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Jade1612

My boyfriends beliefs

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Long story, sorry

I was raised in a Christian home my whole life. I gave my life to Jesus when I was about 5 years old (I don't remember exactly when but I do remember sitting with my mum on her bed as we prayed together) and I was baptised when I was 13. Unlike most girls I was friends with, I wasn't interested in boys. Ever. My mum, while not forbidding me from dating, had very firmly told me that in her opinion high school dating was pointless as the purpose of dating is to prepare you for marriage, but she insisted that what I did was up to me. I, being the good little Christian daughter, wholeheartedly believed that she was right and used to insist that I wouldn't date until after high school.

When I was in year 9 I started to become friends with a boy in my year. He was the first real non-female friend I'd ever had. In year 10 we had the same base class (meaning we were essentially in every class together). We also caught the same bus in the afternoons. We very quickly became best friends. And I naively believed that was all it was. Half way through year 11, around the time of my 16th birthday, I realised the horrible, wonderful truth - I really, really liked this boy. As more than a friend.

I tried to ignore my feelings for about a term. I told my best (girl) friend and no one else, not even my mum. This was the first crush I'd ever had and I did not to how to deal with or respond to these strange new feelings.

Then, in the last week of year 11, he asked me out. And I said yes. Standing at the end of my driveway, butterflies in my stomach and heart pounding in my ears my first crush became my first boyfriend and I, quite stupidly and naively in hindsight, said yes to him and didn't consider the consequences.

The consequences, of course, stemmed from the fact that this handsome, kind and incredibly sweet boy was not a Christian.

I stupidly said yes to him and yes to my own human emotions and desires and didn't consider what God would want until afterwards. I soon realised that dating someone with different beliefs could be very problematic.

Over the course of our relationship we have had many in depth discussions about our beliefs. I have taken him to youth group and church and have even given him a bible. He has always been willing to talk to me about these things and we have often stayed up late at night as I attempt to answer his many questions about God and Christianity and the bible to the best of my ability with as much patience as possible (he tends to go in circles with his questions at times).

While I did not enter this relationship under the impression that I could, should or would change him, I am realising more and more that if this relationship is going to work, he will need to become a Christian. But of course, he doesn't realise or understand that.

Believe me, I know how these kind of relationships typically end.

This Sunday will be our one year anniversary. And my stupidly stubborn and at times incredibly frustrating boyfriend, who I love, is still not a Christian anymore then he was a year ago. His main problem with God is that, like many in this world, he is struggling to accept God's authority. He struggles to understand why God should get to dictate right and wrong and why we should listen to Him on these matters - shouldn't we just get to decide for ourselves and do what we want so long as we don't hurt others?

I know that I can't change his beliefs, but I have tried to sow God's seed in him, and I know that's all I can really do. But he is a stubborn and fiercely independent young man and he doesn't like the idea of someone or something else telling him what he can and can't do (although I have explained the concept of free will to him in great detail complete with scriptural references)

I love this boy, and I know he loves me. But I know that unless something changes this relationship won't work. I also know that I cannot change my beliefs. Although I have not shown it well in the past, my relationship with God means more to me than my relationship with any human being.

I guess what I'm trying to ask in this incredibly long winded post is, what should I do? How do I help my boyfriend see the light, so to speak? And if he still can't accept Jesus - where do I go from there?

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I totally hear your struggle. (I'm also a teen, and I felt like I could totally relate to the first part of your story with what your mom told you lol)

 

Religion is such a big issue in relationships. I was "friends" with a guy once who had different beliefs than me, and in the end, that's all we could focus on and try to change about each other. It was really aggravating. One thing I've learned in these past few years of my life is that it is absolutely impossible to change someones mind or beliefs. Only God can do this. So I'm glad you get that too.

 

I know from hearing stories from my mom that she had a similar issue as you when she was young and still with my dad. He was an atheist and she was a new Christian, and he always shot down her beliefs and didn't want anything to do with Christianity. My mom said he used to say, "Life is s**t and then you die." and he was overall just a negative person. But for years she prayed for him and tried to convince him or show him who God was. Eventually after a few years of hardship, God did save my dad. One day my dad looked at my mom with tears in his eyes because he all of a sudden truly understood that God existed. To this day my dad is still a Christian and he works in the local church as a youthgroup pastor. (Unrelated but, my mom and dad got divorced when I was two, so their relationship didn't work out for other reasons.)

 

So for what I can say from this is..Like you said, we can't change people or their beliefs. We can talk to them for hours on end, we can show them things, we can pray for them. That's about it. It's ultimately up to you if you're patient enough to wait and find out if your boyfriend eventually gets saved. But it's up to God and your boyfriend for his salvation. It's his own journey. But God may have put you on his path to help him, you never know. And maybe that's for forever, or just a season.

 

I guess if I were you, I would wait it out a bit longer and feel out the situation and I would ask myself these questions. Are you willing to wait out for what could be years for him to finally see who God really is (if that even happens)? Does this guy seem like the guy you're meant to be with?

