Shattering the Delusion

[This has proven to be the most difficult post yet for me to write. It started as a series of smaller posts that I have merged into a single, larger one in the hope that it will be more approachable and easier to follow. My non-Christian readers will likely find it of little value, because it is entirely religious in nature.]

The Delusion

Life isn’t fair.

For most of us, this is something we are “taught” while we are young. On a surface level, we know it to be true. But deep down inside, I think that many of us still harbor a belief that life is fair. That everything will turn out alright in the end.

Why?

Because we live in a wish fulfillment culture. A culture that says that dreams do come true. A culture that tells us, from an early age, that we can have our cake and eat it too.

How so? Think of all the life scripts that we hear about. Here is one:

Study hard in school, especially high school, so that you can get into a good college. Once you are in college, study hard some more so that you graduate with good grades. Then maybe you can get a job right away, or perhaps go to graduate school for an even more impressive degree. Perhaps during grad school if you go, or more likely a few years into the work force after graduating, you find a mate of roughly equivalent SMV whom you marry. Then you have two to three kids, live in a three to four bedroom house with two and a half baths, and get involved in the community in some minor way, such as PTA or the Rotary Club. Eventually the kids all grow up and follow the same pattern as you, giving you the freedom to take those trips that you couldn’t beforehand. Then the grand-kids show up, you retire and get the chance to enjoy life.

This kind of life script is peddled to many of us from an early age. And it is far from unique. There are others longer, and others shorter. Except for those coming from the most disadvantaged backgrounds, we all get something like this. It never occurs to us to think that maybe, just maybe, it won’t happen. That something will come along and interrupt it. We have a plan for our life that we are going to live… because that is just how things work. Right?

How are these life scripts anything but wishes and dreams which provide a façade of being grounded in reality? Consciously we may not think this, but our unconscious or sub-conscious selves do appreciate them for what they are. And these messages are everywhere. Television, books, movies, magazines… all these sources spout them. We hear them at home, at school and at church. Unless parents make a concerted effort to isolate their children from all aspects of mainstream culture, this message will seep through.

And the central, and hidden, subtext of these messages is that life is fair. That hard work always pays off. That those who deserve to win always do.

I know that many around these parts like to condemn the “entitlement culture” which seems especially prevalent in some circles, especially female ones. But I think that the rot which infects our culture runs much deeper than that. It is my belief that we, in our pride, our wealth and our security, have lost sight as a people of the fundamental truth that life isn’t fair.

Not all among us are so deluded. Reality has a way of cruelly teaching us otherwise. But even still, most of us are insulated from the kind of experiences which would impart that kind of lesson. Christians, despite numerous passages in Scripture indicating otherwise, are not immune to this disease.

And I am no exception.

God as a Matchmaker

Recently it has been bothering me whenever I see or hear someone say something along the lines of “I’m sure God has someone special set aside for you.” It was not always so; I have been the recipient of such statements before and will admit that for a while they were actually a comfort to me. But as time passed I grew uneasy with such statements, and wasn’t quite sure why.

Initially I thought that my unease was because such statements seemed awfully close to the idea of a “soul-mate.” As has been pointed out many times before on this blog and others, there is no such thing. Yet such sentiments are far from unheard of in some Christian circles. But after careful thought I understood that wasn’t the reason for my distrust of such statements.

Then I wondered if it didn’t make sense in light of free will. After all, couldn’t that “someone special” decide that they weren’t interested? The only way such a scheme could work would be if God knew what choices that person would make beforehand. That is hardly beyond God’s power, of course. Yet I had trouble with the idea of God taking on the role of Yenta. But that wasn’t what was troubling me either.

It was only while I was re-reading the Gospel of Luke recently that I realized the problem with those statements is that they evinced a hidden sentiment: that a special someone had to be out there for me because I deserved it. And the thing was, I believed this too. You see, because I was a good person, someone who always did the right thing, God was sure to reward me for all my good deeds. As I read the following passage I understand just how wrong I was:

“Will any one of you who has a servant[c] plowing or keeping sheep say to him when he has come in from the field, ‘Come at once and recline at table’? Will he not rather say to him, ‘Prepare supper for me, and dress properly,[d] and serve me while I eat and drink, and afterward you will eat and drink’? Does he thank the servant because he did what was commanded? 10 So you also, when you have done all that you were commanded, say, ‘We are unworthy servants;[e] we have only done what was our duty.’”

