy Communion after a long break. It was a beautiful thing!

When I returned home, I realised that I was healed from my addiction to pornography, masturbation and vulgar language. Also, my earlier aggression against holy objects disappeared. My thinking changed radically. Keeping in mind the conditions of a good confession, I wanted to make amends for the wrongs I had done. It was not at all easy or enjoyable. I did not know what legal consequences it might bring, but I trusted that He who had already forgiven my sins would not leave me alone. The most difficult experience for me was self-incrimination and confession directly in front of my former employer that I had robbed his company. I also needed to pay back a large amount of money. I was treated very gently, with understanding and love, for which I am very thankful to that person.

I am aware that conversion is an ongoing process, during which faith and knowledge need to be continuously deepened, in order for us to understand more consciously and fully the meaning of our religion. With time, through regular reading of the Scripture, daily Eucharist and catechesis, I began to see what sin was and what it was not. Jesus heals in His own individual way; with the precision of a surgeon, He removes dead heart tissues and cares for the healthy ones.

Less than three months later, I went to another MPH retreat in Częstochowa, and there I met Marysia. My wife recalls: “It was the first retreat when I did not want to focus on looking around for a candidate for a husband, as is often the case with many girls during these retreats. I decided to focus entirely on meeting with God and deepening my relationship with Him. It happened that I came in late into the dining room, after the dinner had already started. The only free place was next to Piotrek. When I first saw him, a thought went through my mind: ‘I’d like him to be my husband’, but I immediately stifled it.” This was the beginning of our journey together. After a year of going out, I proposed to Marysia in the Tatra Mountains, on top of the Kasprowy, because I knew that she liked the mountains. The period of our engagement was full of beautiful and wonderful moments, but it also wasn’t lacking in tests of purity, faithfulness and patience. Long talks, walks, trips, retreats, prayers, Masses, adorations — all these made up the foundation for our love.

After more than a year of engagement, we returned to Częstochowa, where I had met Marysia, to entrust our whole future life to the Blessed Virgin. It was there that we exchanged our vows of love, loyalty and honesty in marriage. It was an amazing, long-awaited day full of joy. We shared our happiness with family and people from the community who supported us on that day and later on. It is a beautiful experience — to spend this wonderful day with people who share the same values.

Conversion is an ongoing process, during which faith and knowledge need to be continuously deepened, in order for us to understand more consciously and fully the meaning of our religion

From the perspective of over a year of marriage, I can confidently say that remaining pure till the wedding day has paid off and brings a lot of fruit. The road of purity which we took was not easy, but it was beautiful, because everything that we have to work for has greater value in our eyes, and we appreciate it more. Keeping premarital purity has taught me respect for women and self-control. It gave my wife-to-be a sense of security with me, because in difficult moments I could protect her from myself and from herself. Purity teaches creativity, so the time spent together is filled with the pursuit of various ideas, meetings with friends and the development of interests. Do not be bored, because then you are exposed to various temptations. Spending time actively during our engagement has resulted in our spending time in very interesting ways, even now, despite our many responsibilities. Purity also gave us the confidence that our child would be conceived out of love, without fear, with the blessing of God — and that’s what happened. Our son Ignatius was born on time, with the help of a wonderful midwife, on 10 July, at the hour of God’s mercy. It is a visible sign for us to whom we owe everything. Now we are learning how to build relationships with each other and the Lord God as parents. The child has brought us a lot of joy, but also responsibilities. Fortunately, in the sacrament of marriage, we have been given all the necessary gifts to fulfil our duties conscientiously, so we look to the future with optimism.

Piotr





Source: https://loamagazine.org/archive/2016/2016-37/god-did-not-leave-me-alone



The article was published with the permission from "Love One Another!" in September 2020.




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