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Thank you for your reply, what you said has really helped me. I am willing to wait if that's what it will take for him to receive his salvation - I really do believe that this relationship could work out if that happens

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Oh the perpetual messy craze that is our emotions :P 

 

I know it's challenging with crazy emotions and hormones that are hard to control, but I recommend for the future to try and avoid entering into any sort of romantic relationship with non-believers as you're discovering it can be the source of much hurt. 

 

Prayer changes things. Pray, pray, and pray some more about the situation, for him, and for yourself. I've seen prayer change lives numerous times, don't doubt it's power, especially when your prayers aren't immediately answered. I've also heard so many testimonies about how someone is praying for God to change a love one, to no avail, then they realize that they need to be praying for God to change them- as hard as that is- instead of the loved one; and I realize that isn't necessarily accurate for a relationship with an unbeliever, but try to bare it in mind.

 

You mentioned that you can't change his beliefs. Just stop, Don't fall into that lie. I've changed multiple peoples' beliefs by talking with them; and I know that it isn't all me, that it's God working through me, and God working in their life. But you are God's tool, and the Holy Spirit is in you. Don't wait for some divine revelation with the clouds parting and God showing Himself to your boyfriend; God wants to work through you. Share the Gospel clearly and zealously with him with a passion which proves to him how much you know it to be true, and if you're not sure how to clearly share the Gospel feel free to ask, or check out these resources

 

And I love talking with people about free will, it's a topic that comes up a lot when I talk with people about God. It sounds like you've explained it to him, but if there's further questions that come up which you can't clearly answer, please state them here so we can help you- there's a lot of Biblically smart people here. Or you can always go back to Google with questions, but that can be tricky with so many unreliable sources. 

 

Wow this got longer than I was planning :P Anyways, if you have any questions or just want to talk, I'm always open. And when it comes to questions, don't be afraid to ask, I'm not one who can be easily offended. Thanks for being so open and honest, I know it can be challenging.

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I didn't mention this before, but my boyfriend was raised with catholic beliefs - sort of. His father comes from a catholic family and his grandfather especially is quite a devout Catholic,  he also went to a catholic primary school, so he already knew some of the basics (i.e. Christmas and Easter) and believed in God to an extent. So I've never really had to have had to have the "God is real" conversation with him

 

As I mentioned before, his main problem is with accepting God's authority and His right to decide what is morally right and wrong. He has always been fiercely independent and is also quite reluctant to change. I have tried to talk to him about it, but he, while respecting that my morals and faith are intertwined, is still adamant that people should get to decide for themselves.

 

He also struggles to accept that you have to be saved to go to heaven. This has to do with his family, particularly his younger brothers. Most of his family members are not Christian and he doesn't want to accept that this means that they can't go to heaven. He at one point even suggested that if his brothers can't go to heaven then he didn't want to go either (because nothing says family bonding like all being damned to hell together...) - essentially what this boils down to is that he is very family orientated and doesn't like the idea that they won't go to heaven unless they get saved, which at this stage is looking unlikely as they don't seem too receptive to it, but I can't say for sure because I honestly don't know them that well - they tend to clear off when I come over. And although he hasn't said as much, I also believe that he is scared of being judged by his non-Christian family members if he decides to accept Jesus.

 

Basically, he likes to cherry pick - he is only willing to accept the aspects of Christianity that fit in well with what he already believes and is reluctant to change anything else. This is not helped by my school. We go to an Anglican high school where we are required to attend one "Christian Studies" lesson each week. I use this term loosely because our teacher is also a cherry picker. Even more so than my boyfriend is. I often leave these lessons wondering what kind of bible my teacher reads, because it appears to be very different from any I've ever read. I usually spend the following lunch period texting my mum and ranting about my teacher and his ... interesting... opinions of Christianity. Mum often responds with James 3:1 and Matthew 12:36

 

 

Does anyone have any advice on how to respond to these issues in particular?

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Oh the perpetual messy craze that is our emotions :P

 

I know it's challenging with crazy emotions and hormones that are hard to control, but I recommend for the future to try and avoid entering into any sort of romantic relationship with non-believers as you're discovering it can be the source of much hurt. 

 

Prayer changes things. Pray, pray, and pray some more about the situation, for him, and for yourself. I've seen prayer change lives numerous times, don't doubt it's power, especially when your prayers aren't immediately answered. I've also heard so many testimonies about how someone is praying for God to change a love one, to no avail, then they realize that they need to be praying for God to change them- as hard as that is- instead of the loved one; and I realize that isn't necessarily accurate for a relationship with an unbeliever, but try to bare it in mind.