I am an unworthy servant. All I’ve done is perform my duty. Nothing more. In my mind I had turned God into some kind of cosmic Santa Claus; someone who would reward me for all of my good deeds. But there is nothing special about what I have done. All I was doing was what I was obligated to do all along. If that places me above many others, it only means that I fail less often. Hardly something worthy of distinction.

Now, Scripture does teach us that we will be rewarded for our actions… in Heaven. Not on Earth. Ostensibly I knew this, or at least, pretended like I knew it.  But deep down inside I must admit that part of me believed that I would receive earthly rewards as well.

An Unpaid Debt

As I reflected on these misunderstandings, I realized to my great shame that my errors were even greater than at first glance. It wasn’t simply that I believed God was going to reward me for being a “good boy,” I believed that God owed me for being a “good boy.” In effect I was telling God:

See what carrying out your Will has cost me? Now you owe me for all of that.

Oh, I wasn’t thinking that out loud. But it was etched into my heart. Motivated by my earlier epiphany, I looked back through all of the Gospels until I found this passage from Matthew:

23 “Therefore the kingdom of heaven may be compared to a king who wished to settle accounts with his servants.[g] 24 When he began to settle, one was brought to him who owed him ten thousand talents.[h] 25 And since he could not pay, his master ordered him to be sold, with his wife and children and all that he had, and payment to be made. 26 So the servant[i] fell on his knees, imploring him, ‘Have patience with me, and I will pay you everything.’ 27 And out of pity for him, the master of that servant released him and forgave him the debt. 28 But when that same servant went out, he found one of his fellow servants who owed him a hundred denarii,[j] and seizing him, he began to choke him, saying, ‘Pay what you owe.’ 29 So his fellow servant fell down and pleaded with him, ‘Have patience with me, and I will pay you.’ 30 He refused and went and put him in prison until he should pay the debt. 31 When his fellow servants saw what had taken place, they were greatly distressed, and they went and reported to their master all that had taken place. 32 Then his master summoned him and said to him, ‘You wicked servant! I forgave you all that debt because you pleaded with me. 33 And should not you have had mercy on your fellow servant, as I had mercy on you?’ 34 And in anger his master delivered him to the jailers,[k] until he should pay all his debt. 35 So also my heavenly Father will do to every one of you, if you do not forgive your brother from your heart.”

At that time a talent was worth something like 19 or 20 years’ worth of wages. Which means that the King forgave a servant who owed him close to 200, 000 years’ worth of wages. Translated into today’s money, that total amounts to billions of US dollars of debt. In short, a debt which the servant could never hope to repay.

Most who read this passage understand that we are the principal servant (with the great debt), and that our fellow men and women are the second servant (who owes roughly 100 days’ worth of wages). And they correctly interpret that this passage is about the importance of forgiving one another, for unless we forgive one another we won’t be forgiven by our Master in turn. But we often overlook that initial debt which we all owe to God: 10,000 talents. A debt that we can never hope to repay.

Which makes the problem with my mindset becomes obvious: God doesn’t owe me anything. I am the one who owes God, and my debt is one that I can never hope to repay.

Or rather, my debt was one that I could never hope to repay. Because it has already been paid in full.

Despite this unwarranted generosity, I still have inwardly acted as though it was God who owed me. Once I understood the depths of my error, I sat down and tried to discern how it was that I was led astray. In time, I realized that I lacked a spirit of sacrifice.

Take Up Your Cross

This discovery was one that I made on my own, but its significance was not something that I fully appreciated until I read this comment by Sunshine Mary:

…I had two choices at the end of my first date with my husband: put out or no second date. He didn’t directly say so, but it was understood. So I put out. I wanted to anyway, so it wasn’t like it was some traumatizing thing. But the fact that I wanted to was in conjunction to the fact that I had to do so if I wanted to continue seeing him. Understand?

So, I willingly became his concubine, like 80% of other women do with their men. And I (and they) enjoyed it, but I was very much wanting his commitment, too. My choices, again, were this:

– Put out immediately. Continue to see him. Have a slim hope that he will put a ring on it.

