The Boys' Growing Up in the Lord

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Question

Hi,

I'm having some problems with a few things. The biggest I guess would be fear and anxiety, which causes me to worry about things a lot. I've been OK for a while, then today it kicked up again when I started thinking about a situation I'm in.

The situation confuses me. I have this crush on a girl and long story short, I messed it up. I tried to just move on, but I just had this feeling in my gut that I couldn't let it go. I was feeling really bad about it. When school started I forgot about the whole thing, but then I started having that feeling in my gut again that there was something about her.

I was feeling like I should apologize, so I wrote a note and asked God to give me the perfect opportunity to give it to her, which He did. I didn't hear anything about it since. I continued talking to God about these things and I had a feeling in my gut that God wanted me to be with her. There were some obvious signs as well, so I talked to God about it and asked Him if there was something there for me, or if I should just move on. Then an answer came in two ways: I was in church and I saw someone in front of me had a neck tattoo which was partially covered. The only visible thing was a first name. I looked over and someone had on a shirt, but most of the words were obstructed and only one word was visible, then it hit me that the words together spelled out the girl's name. The sermon that day, if I remember correctly, was about having faith in God's promise But I still had my doubts about the whole thing. Then the next day I was in the front office and noticed a letter that had her name written on it. It may not seem like much, but when I saw it I just that that feeling that God answered my prayer if you know what I'm saying. The feeling continued with me talking to God about it and there were promising signs that He had a plan for me and her, but then the feelings just stopped.

I kind of broke down for a while, which kicked up some of my anxiety and worry filled my mind, so I prayed again. My main thing was I wanted to know if she forgave me, so I prayed and asked God to give me the perfect opportunity, when her friends weren't around, and that He would give me the courage to ask her and that He would encourage her to forgive me. The next day I got off the bus and I looked over and she got off the bus right next to mine, and not one of her friends in sight, so I thought "OK." I kept walking but people where in the way, but the closer I got, they just parted like the Red Sea -- that's the only way I could describe it. When I got closer, I really got nervous. I tried to keep walking, but I felt this pull in my gut. Without thinking I turned around and said, "Hey can I ask you a question?"

"Sure."

"I wanted to know if you forgave me for all that stuff."

"Yeah."

"OK. Good. It just bugged me not knowing."

"Oh, no, you're fine."

My day was going good, to say the least, until I got this bad feeling that it didn't mean anything. I felt the same way as before, like I mistook that "sign" for a coincidence or something that was not there. I prayed again, "God please help me with her. I don't know what to believe. I'm so confused. Please, is there something there for me? Is it part of your plan?"

Later that day at a party I turned around and there she walked through the door. She was another dude's guest, though it really looked like they were together. Anyway somewhere deep in my gut I had a feeling that was God answering me, but I'm not sure. But I know my gut is almost always right. I'm still confused about all of this. I don't know what to do, what to say, what to believe.

Recently I found out she is dating that guy, and every once in a while I'll ask God to give me a sign that He's keeping His promise. Some days they come and some days they don't. Recently they haven't been coming for a while, and I'm scared that it's never going to happen -- like I've been lied to. I feel like God brought me to this site, so I'm hoping you can help me. I'm getting worried and worked up about it. I don't know what to do can you help me.

I'm sorry for the long message. I just had to tell you the story so you would understand.


Answer

There are things we need to talk about, which you might not find pleasant to hear. I hope you'll stick with me and consider them.

Look back at your note and notice how often every decision you are making is based on your feelings. God said that feelings are an unreliable guide. "He who trusts in his own heart is a fool, but whoever walks wisely will be delivered" (Proverbs 28:26). Feelings change, unlike the truth or God Himself. What should have been a big warning is your observation that your gut feelings are "almost always right." I suspect you are being optimistic in that observation, but even if I grant that you are right 9 times out of 10, this is not what I would expect from God. Back in Moses' day, the people wanted to know how they could tell if a person was a true prophet of God. "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 18:21-22). It is simple logic. God cannot lie. He is always right. Therefore, the person God communicates through must always be right as well.

But another problem is that the Bible states that prophecy has ended. "Love never fails. But whether there are prophecies, they will fail; whether there are tongues, they will cease; whether there is knowledge, it will vanish away. For we know in part and we prophesy in part. But when that which is perfect has come, then that which is in part will be done away. When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child; but when I became a man, I put away childish things" (I Corinthians 13:8-11). See: The Age of Miracles.

Notice that what you called signs, you reject if they aren't what you wanted. They aren't really signs. They aren't miracles that cause you to sit up and take notice. What you observe are normal events that because of when they happened you paid attention to them. See: Does God send us signs?

Notice that you have told yourself that God promised you something that you only had a feeling about. In other words, you've made your own feelings into your God. There was no promise -- only your own personal hope. When the Bible is talking about God's promises, it is referring to the things God told people, such as God's promise of salvation to those who obey Him (Ephesians 1:13-14).