Julie began to drift away from God when she went away to college. Her family and church friends had encouraged her in her faith and held her accountable. Now that they were several hours away, it didn’t take long for Julie to feel that God was distant and uninvolved in her life.
Halfway through the fall semester she began dating Luke. Soon, Julie began to expect things from him for which she should have been relying on God. As Julie grew increasingly dependent on Luke, she allowed their relationship to become sexual.
Julie rationalized her behavior. “I knew that sex outside of marriage is sinful. I told myself it was okay because I was ‘in love.’ Plus I thought it couldn’t be that bad; everyone else was doing it.”
Ironically, Luke didn’t comfort Julie or make her feel secure. “We both felt guilty. We didn’t trust each other. Our relationship was very dramatic and volatile.”
Julie’s relationship with God went from strained to practically nonexistent. “I never prayed, I never read my Bible. I felt a nagging all the time that I should, but when I ignored the gentle prodding that got quieter too.”
When Luke broke off the relationship, Julie was devastated. But looking back, Julie believes God had finally intervened. God allowed her life to be shaken so Julie would realize all she really needed was Him.
After the breakup, sorrow overwhelmed Julie because her life had become something she didn’t recognize. “I missed God. I couldn’t remember the last time I prayed. That’s when I finally cried about that instead of Luke.”
Broken, Julie turned to a home group from a local church she had been sporadically attending. Although she had only been shallow and fake with the young women, she now opened up and told them honestly about her life. They graciously encouraged her and became a source of accountability as Julie found her way back into a right relationship with God. Now Julie finds comfort, strength, and security in God alone.
Note: This story is one of the “Faith Shakers” in Kathy’s newly released Bible study “Unshakeable Faith: 8 Traits for Rock-Solid Living.” This study explores the life and teachings of Peter to help you build a faith strong enough to withstand the harshest storms of life. Click here for more information about the book.
Think about a time in your life that your own sin strained your relationship with God. What brought you to repentance? How did God restore your relationship?