– Do not put out. Do not see him again. Have no hope that he will put a ring on it.

(Reminder: I was a lapsed Christian and he was an atheist, so two sexually-active Christians *might* have a slightly different script, but it will probably only be a matter of how long they wait to jump in bed together).

The right choice would have been the second one: do not put out, do not see him again, do not get a ring.

But…and here is where it gets tricky…suppose I had done that? Suppose I had continued doing that? I’d be 44 and single. I would also be righteous and blessed by God…but I’d probably have no husband. As it stands, I was unrighteous and I got the prize. I have a man who committed to me.

I included most of her comment to provide context, but the part in bold is what matters. What Sunshine Mary expresses here is an admission that she might have been confronted with a scenario that placed righteousness on one side, and getting what she wanted on the other. More than that, I think that her comment betrays fear on her part. A fear that she would have been required to sacrifice something of great value to her (a chance for a husband)  in order to serve God and keep His commands. I mention this not to excoriate her, but to provide an object lesson in how we all fear making sacrifices in order to serve God. This is a failing that I am just as guilty of as she.

While I never placed the idea of marriage ahead of serving God (I’ve always though that the former would be part of my efforts towards the latter), I never considered, much less acknowledged, the possibility that I might have to choose between the two. I can no longer put off that confrontation, but must instead face it head on.  Because now I cannot help but conclude that my efforts to get what I want, a chaste Christian bride, would be bolstered if I were to engage in sin. Not only do women not have the qualms that men do in terms of marrying an unchaste spouse, but pre-selection means that they actually find previously unchaste men more attractive (although not necessarily undesirable). And even that last part is debatable, because I cannot say I’ve ever met a Christian woman who has insisted that she would only marry a chaste Christian man. In addition, the experiences gained from sleeping with other women would improve my skills at handling the other sex, not to mention boost my confidence. Furthermore, just as Sunshine Mary’s strategy can work for women, a male strategy of sleeping with other women to marry the chaste Christian girl you want works too.

To say that this process has been difficult for me would be something of an understatement. But it shouldn’t have been. Its not like there is a dearth of scripture to remind Christians that sacrifice is necessary:

24 Then Jesus told his disciples, “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. 25 For whoever would save his life[a] will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will find it. 26 For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world and forfeits his soul? Or what shall a man give in return for his soul? 27 For the Son of Man is going to come with his angels in the glory of his Father, and then he will repay each person according to what he has done.

No, not in the slightest:

25 Now great crowds accompanied him, and he turned and said to them, 26 “If anyone comes to me and does not hate his own father and mother and wife and children and brothers and sisters, yes, and even his own life, he cannot be my disciple. 27 Whoever does not bear his own cross and come after me cannot be my disciple.

As I said earlier, I lacked a spirit of sacrifice. I suspect that the reason why is because I have never had to make any serious kind of sacrifice before as a result of my faith. It has caused me some minor inconveniences, yes. And has limited my circle of friends noticeably. But nothing truly life impacting. Because I have never really had to suffer for my faith, I have been able to maintain (at least until recently) that delusion I spoke of earlier: that life is fair. No longer.

The delusion has been shattered in my mind. I am finally starting to accept that my life may not go according to plan. That I might have to sacrifice what I want in order to follow the Lord. That I might not be able to have my cake, and eat it too.

This acceptance does not come easily. I will not lie, part of me is refusing to go along. My hamster has been spinning furiously on his wheel, trying to convince me that it won’t really come to that. You know, that. A lifetime of celibacy: no wife, no children, decades of loneliness. In a way the rodent is admirable. He is pulling out all the stops to keep the dream alive, to preserve a spark of hope.

But it is a false hope, because it is not grounded in God. No, I will put my trust in the Lord. That trust may not gain me anything in this world. In fact, it may cost me everything I want and care for. It is a reality that I will continue to struggle with. But what I lose in this world, I will gain in the next:

28 Jesus said to them, “Truly, I say to you, in the new world,[a] when the Son of Man will sit on his glorious throne, you who have followed me will also sit on twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel. 29 And everyone who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or children or lands, for my name’s sake, will receive a hundredfold[b] and will inherit eternal life.

There is nothing more to do at this point other than to take up my cross. I have everything to lose, and yet, everything to gain.

