I see that you are Church of Christ. I don't know much about the Church of Christ.† I was raised Baptist and for the last ten years I have been in the Pentecostal faith.† Of course, I love all my brothers and sisters in the Lord.†
My story is a unique one, all that I share it with can't give me a satisfying answer, and I say satisfying with humility. Some of the details that I will provide only has only been known by me, God and the enemy.†
I was shy and timid growing up. I had very few friends, and I guess I could say that I was not one of the "cool" kids. When I became a teenager I started becoming interested in girls. I had a few crushes as a young guy, but my shyness caused me to not open up and talk to girls; hence, I have never dated in school.†
As I grew closer to God, God really filled me with His Spirit that I became bolder.† God gave me visions about how he wanted to use me. God called me to the ministry. I was so on fire, but I still had trouble making friends, and, yes, finding a female companion that was just as on fire for the things of God.
I moved to a new state to finish my schooling. I prayed continuously that God would let me meet a special lady. I am at this time in my early twenties.† I went to a new Baptist church and met almost immediately a wonderful girl who loved God as well.† Now after observing her ways and how she conducted herself in the church I became intrigued and began to find interest in her. My faith was silly and neive I put silly fleeces out saying God if this is the one you want for me then let this or that take place. So all along it seemed that God was pointing to this girl as being the "one," but my old fears about approaching a woman came up and bit me. So after a few months of struggling, I sensed that her heart grew cold.† I made up my mind that I was going to just drop it and move on.
I went to a Pentecostal church. The second service I attended, the preacher came and prophesied over me, I didn't know this man nor anyone there, and yet this guy prayed over me and said that God or I -- he was praying in the first person, "I," as if God was talking to me Himself -- said that "There was a person that I†cared a lot about and that their heart had become cold and calloused toward me, but that I will tender that heart and they will know that I am the Lord God." He went on to say that "I know the things that were done and the things that were said," and also, "I have heard your cries" and it got sketchy from there, but he ended with "I know its moving slow, but this thing is going to take time."
I was on cloud nine, to say the least. Here I was a 21 year old old backward farm boy who never had a date in his life and received a promise out of this world. I held onto this promise for 3 1/2 years. Nothing could change my mind what I received.† God was going touch this girl's heart and it was the one that God wanted for me! Or at least that I was led to believe.†
I moved away to a different city and resumed my life during this time.†I was attending a church in my new city. One night I had a nightmare.†It involved my driving down the road and a young lady was beside me who was not the one that I met years prior.†About a week later, the pastor of my church called me and wanted to talk to me in private. Now, he knew about my "prophecy" from a few years prior.† He told me that he felt that God had someone else for me. In a dream he had about me, I was looking in a mirror trying to change the way I looked and kept asking God where my wife was at?
I was upset and didn't receive it.† Well, a week after that I found out that the girl that I was prophesied about was married with two kids.†I was a shell of a man. I felt betrayed, lied to, and disillusioned. I felt God let me down, felt that God changed His mind toward me. I never knew much about prophecy. I believe in the gifts of the Spirit, but I was just ignorant and young in the Lord back then. I did not know why I got a false prophecy.
Anyway, since then I have been in an up and down walk with the Lord. I still have yet to have a girlfriend. I tried various dating programs.†I am polite, friendly, entreating, and humble, but deep down I just feel that I am wasting my time. When I share with them my love for God and my desire for ministry they run.†
During this time I went through depression.†My depression compounded my loneliness. I found that church was, for the most part a facade, so I was not getting help there. Preachers, I saw, were mere men who were flawed and at times phony. My relationship with the Lord suffered as I struggled to believe God for anything, including a wife! Yet, I tried to preach, and when I did, I used the pulpit to attack instead of uplift and build up.†
Here is the dark part that I am ashamed to admit.†I was 27, single, and a virgin.† I was so depressed that I gave in to temptation and called an escort service. I paid for sex.† I wanted to have female companionship so much all my life that I crossed that line.† I had never even been kissed before.
After that I was even more depressed, lonely and disgusted.† For several years I gave in, called escorts using protection of course, went to strip clubs, and watched porn. A few times I just paid an escort to take her to dinner or go hang out and talk -- isn't that pathetic? I hated myself.
I told myself dozens of times I have faithfully prayed to God for Him to help me and bring someone into my life since I was 15, to open a woman's heart and eyes to see me. Can you imagine how I felt that "kids" who I worked with in my early twenties in a children's ministry are now of age and getting married themselves? I have now prayed for God to make me suitable and presentable to one of His daughters.†
One of the reasons I can't share this vocally to anyone is that I fear that 'self righteousness" will rise up in the so called "counselor" and I would be rebuked, lectured, or condemned. I know that what happened to me is no excuse to go out and sin! But all I ask is put oneself in my shoes and see how and why I failed.†Now I have great understanding and compassion toward those ensnared in sin.†
Today I am still single, still crying out for God to help me.† I feel God's love for me and can start to feel His forgiveness.† I still struggle with porn from time to time. I am still fighting off the urge to call an escort.†I have tried to put the shattered pieces back together.†Only God can do that.
My question is basically this: Why did all this happen? Why did it seem that God introduced me to someone only to know beforehand that it wouldn't work out? It's funny; back then there was a guy who was always hanging around her and anytime she and I got together to talk and get to know each other, he'd come and break it up. Now he and she are married. :) Go figure.†How can I really trust and believe in the Lord again?†Have I missed out on God's best?† Can God restore me and cleanse me of this dark and terrible season I have been in,†and can God restore my purity, and my conscience again?
