I found your site a few weeks ago and quite frankly I wish I had come up on it sooner, especially regarding sexual purity.
I was 18 when I "invited Jesus into my heart." However, I was filled with lust, having no regards for fleeing sexual immorality. I didn't seek to understand why God forbade premarital sex (you have explained it beautifully). I naively lost my virginity at 19 (my intentions where not to have sex that night). However, I've always felt I could handle it. I thought everything was acceptable, except having sex. I was strong enough to avoid putting myself in those situations. Not this time.
I have repented of it and have discovered God's grace. I feel quite stupid though. It took me losing my viriginy to understand Christ died for all my sins.
I have been in a relationship with a beautiful man for nearly two years (he is a virgin). We have talked about marriage and have been walking purely. I can't help but feel like I've given away a gift, his (and mine). I still feel a lot of regret and have been experiencing quite a few flashbacks from that night. My question is how do I overcome the regret of lost virginity and flashbacks of that night? How can I be an example to my little cousins when they ask me if I've already "done it"? What credibility will I have if I want to be a role model in teaching them to avoid sexual immorality?
I'm afraid to be intimate again to be honest. The two times I've had sex have totally scarred me. The person was only seeking self gatification. How do I overcome the scarring in order to avoid bringing that emotional baggage into marriage? I wish I could go back in time.
Thank you for taking the time to answer. Keep up the good work.
The past cannot be changed, only the future. I'm glad you learned from your mistakes, so many people do not. "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).
It is true that you can't say that your first experience with sex was with your husband. But you can make his first experience memorial and you can be determined that while your past was regretable, your future with your husband will hold no regrets. We can't erase the memories of the past, but those memories can become insignificant because of your new life. I assume your experience was not good, but that doesn't mean it will be like that on your wedding night. When you get married, you will be with a man who loves you and cares about you. You will be with a man who committed his life to you and is offering himself to you alone. Remember he loves you for who you are. Who you were doesn't matter. You are not that foolish young woman anymore.
In regards to teaching others, you can be honest: "Yes, I was dumb and had sex, and I've regretted it ever since. It would have been better to have waited until my wedding night when it would have been extra special with the man I loved, instead of being used by a man I thought I liked." You can let your cousins learn from your mistakes in hopes that they won't repeat them.
"Letting Jesus into your heart" is not how the Bible teaches us to become followers of Christ. Take a look at What Must I Do to be Saved?
Wow, thank you for the prompt response! May God bless you!