Author Topic: New, struggling, fallen already  (Read 1468 times)

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Offline El-i-ana

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New, struggling, fallen already
« on: Wed Apr 11, 2018 - 00:41:22 »
Friends in Christ,
I'm new to this forum. I am fairly new as a believer as well. As a child, I always had a sense that God was speaking, but did not commit to my salvation nor knew anything of the Bible. As an adolescent of the Internet era, raised by a cosmopolitan liberal family, I fashionably rejected theism; I didn't know at the time that I was sinning, although I would soon discover how wrong I was. God touched me, though, and marked me as His own. I believe now. "I" am not an "I"; I am a mere vessel created by God. I seek salvation, and hope to find support in Christ here.

I am a 19 year old woman in her first year of college at a large state university in the United States, albeit one with a large Christian campus presence. I made my utmost to take advantage of moving to a new city as a student to establish new habits in faith, and disavow some of the older habits I acquired as a secular young person. The first trimester of school went swimmingly: I had great respect for the professors I would be working with for the next several years; due to my relative social isolation on account of being new, socializing and many other such temptations did not distract me. It is easy not to sin, to maintain purity and communion when God gives us these times.

A large stumbling block appeared before me second trimester. About 3 months ago now. I met a young man, 24, a recent university graduate and a much greater Christian than I. We were great friends for the time that we were: We work in the same field of research (about which we're both very passionate), have so many mutual interests, and enjoyed spending time together thoroughly. Unfortunately, I realized only three weeks, maybe one month, into our friendship that I was romantically attracted to him. I put a bit of effort into changing this perspective of him—I asked God that I would respect him as a friend, as an individual, as a professional indeed in our careers, but without that degree of intimacy. But asking God for the things that we want is not the same as putting one's faith in God. I did not release our friendship to God. I kept it for myself, and allowed Satan to touch it.

My friend was, it turns, attracted to me as well. About 6 weeks into our friendship, he met with me to discuss the inappropriateness of our attraction, and said that since I was not interested in marriage or settling down, that we should not date. I knew that this was God's will. For weeks further, I prayed that we would choose do what was truly good, but only sometimes—I still allowed slivers of hope for a romantic relationship to remain. All this pattern persisted: We set boundaries to reflect what was right, and then denied them. We tried for a good time to maintain a purely platonic and non-physical relationship, which doesn't sound that hard. It should not be. I chose otherwise. Humans are vessels that choose their contents.

My friend and I had sexual intercourse yesterday. Last night, after I was finished with classes and work for the day, we met to talk. He, being older and a greater believer than I—also, in some ways, unfortunately, with a greater history of sexual sin in his past—told me that we would never see each other again in this life, on Earth. He wished me a good life, offered me forgiveness, asked for mine. He said that he believed that I was a saved individual, and that I would be in Heaven someday. Then he left.

I am still reeling from my sin and from the loss I have caused through my own failing. My friend was a beautiful gift in my life, and there was much potential for good: not for me, for my pleasure of observation, but in him. We were able to appreciate each other as creations of God; I saw Christ act through him on many, many occasions in the short 3 months that we knew each other. I know, however, that I must not regret my sin because of what it has cost me, but because it is a sin against the Lord. I offer this monologue as a prayer for my friend's journey back to Christ, for my own, and for all people, especially the young and new believers, who defile what is holy with these same sins. Please keep me in your prayers during this difficult time for me. I will do the same for anyone struggling with these same issues!

Offline chosenone

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Re: New, struggling, fallen already
« Reply #1 on: Wed Apr 11, 2018 - 04:25:17 »
Hi El-i-ana
No sex outside marriage is one of those things that doesn't just happen, you have to work on it, be strong about it and be very determined.
For example, one boundary is not to spend any time alone in you room or home with a man. Only ever meet in a public place or in a group.  Make sure that you are both in complete agreement on this. If one is and one isnt that can cause trouble.

Having said that its not the unfortgiveable sin and God will pick you up, dust you off and put you back on your feet again. 

Also be very careful who you date. This young man who you descibe as a strong Christian has had sex many times it seems and has sex with you when you were only freinds. What does that say about him? It says that his moral values are weak. That he is happy to disobey God.
 I would suggest that you get tested for STD's as well, they are rife these days.

« Last Edit: Wed Apr 11, 2018 - 06:12:31 by chosenone »

Offline RB

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Re: New, struggling, fallen already
« Reply #2 on: Wed Apr 11, 2018 - 08:26:33 »
Please keep me in your prayers during this difficult time for me. I will do the same for anyone struggling with these same issues!
We shall indeed. You have committed a sin that is very natural to commit at your age. Do not beat yourself up over it. Young people should not allow themselves to be put into a vulnerable position where it is hard to overcome the temptation that presents itself~two young people ALONE looking for affections, is not a good situation to be in~ especially so when each other are attracted toward each other, that only adds fuel for heat that is present already.   

I can sympathize with you by the two facts: been there and done that, and had children and now grandchildren your age, who have the same problem as you are now describing~and human nature has not changed, God created that desire in us, and when it begins to be a problem, then IT IS TIME to seek for a husband or a wife, whatever the case may be.

Trust God and commit yourself to him to guide you in the way you should go, and if you do that with all of your heart, soul, and mind, the HE WILL guide you through these difficult times as a youth venturing into another phase of their life.

The Lord who is gracious above all be so to you dear precious soul. Mr. B

Offline El-i-ana

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Re: New, struggling, fallen already
« Reply #3 on: Wed Apr 11, 2018 - 09:00:46 »
Chosenone,
Thank you for your compassionate and firm response, especially so soon. Thank you for your commitment in guiding members of this forum in Jesus's salvation, and for your selflessness in doing so.