I have prayed, God fill this need until you bring your best into my life.†Can God restore His call upon my life? Can God really wash away all my sins?† Do you as a Christian now think less of me because of my ugliness?† Will you receive me as a brother in the Lord or walk past me like a Pharisee? (Don't take it personal, I don't know you, just making a point.)† God will you forgive me, and let me be your child again?†
Just to let you know.†I am over the girl of ten years ago. It's just that I struggle to let go how this lie happen to me and what I need to do to not let this type of lie happen to me again.
As a brief, overly simple introduction, members of the churches of Christ are Christians dedicated to following Christ and his teachings in all aspects of their lives. We reject denominationalism (I Corinthians 1:10-13), we understand that God gave just one message to His people (Ephesians 4:4-6) which was recorded as our New Testament (Jude 3). We accept that God confirmed that message with miracles (Hebrews 2:3-4), but now that it has been delivered and confirmed, the miraculous gifts came to an end (I Corinthians 13:8-13). I know this is vastly different from what you've always accepted, but my duty is not to tell you what you want to hear (II Timothy 4:1-4), but teach the message of God (I Peter 4:11).
One of the methods Satan uses to snare people is to make false promises to them. "You are of your father the devil, and the desires of your father you want to do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own resources, for he is a liar and the father of it" (John 8:44). From his viewpoint, it is even better when the one lied to thinks the promises are coming from God because when the promises fail, then the person blames God. "For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into apostles of Christ. And no wonder! For Satan himself transforms himself into an angel of light. Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also transform themselves into ministers of righteousness, whose end will be according to their works" (II Corinthians 11:13-15).
God warns us how to detect these imposters (Matthew 7:15-23; II Peter 2, and many other passages), but the sad reality is that what is being offered is exactly what these people want. Thus, they never look below the surface. "The coming of the lawless one is according to the working of Satan, with all power, signs, and lying wonders, and with all unrighteous deception among those who perish, because they did not receive the love of the truth, that they might be saved" (II Thessalonians 2:9-10).
Let's take your example. You were given a "prophesy," but nothing came along with it -- no true miracle, sign, or wonder to confirm whether the man was speaking on behalf of God or not. Yet, what was told to you was exactly what you wanted so badly that you never thought to question it. In fact, in most Pentecostal religions you are strongly told that to question such things would be a lack of faith and that God would not grant you your desire. How different from the God of the Bible! ""Present your case," says the LORD. "Bring forth your strong reasons," says the King of Jacob. "Let them bring forth and show us what will happen; Let them show the former things, what they were, That we may consider them, And know the latter end of them; Or declare to us things to come. Show the things that are to come hereafter, That we may know that you are gods; Yes, do good or do evil, That we may be dismayed and see it together. Indeed you are nothing, And your work is nothing; He who chooses you is an abomination"" (Isaiah 41:21-24). God invites checking because He knows He is always right and man's questions will confirm it.
When the prophesy failed, you didn't follow God's teaching and realize that you were fooled. "But the prophet who presumes to speak a word in My name, which I have not commanded him to speak, or who speaks in the name of other gods, that prophet shall die.' And if you say in your heart, 'How shall we know the word which the LORD has not spoken?' -- when a prophet speaks in the name of the LORD, if the thing does not happen or come to pass, that is the thing which the LORD has not spoken; the prophet has spoken it presumptuously; you shall not be afraid of him" (Deuteronomy 18:20-22). It appears it never occurred to you that you were following false prophets in a false religion. Instead, you assumed that God lied to you! Again, Satan drew you into a position contrary to the Bible. Paul points out a key attribute of God: "God, who cannot lie" (Titus 1:2).
Now that Satan corrupted your faith by diverting it from God to lies and then pulling the rug out from underneath you. He moved in for the kill, tempting you with fornication. Your defenses crumbled because they were built on what men said and not truly from God as you had supposed -- from men who had betrayed your trust. You spun in a cycle of corruption and despair, too disgusted with yourself and too blinded to God to seek true salvation. You were in the position Paul described: "For we know that the law is spiritual, but I am carnal, sold under sin. For what I am doing, I do not understand. For what I will to do, that I do not practice; but what I hate, that I do" (Romans 7:14-15). The solution, of course, is in Christ. "O wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death? I thank God--through Jesus Christ our Lord!" (Romans 7:24-25). But that means truly following Christ and not those who present an imitation Christ.
You want God's help, but until now you haven't been following God like you thought you were. "You ask and do not receive, because you ask amiss, that you may spend it on your pleasures. Adulterers and adulteresses! Do you not know that friendship with the world is enmity with God? Whoever therefore wants to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God. Or do you think that the Scripture says in vain, "The Spirit who dwells in us yearns jealously"? But He gives more grace. Therefore He says: "God resists the proud, But gives grace to the humble." Therefore submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you. Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double-minded. Lament and mourn and weep! Let your laughter be turned to mourning and your joy to gloom. Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and He will lift you up" (James 4:3-10). It appears to me that you've reach the threshold.
I would like to sit down and study with you, from the Bible, about how you can turn back to being a true servant of Christ. Let's first finish getting you back on track, then we can deal with issues such as finding a godly wife.