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  1. "Why is the desire to be with the person you love or to be intimate with that person, a sin? Well, I kept thinking I wanted to say something, but there are some very good replies here. I do have a little to add. First, what this is really saying is that you don't want to change, you want an excuse to continue in your sin. Secondly, if and when you really do want to change, God will back you, 100%. I have had enough experience with various problems to know that it can be a long and hard battle but if you really do look to God to bring you through, He will not ignore you. You have to make the choice, though, and if you're unwilling to do that, you will never find an answer that gives you real peace.
  2. It's hard. I had a similar problem, not about a person but a life change that seemed to have been stripped from me and I kept wanting to "go back." The truth is that anything we desire (whether we consiously want to or not) can stand between us and a good relationship with God. Give your heart totally to Christ, trust in Him and there will be no room for anything else. It might not happend immediately, but He will fill your heart so full that you won't need anything except what He gives you and you will know without doubt that it's from His hand.
  3. I went through a long series of lectures via Youtube by Ryan Reeves, Assistant Professor of Historical Theology at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary. He covers more than the Middle Ages, but spends a lot of time on them. I was surprised at some of it; how the popes and priests jockeyed their way into position and the liberties they took. I knew they weren't perfect, but my goodness, it was hard to realize what a downfall public Christianity took, especially after Constatine. The Roman Catholic Church is at the center of Medieval Church History and ruled by fear.
  4. Short answer: Yes. He can help you and He will if you expect Him to. Most of our troubles here are caused by our attitudes. You are loved by God and you are not alone if you know Him personally. What should you do? Count your blessings. We often forget about the things we do have in counting the things we don't (or don't think) we have. What do you have? I can tell just from you post that you have access to the internet and you have an education of some sort. That's a beginning. Apparently you have a place to live, probably electricity and running water. God has been good to you. Practically speaking, forget your college degree and go out and try to find a job of any kind, doing whatever you can find to do. Help someone somehow. Reach out, not for friendship but to help someone else who needs it. If nothing else, volunteer. Don't let the devil beat you down.
  5. I smoked for 30 years. I tried over and over and failed over and over. Sometimes I would make it a week, sometimes a month, sometimes longer, but I always failed. What worked for me was that I finally came to the place where I really and truly wanted to quit. That's where you will do it, too. When you are at that stage there won't be any crutches, not the faintest thought of going back or failing. I quit back when nicotine patches were available only through prescription. They helped, but they didn't do it all. True determination is what it takes. That's probably not what you want to hear, but that's what it took for me and that's what the "experts" say is true, too. The real, almost desperate "want to" is the key.
  6. Let God deal with them. Who art thou that judgest another man's servant? to his own master he standeth or falleth. Yea, he shall be holden up: for God is able to make him stand. Romans 14:4 That's easier said than done, I know, but while we must pray for these people and be willing to speak up when God tells us to, we have to know that God is bigger than we are and has big shoulders. We feel offended, but they are offending God, not us, so let Him deal with it. I have found that when I try to take on God's responsibilities, my peace leaves.
  7. Praying in tongues isn't something you should try to bring on yourself. There is too much danger of "other spririts" taking advantage of that. Instead, concentrate on the Lord, go deep into prayer and let yourself be lost in His presence and you will begin to speak in tongues naturally, the way the Spirit intended. Don't try to create the experience on your own and it will come to you.
  8. Do these words carry no weight? " Then said Mary unto the angel, How shall this be, seeing I know not a man? " Luke 1:34
  9. I think that every Christian goes through dry periods where it seems like we're just not in tune with God. For myself, I sometimes find that I am trying to lead God instead of allowing Him to lead me. I don't know if that makes sense but it's how I feel at times. Also, it helps at times to read the Bible out loud to myself. It makes me concentrate. As far as the job goes, have you asked God if you should? Just a thought.
  10. These things have no power over you if you are in Christ. Why be afraid? They supposedly connect to gods that are no gods. There is only one God and He is all powerful.
  11. Still want to argue? LOL Halloween started as a pagan ceremony (the Celtic Samhain), was taken over by Rome as a "day of the dead" but the church moved "All Saints Day" to the day after and that's where the "Hallowed Evening" shortened to "Hallowe'en" came from. It followed the same pattern as Christmas. The church tried to take it over rather unsuccessfully like it did Christmas. Same difference. We pick and choose what we want.
  12. I could go off in 17 different directions so I will present a few points and leave it at that. 1. For me personally, a dream catcher is on the same level as beaded moccassins and fringed leather jackets. There is nothing especially meaningful at all about any of it except as a part of the Native American culture. So they don't bother me. They do, apparently, bother some, so I wouldn't have them around those people. (In the spirit of 1 Corinthians 8:9) 2. When I said I "felt" I was not referring to my emotions, but rather that I felt in my spirit. There is a vast difference and I agree with you in that following our fleshly feelings is dangerous. I didn't realize that everything I said would be picked apart. We are admonished to test the spirits, to recognize and follow the Holy Spirit, etc. That's Biblical. 3. Christmas... the time of year was used by various pagan religions, from the Roman Saturnalia which was a "time of lawlessness" when no one would be punished for their misdeeds ending in the murder of a chosen person, to Druid killings with mistletoe poison. The church tried to take over Saturnalia but it didn't work very well. It took centuries to get enough Christianity into it to lay as much claim to it as we do now (Santa Claus, Grinches and all). The addition of pagan bases to Easter and Halloween is something each of us need to address prayerfully. 4. Since I said I didn't intend to argue, I won't pursue this any further. I appreciate your strong stand for the Lord's ways. Edited to add that I do celebrate Christmas and enjoy it thoroughly.
  13. I believe that God will judge whether I am right or wrong, thanks anyway. I think it really depends on how you feel about them, where your faith is. Do you celebrate Christmas? Have a Christmas tree? Let your kids hunt eggs on Easter? What about Halloween? Do you celebrate it by going to a special party at the church? I understand what you mean and I'm not trying to be argumentative, but it really is how one feels about anything that makes the difference.
  14. I can't judge your friend, but I was reminded of Romans chapter 14, especially verse 14: I know, and am persuaded by the Lord Jesus, that there is nothing unclean of itself: but to him that esteemeth any thing to be unclean, to him it is unclean. It needs to be read in context and I don't feel as if I can say much about it except that if dreamcatchers seem wrong to you, you should avoid them. If your friend truly doesn't give them any power in her mind or faith, then they are just doodads. It's not in the dreamcatchers (or any other object), but it's in the way we think and feel about them. Just my thoughts.
  15. Maybe my post came across as more somber than I intended, but I was responding to the original poster who was concerned about a lack of happiness as a Christian. Yes, there is sheer joy in being in Christ and it spills over into our daily lives as it should. If any of us know one person who is not saved, we should be burdened by it. If a Christian looks at the condition of our nation and our world right now, he or she should be desperately burdened by it. That's not to say that our joy is gone and that we can't even joke or be happy, but that we are not always "happy."
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