 

Update: David Taylor II has written an excellent companion piece to this post, titled Life: Is it Fair or Not? I highly recommend it.

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127 Comments

Filed under Christianity, Churchianity, Uncategorized

127 responses to “Shattering the Delusion

  1. earl

    “Once again, Christian girls get away with it, they get to cheat and win out in the end.
    Because forgiveness and mercy. I suppose it is no loss, because a Christian man is better off without a woman who sins strategically.”

    I suppose what makes it more difficult for a man to stomach is that they cheat and win via their sexuality…which is something we hold most dear. It’s not playing fair.

    I would translate it to me robbing people blindly but then repenting and using that money to build a successful business which benefits others and makes me rich. The fair thing would be to give that money back with interest..and the fair thing for these women is to not get married and go into the convent. But that usually isn’t reality.

    I for one have learned to not be jealous if that is their outcome. Besides if she sleeps with him…she’s going to have the thought in the back of her mind that he could sleep with other women anytime he wants.

  2. Elspeth

    Basically, some of these women cheated and won. And Elspeth essentially said the outcome was worth it, because she never desired another. Okayfine, but saying sin was “worth it” seems incompatible with repentance.

    No, Jack. You have read me all wrong. Yet again. Am I supposed to be sorry that I married my husband? Be one of those women who looks at her husband full of regret and misery? Drop the “I’m not haaaapy boom?”

    But I understand that my bucking the narrative rankles around these parts (even though I have paid in other ways for my sin).

    This is getting old.

  3. jack

    I don’t think you should be sorry. I’M sorry that I played the game the way I have.

    I think of the single mothers I know who had children out of wedlock. They have paid a price, but none of them wish their child had not been born.

    It is easier to get forgiveness than permission, and I am not being sarcastic.

    I do assert that saying it was “worth it” is not what any of us should say about our past sinful behavior, but maybe then we should not repent. If one knows what one wants, just go get it. Unapologetically. David did so, and so did many of the other “Bible heroes”.

    Playing by the assumed rules of Christian sexual morality might be a colossal blunder. No sarcasm intended at all.

    I have some lost time to make up for. I know one thing, if I meet a girl I think I might want to marry, I’m going to skip the ‘moral guy’ routine and get her into bed sooner rather than later.

    It works, and I give up.

  4. Elspeth

    I do assert that saying it was “worth it” is not what any of us should say about our past sinful behavior, but maybe then we should not repent.

    Repent simply means to turn away from a thing and not do it ever again.

    Here’s the deal. I’m not a young, fresh-faced woman. I’ve been married almost 20 years. But if I suddenly found myself alone (God forbid), I wouldn’t have a whole lot of trouble apiring up with someone else. It’s just true, and I don’t mean losers either.

    But I would never, ever do again what I did 21 years ago. It was wrong. I am sorry I sinned against God. It was unacceptable. That is repentance. Being thankful for my marriage is not the same thing as being unrepentant.

    Trust me, I know full well how jumbled this thing is when the man you are married to is the man you sinned with, and you still desperately love him. It would be much more clear cut if the sin was committed with someone else and SAM and I had done things the right way. That’s not what happened though. It happens that we stayed together and repented together.

    But your assertion that I am not repentant is just wrong, Jack.

  5. Jack, this statement says everything I need to know about you:
    I have some lost time to make up for. I know one thing, if I meet a girl I think I might want to marry, I’m going to skip the ‘moral guy’ routine and get her into bed sooner rather than later.

    It works, and I give up.

    Your “moral guy routine” was always that, a routine. It was never sincere. You never really took any of it to heart. The gate is narrow and the path hard, indeed.

    That same day Jesus went out of the house and sat beside the sea. 2 And great crowds gathered about him, so that he got into a boat and sat down. And the whole crowd stood on the beach. 3 And he told them many things in parables, saying: “A sower went out to sow. 4 And as he sowed, some seeds fell along the path, and the birds came and devoured them. 5 Other seeds fell on rocky ground, where they did not have much soil, and immediately they sprang up, since they had no depth of soil, 6 but when the sun rose they were scorched. And since they had no root, they withered away. 7 Other seeds fell among thorns, and the thorns grew up and choked them. 8 Other seeds fell on good soil and produced grain, some a hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty. 9 He who has ears, let him hear.”