I certainly did not realize how much I would need to work on my purity. As a young and evidently arrogant person, I thought that I was doing well by just rejecting any sexual thoughts or urges I had in private, in my mind. This was something I struggled with a few years ago, as a teenager, but I thought that by overcoming it I would not sin. This false pride in my own ability to not sin reveals to me how far I have to go in God.

I am aware that he is morally and constitutionally weak now. On one hand, I do not want to miss him too much on account that he has been in many ways a negative influence on me. On the other, I long to still appreciate what is good in him. Do you think that the total termination of our friendship is for the best? I doubt that he will ever communicate with me willingly now, and if so, I don't think that he would look positively towards it. Is this really the only good and holy choice? Must I die to myself?


Edit:

Dear RB,
Thank you for sharing your experience as a human, as a dweller of this Earth. Yes, God is good, and in God I may trust during these times. He even offers comfort.
« Last Edit: Wed Apr 11, 2018 - 09:08:06 by El-i-ana »

Offline chosenone

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Re: New, struggling, fallen already
« Reply #4 on: Wed Apr 11, 2018 - 09:46:34 »
Chosenone,
Thank you for your compassionate and firm response, especially so soon. Thank you for your commitment in guiding members of this forum in Jesus's salvation, and for your selflessness in doing so.

I certainly did not realize how much I would need to work on my purity. As a young and evidently arrogant person, I thought that I was doing well by just rejecting any sexual thoughts or urges I had in private, in my mind. This was something I struggled with a few years ago, as a teenager, but I thought that by overcoming it I would not sin. This false pride in my own ability to not sin reveals to me how far I have to go in God.

I am aware that he is morally and constitutionally weak now. On one hand, I do not want to miss him too much on account that he has been in many ways a negative influence on me. On the other, I long to still appreciate what is good in him. Do you think that the total termination of our friendship is for the best? I doubt that he will ever communicate with me willingly now, and if so, I don't think that he would look positively towards it. Is this really the only good and holy choice? Must I die to myself?


Edit:

Dear RB,
Thank you for sharing your experience as a human, as a dweller of this Earth. Yes, God is good, and in God I may trust during these times. He even offers comfort.

No one is all bad or all good, and as you say he had good in him. I feel its wrong that he had sex with you and then abandoned you the very next day. How is that a godly thing to do?

The thing is that its not wrong to have romantic feelings for a man, after all unless you are wanting to remain single for good how else will you meet the right man? Don't be too hard on yourself on that.

It may be wise to stay away from him, I feel he took advantage of a new believer, claiming he was more mature when he clearly isn't. There are not too many men around who will wait for marriage now, even among Christians, and that's sad. 

Do you have any female Christians you are friends with who can be that good influence? Do you have a church you go to? Maybe there is a women's group there?

Honestly, we ALL make mistakes, this wont be the last you make by any means. God has forgiven you so don't beat yourself up about it.  The main thing is that you learn from it and how you can more effectively protect yourself the next time. The main thing is that you desire to follow Jesus Christ. You are His much loved and precious daughter. 

Offline El-i-ana

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Re: New, struggling, fallen already
« Reply #5 on: Fri Apr 13, 2018 - 01:05:55 »
My friend called me this afternoon. He said that he did it in a moment of weakness, although I thought, maybe wrongly, that it was better that he did than just to abandon me so quickly. We met in person and walked around in a very public place. I said some things, I think, that wounded him somewhat. I didn't mean to, but I didn't think enough before speaking either. I don't know where things are now. We parted when he was prompted to leave by regular obligations (one of his roommates needed help or something), on the conditions of "maybe I will see you around work, and if so, we will be cordial and friendly toward each other".

Honestly, I do regard our friendship seriously. I know that he does. He asked if I thought that if we really took our romantic relationship seriously, if it would lead to marriage. I said yes, probably. I mean that. I'm not sure, of course, because he already has sinned so greatly under my watch and generally been unstable.

What I have come to understand is that I have lived in secular culture too much for much of my life thus far, and that I need more support from other Christians, really just advice. I realized that I do not know the first thing about how to handle issues of dating and courtship as a Christian. I'm frankly confused. When I was a deist, prior to accepting Christ, and also prior to meeting my friend I was tending toward the Kantian view that all sexuality is degrading except for reproductive sex. By that Earthly standard, I've fallen; as a child of the Lord, I have fallen. I need to learn how to manage and prevent temptations, and also what Godly courtship, dating, close friendship with members of the opposite gender look like. I've never had any intimate relationship with a man that progressed this far before. Before, I always used to think it was enough to keep abstinence as my intention, but I didn't realize that there were complicated details.



Would anyone like to share their experiences managing temptations in friendships and dating relationships? Have you had any success at maintaining purity without entirely excising your loved one from your life? What do you do if you transgress in a friendship with a member of the opposite sex before adopting appropriate courtship behaviors?
« Last Edit: Sat Apr 14, 2018 - 01:46:33 by El-i-ana »

Offline El-i-ana

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Re: New, struggling, fallen already
« Reply #6 on: Fri Apr 13, 2018 - 01:09:20 »
How have you, as Christians, met your spouses? What was your courtship like?

Offline El-i-ana

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Re: New, struggling, fallen already
« Reply #7 on: Sun Apr 15, 2018 - 23:36:58 »
I am having a really hard time. Please pray for me.

 

     
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