 

You mentioned that you can't change his beliefs. Just stop, Don't fall into that lie. I've changed multiple peoples' beliefs by talking with them; and I know that it isn't all me, that it's God working through me, and God working in their life. But you are God's tool, and the Holy Spirit is in you. Don't wait for some divine revelation with the clouds parting and God showing Himself to your boyfriend; God wants to work through you. Share the Gospel clearly and zealously with him with a passion which proves to him how much you know it to be true, and if you're not sure how to clearly share the Gospel feel free to ask, or check out these resources

 

And I love talking with people about free will, it's a topic that comes up a lot when I talk with people about God. It sounds like you've explained it to him, but if there's further questions that come up which you can't clearly answer, please state them here so we can help you- there's a lot of Biblically smart people here. Or you can always go back to Google with questions, but that can be tricky with so many unreliable sources. 

 

Wow this got longer than I was planning :P Anyways, if you have any questions or just want to talk, I'm always open. And when it comes to questions, don't be afraid to ask, I'm not one who can be easily offended. Thanks for being so open and honest, I know it can be challenging.

Umm..she will have to wait for him to get a revelation from God if he is meant to be saved. I'm pretty sure that's how it works (where the heck did this "Don't wait for some divine revelation with the clouds parting" come from? Lmao XD)  My baptist pastor also had a similar experience. For years and years he was an unbeliever and his wife prayed for him but it took 5 years. Ultimately it's up to God and the person. We don't have power to do crap, it's all up to God. To act like we have more authority/power than we actually do is pathetic. Of course we have the Holy spirit in us, but again. That's God. Not us. The Holy spirit works at His own pace. We cant use the Holy spirit as something to change people. The Holy spirit can use us to help speak into someones life (if He chooses to do so, and when the time is right.)

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I didn't mention this before, but my boyfriend was raised with catholic beliefs - sort of. His father comes from a catholic family and his grandfather especially is quite a devout Catholic,  he also went to a catholic primary school, so he already knew some of the basics (i.e. Christmas and Easter) and believed in God to an extent. So I've never really had to have had to have the "God is real" conversation with him

 

As I mentioned before, his main problem is with accepting God's authority and His right to decide what is morally right and wrong. He has always been fiercely independent and is also quite reluctant to change. I have tried to talk to him about it, but he, while respecting that my morals and faith are intertwined, is still adamant that people should get to decide for themselves.

 

He also struggles to accept that you have to be saved to go to heaven. This has to do with his family, particularly his younger brothers. Most of his family members are not Christian and he doesn't want to accept that this means that they can't go to heaven. He at one point even suggested that if his brothers can't go to heaven then he didn't want to go either (because nothing says family bonding like all being damned to hell together...) - essentially what this boils down to is that he is very family orientated and doesn't like the idea that they won't go to heaven unless they get saved, which at this stage is looking unlikely as they don't seem too receptive to it, but I can't say for sure because I honestly don't know them that well - they tend to clear off when I come over. And although he hasn't said as much, I also believe that he is scared of being judged by his non-Christian family members if he decides to accept Jesus.

 

Basically, he likes to cherry pick - he is only willing to accept the aspects of Christianity that fit in well with what he already believes and is reluctant to change anything else. This is not helped by my school. We go to an Anglican high school where we are required to attend one "Christian Studies" lesson each week. I use this term loosely because our teacher is also a cherry picker. Even more so than my boyfriend is. I often leave these lessons wondering what kind of bible my teacher reads, because it appears to be very different from any I've ever read. I usually spend the following lunch period texting my mum and ranting about my teacher and his ... interesting... opinions of Christianity. Mum often responds with James 3:1 and Matthew 12:36

 

 

Does anyone have any advice on how to respond to these issues in particular?

LOL at this XD --> (because nothing says family bonding like all being damned to hell together...)

 

I think at this point I would just tell him whats real. I would tell him that on this earth he is missing out on an amazing experience with the spiritual side of life, and that when the time comes to leave this earth, he won't get to go. And it's not just as easy as going into "non-existence" when he dies. There's going to be hell if not heaven, and that sucks.

About the "can't bring his family with" thing, I don't really know what to tell you to tell him. It's something that all of us Christ followers face. There's always going to be someone that won't come with us in the afterlife. I guess from what I've read, it's not going to matter to us once we're there. Everyone in heaven is going to be considered our brothers and sisters in Christ rather than, "mom, dad, aunt, uncle, etc etc." Our family on earth is something God put here with us to help us on our journey (and luckily sometimes we do get to see them in heaven).

 

Again, I believe only God can show him why cherry picking doesn't work. I also think that for some odd reason, I don't know why this happens and it's so aggravating, but like, humans have the tendency to argue/disagree just because they can?? It's so annoying. Just like that guy I was talking to that I mentioned earlier. I was like, "Um, I've heard your perspectives and listened to everything you said and considered it. So why aren't you doing that for my point of view?" He was sooooo stubborn!! >:| Like dude, can you just listen to me for once? Damnnn so aggravating. I totally feel you girl, it is so hard. That's why patience is key here :) It's going to take God, time, and life experience for him to learn/understand.

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