    18 “Hear then the parable of the sower: 19 When anyone hears the word of the kingdom and does not understand it, the evil one comes and snatches away what has been sown in his heart. This is what was sown along the path. 20 As for what was sown on rocky ground, this is the one who hears the word and immediately receives it with joy, 21 yet he has no root in himself, but endures for a while, and when tribulation or persecution arises on account of the word, immediately he falls away.[b] 22 As for what was sown among thorns, this is the one who hears the word, but the cares of the world and the deceitfulness of riches choke the word, and it proves unfruitful. 23 As for what was sown on good soil, this is the one who hears the word and understands it. He indeed bears fruit and yields, in one case a hundredfold, in another sixty, and in another thirty.”

    (Matthew 13)
    Reflect on this carefully.

  6. ** “Seems like there was no rod of correction involved here.
    Basically, some of these women cheated and won. And Elspeth essentially said the outcome was worth it, because she never desired another. Okayfine, but saying sin was “worth it” seems incompatible with repentance.” **

    The truth is, Jack, it’s not our call to make what God requires of another for their sin. It’s really none of our business. There are outlines of proper church authority for dealing with these things in the church, and of course we have natural authority for some things, but all these things come from the Lord, and He is absolutely just and fair, even if men are not. God Himself has said, I’ll have mercy on whom I’ll have mercy, and I’ll have compassion on whom I’ll have compassion. Many people really truly “know not what they do.” Better to err on the side of mercy, and leave the judgment to God. By this I mean to not have a contemptuous “I’m better than you” attitude, and not the simple pointing out of sin without the moral outrage.

    Also, sin costs in the Kingdom — in the next life. We don’t know what rewards we are forfeiting by choosing not to be sanctified and serve the Lord. He does forgive, but to lose those rewards? Even though the prodigal was received back into his father’s house, he had no inheiritance. Not enough people live with eternity in mind, and it will cost them.

    Incidentally, I think you are confusing that when people say they are thankful for how things turned out, even though they sinned, they are actually grateful that God is able to work things out for good when we make a mess in our foolishness. Not that the sin brought about good, but actually that repentance + God’s grace turned things around. If any of those continued in sin, they would have a different testimony for sure. Do not be envious because He is generous (Matt 20:15). You may just find yourself in need of such generosity.

    ** “Once again, Christian girls get away with it, they get to cheat and win out in the end. Because forgiveness and mercy. I suppose it is no loss, because a Christian man is better off without a woman who sins strategically.” **

    I’m sorry, but you really must not believe the Lord when He says He is a just judge. If you think people can just cheat and get away with it, and God is not fair in His dealings, you are making a pretty big accusation against the Lord. Even though God does forgive and restore, that’s true, I would never, ever, not in a million years ever (by God’s grace), advocate that another choose sin. I’d be held accountable for that.

  7. jack

    If I had a dime for every time a kid in their 20s decided that they were qualified to preach a man 20 years their senior, well…

    I used to be just like you. The only difference was that I lacked the presumptive aspect to lecture older people on life lessons. Or to suggest that 20 years of sacrifice was a “routine”.

    Careful, young man. You may endure the long slow demise of your idealism given enough time. It’s easy to preach about things you have never had to endure. This is why old men make the best pastors – they no longer have their judgment clouded by youthful naivete.

    Amanda-
    I believe that God is a just judge. I have just come to the conclusion that He probably will not judge the way some of us think He will. You might think that I am desirous of seeing women in this situation “held accountable”, but really I don’t want that. I can’t bring myself to desire seeing a devout practicing Christian pay a penalty for something they have admitted is wrong, I am simply acknowledging that sometimes, sin ends up working out just fine in the end, despite some bumps along the path.

    Also, that the current system is set up in such a way that devout and humble Christian men lose out because the women have been led astray by our culture, even the Christian ones. Women have always craved dominant bad boy types, but at least in the old days they were more effectively prevented from sampling, and therefore becoming acclimated to alpha attention that they can only purchase through premarital sex.

    In a way, most women are alpha widows, even the virgins, because they have had their thinking rewired by the emotional and social porn of our current age.

    I personally know of at least three devout Christian virgins (a rarity, even in the Church) who ended up in long term relationships and marriage with men who are atheists. Men who are almost guaranteed to never become Christians.

