Oh, yes.... - in answer to your last question.

and WELCOME to MS, gtr2000.

you will find - if you look back through earlier threads in this Spirituality section - and also elsewhere - that you are not alone. many of us have lots of troubling issues. as you read, you will start to recognize which members are sincere, active, practicing Christians, others that are believers in God but not very specific as far as other details of theri faith, some who ascribe to the "Higher Power" brand from the step programs, and others who have a variety of other types of spiritual beliefs - eastern, etc. There are also many who are very triggered by talk of God or religion because of their individual abuse experiences - some in church settings, etc.

so - good that you are introducing yourself - and asking your questions here - and i'm sure you'll get multiple responses. i'll write more personally later.

"Tell your heart that the fear of suffering is worse than the suffering itself... And that no heart has ever suffered when it goes in search of its dreams, because every second of the search is a second's encounter with God and with eternity." - Paulo Coelho