Question:

I'm a young woman. I have a boyfriend. A long time ago I sent pictures of a certain type to another guy. I have since stopped, but he has hassled me and has been trying to bribe, blackmail, whatever it is he can do to make me do things with him that I don't want to do. I barely feel comfortable in my own skin. No one knows about this. I pray often that God will take this burden from me and that he will give me strength to stop feeling so guilty and terrible all the time. I also pray that God will punish me for the sins I've committed in a way that He sees fit rather than being punished by another person harassing me constantly. Am I always going to feel this way? Every small sin I do each day now feels bigger and badder than it should. I often doubt that I deserve to feel better.


Answer:

It is the nature of sin to have a greater impact in your life than you expected it to have.

When you realize you've sin, the answer is always to seek God's forgiveness. "If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness" (I John 1:9). Punishment does not forgive sin. Punishment is there to make us aware that sin exists and to discourage us from sinning again. It takes repentance -- a change in your attitude and behavior -- to gain forgiveness. "For observe this very thing, that you sorrowed in a godly manner: What diligence it produced in you, what clearing of yourselves, what indignation, what fear, what vehement desire, what zeal, what vindication! In all things you proved yourselves to be clear in this matter" (II Corinthians 7:11). You need to get to the point that you can admit that you used to sin, but you are no longer that foolish person in your past.

The hold this man has over you is your embarrassment over your past sins. You can't change the past. But you can stop the harassment. Get a lawyer to write this guy a letter explaining that blackmail is illegal. Insist that he turn over whatever he is using to threaten you with and that he is no longer to contact you. If he makes public the information the pictures he has, he will be sued. Usually that will cause creeps like this to disappear. If you were below the age of consent when these things happened, you can also file a complaint with the police, which will help stop this guy from doing similar things to other young women.

Understand that God doesn't like extortioners and will do something about this man, if he doesn't change his ways. ""In you they take bribes to shed blood; you take usury and increase; you have made profit from your neighbors by extortion, and have forgotten Me," says the Lord GOD. "Behold, therefore, I beat My fists at the dishonest profit which you have made, and at the bloodshed which has been in your midst. Can your heart endure, or can your hands remain strong, in the days when I shall deal with you? I, the LORD, have spoken, and will do it"" (Ezekiel 22:12-14).

He said he doesn't care. He doesn't threat me directly about anything. He just said watch what's going to happen and your going to make me do something I don't want to. I am afraid to tell my mom to take me to the station to report him. He told me he got a new phone at the beginning of the summer and he asked for my friend's number that was in his old phone. I haven't sent him pictures since long before the summer so doesn't that mean if he can't get my friend's number from his old phone that he can't have the pictures either? Could I go with someone other than my parent to report him? We go to the same school. I'm really scared. I just want him completely out of my life. The other day he said it's the last time he's going to ask, and I will just have to see what happens. He's said that before but since I told my friend I feel like something is going to happen this time. Also he suffers from bipolarity. I don't know if that causes him to say those things.

Since this is taking place at school, go to the school counselor or the school principle and tell him what you are being threatened with. They will know how to handle it.