    Again, enough with the moral-guy crap. I can find a million women who will tell me to hold to my principles, even as they repeatedly select men for themselves that are anything BUT the embodiment of those principles. If I find a woman I want to marry, I might as well make a sexual down payment on my intentions. It seems to be the only workable method left. And I have the three women I know and four or five female bloggers to thank for this revelation.

    I was wrong all along.

  8. jack

    Rollo says it best:

    What’s really funny is thinking that any conversation about having sex or not ever takes place. Beta chumps are characterized by their accommodating negotiated terms for sex; the Alphas women want to have sex with never need to.

    Alphas don’t contemplate if they should have sex, they just have sex. Betas confirm for women their Beta status when they make appeals to women’s reason in order to get laid – and this kills the vibe, so to speak, because an Alpha’ just gets it’. So, if a woman is having that conversation with a guy about whether they ought or ought not to get after it, her limbic understanding is that she’s dealing with a Beta, and therefore not someone she is organically aroused/attracted by.

    In short, if you have to discuss it, it’s already over. Alphas don’t think twice, and women love them for it.

  9. For anyone who has ever questioned if men have Hamsters as well, I offer Jack’s second to last comment as evidence that the male hamster does exist.

  10. So because society rewired everything and you have to fornicate to get into a chick’s mind…God’s laws are all of a sudden gone.

    I don’t think so.

    That sounds like beta behavior to me…catering to the whims of society and women. A feminist biggest threat is a guy that doesn’t worship the pussy anymore.

  11. jack

    You really have to learn to listen with your mind more open, and consider that your youthful perspective is coloring your ability to make appropriate judgements. Young people see black and white with a clearer delineation, and they often imagine clear borders where none exist.

    This is a natural thing to do, of course, because it functions as a kind of moral “rote” learning, which serves a purpose until higher levels of perception and understanding come, hence my comment about pastors being older.

    The young often think that older people are fools, the older people just chuckle because they remember thinking that way as well. I can’t be upset by it because I know that it is a natural human characteristic.

    I remain unconvinced that morality as you describe it actually meets the Biblical directive, despite the fact that it appears to. For instance, the majority of people do not steal. The vast majority do not murder. Everywhere you look, the general tendency is to at least partially live according to general Godly principles.

    Yet, with regard to sexual morality (even in the church) the near-inverse is the case. Now, perhaps sexual morality is not as serious as killing or stealing, yet I can’t help but being struck by the nearly universal non-adherence to it. A cultural phase? Maybe.

    By suggesting that I am attempting to rationalize premarital sex because I desire to commit it is to misinterpret my thinking. I do not want to marry a non-virgin, and I don’t want to have premarital sex. However, I am beginning to think that I may have to act against my own preferences if I decided I wanted marriage.

    I would be sorely tempted to suspect projection on the part of anyone who thinks I am rationalizing this in order to justify an action I intend to take. Trust me, I would have rationalized it years ago when I was far hornier, and the choices of women were better.

    For me, it would be more of a burning-the-house-down feeling. To discard a lifetime of sacrifice and principle would actually be very difficult to do. But do it I would if I found someone I wanted to marry.

    Rare is the Christian woman who cares about a man’s N-count (within reason). Oh, they SAY they do, but their choices prove otherwise.

  12. an observer

    love watching a slut enter the buyer’s remorse phase.

    Used to. No longer.

    A train wreck is still a waste of potential, no matter how much she ‘deserved’ it.

    Life is tough enough. Schaudenfreude is just something else to repent of.

  13. jack

    Of that I have no doubt. Although my schadenfreude almost never survives seeing real repentance.

    And a waste of potential indeed. Promiscuous women are complicit in the destruction of their own marriage value, and you are left with either a defrauded husband, or a man who can’t marry her because of the baggage.

    I had to watch one of the best women I ever dated ditch me and the commitment I offered to go back to whoring around with players. Not done drinking from the excitement fountain. “Just not ready yet”.

    I wish her a long and cathartic repentance.

  14. @jack – truth is truth, regardless of the age of the person preaching it.

    I think your talk about bedding a potential spouse as a way to marriage assumes makes one fundamentally flawed assumption – that there’s a causal link between bedding a potential partner, and a permanent happy relationship actually resulting from it.

    Second, I’ve read a lot of blog posts by writers outside of the faith, and one possible outcome of premarital sex is absolute disgust with your partner and/or yourself during or after the act, or she feels guilty and dumps you because of it. If you’re a PUA, you don’t give a damn anyway – if you’re not and you actually care about this woman, then deliberately doing something that’ll cause both yourself and your partner problems is hardly a loving thing to do.

    I would note that:
    1) we’re about the same age,
    2) I’m “still waiting”,
    3) I’d love to have the kind of marital relationship I’ve seen in the happily married couples I know,
    4) I’m pretty content to’ve avoided the nightmares and pain I’ve seen not-so-happy couples’ve experienced – including that of one couple that looked pretty good from where I was watching for over a decade before things went “boom”.

    Marriage is probably not going to happen for me, and kids certainly won’t. I regret that that’s how things have worked out as I love kids and teaching kids things. I also accept that I’ve been used of God to accomplish a lot in this world that I wouldn’t have been able to take on were I occupied with a wife and kids, and I trust that He’s used me in this world in ways I’ll never know – which is ok with me because He knows, and that’s all that’s important.

    I’d encourage you to do the same.

  15. I had to watch one of the best women I ever dated ditch me and the commitment I offered to go back to whoring around with players.

    If she “went back to” whoring around with players and was promiscuous before your dated her – she wasn’t a catch in the first place.

    Trust me, she did you a favor. There are things worse in this world than being single, and being hooked up with a tingle-junky is one of them.

  16. jack

    I’m sure. The story does reinforce the idea that there is no point in trying to reform a former slut. They are damaged forever.
    Saved by grace? Of course. Forgiven? Absolutely. Old things gone and a new creation? Yep.

    But the baggage is not so easily shed. I know I’m a creep for saying this, but slut-tears are like gold to me. I am so very, very thirsty to see their pain and suffering for the damage they have caused. It is hard to stay quenched on the admittedly sparse supply of slut-tears at present, but every now and then I read an article or blog post that gives me a momentary taste.

    UnChristian of me? Yep.

  17. UnChristian of me? Yep.

    You’re still in pain, and want to see others show the pain you’re feeling. (BTDT myself).

    Once that pain’s healed and you’ve found a place of solace, you’ll be able to feel a sad compassion for these sluts instead of treasuring their pain.

  18. jack

    I thought that was what I was saying.

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  20. Maureen

    Donal,

    I realize i am late to this thread (and a new commenter…i have been lurking on SD, SSM and Elspeth’s blog for a while now, but only just starting to dip my toes into commenting. I found my way here, from there, and am glad i did.)

    You are right to seek acceptance for what God wills for your life. And it is possible that His will may not match up with what you desire. But do not give up hope. I’m not sure how old you are. But I spent much of my twenties in black despair, because I couldn’t find someone. Not “the one”…but someone who shared my values and commitment to God and his Church. But not being married meant that i could devote myself to caring for my ill father, and help support my disabled brother. Then those burdens were lifted from me. I met my fiance when I was 33…beyond marriagable age according to many around these parts 🙂 And it happened through a series of events that I would never have predicted…or ever planned for. You are single for a reason…and there is no reason to believe it will always be so.

    The “manosphere” and affiliated sites have taught me a lot over the last year, but sometimes they also preach a pessimism that is not warranted. Hold fast to your faith. And be open to God’s will…whatever it is. My fiance wouldn’t have met the criteria on most typical women’s “Husband List” (nor would I have fit the criteria for some “ideal” wife.) But there is no doubt that he saved me, as I did him…through Christ, of course.

    I’ll pray for you…that you find the one you are looking for, but also that whatever the outcome, your will will match His and you will be blessed with peace.

    Maureen

  21. jack

    Maureen-
    I am certainly one of the manosphere’s most vociferous and cold hearted commenters, but I would not make a single negative judgment about someone in your situation. It sounds like you have done the best you can with the situation you are in. Age 33 is not too old either. The reason some people would say so is if a woman has dallied around irresponsibly.

    Good women have paid as high as price as good men, in many cases.

  22. @ Maureen

    Thank you for giving your story. I’m glad to hear that things have worked out for you. May you have a blessed marriage and future.

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