Monday, June 15

Living in “Sin”

I don't need no license
To sign on no line

And I don't need no preacher
To tell me you're mine
I don't need no diamonds
I don't need no new bride
I just need you, baby
To look me in the eye
- Bon Jovi

After spending a weekend filled with uncountable questions about our non-engagement, why we are “shacking up” and hearing that it was spoken about in church on Sunday in our absence, I decided it was time to get it in the open; time for me to stop, research, and put everything into perspective.

Let me first say that I, of all people, want to be engaged and planning a wedding with Brandon more than my family and friends want it - now just seems like it is not the time.

After doing a lot of thinking and a lot of reading I still feel like I’m stuck between a rock and a hard place. Growing up, I did everything I was told – was a good student, was a responsible teen and young adult – and now, I feel like some of those around me seem to question my responsibility. I’m amazed that something that I originally thought was such a great idea, something that was going to make life so much simpler, has seemingly blown up in my face. Just four days in, not even completely unpacked, I start to wonder if we made the right decision.

According to a report by Fox News, “cohabitation has been mainstreamed, especially with the help of Hollywood stars like Sarandon, Robbins, Hawn and Russell, who have publicly advocated their type of union”. If this is the case, why do I feel like I’m the first and only person to do this?

I never thought that moving in with Brandon would cause such a stir – never thought it would make me be the “bad person” that I now feel like I am. After finding my new church home and giving my life to Christ I learn that I am committing “sexual sin”. In the service yesterday the pastor said, “if you say you follow Christ & you live together and you are sexually free then something is wrong… you are corrupt”. Does this mean that I’m no longer on the path to righteousness? Will I eternally pay for a so-called “wrong” that I made now?

Last night as I cried myself to sleep over this issue that is eating away at my happiness I wondered why everyone seems to bring the issue of cohabitation to me. Why is it that the female in the relationship seem to catch the heat? Does it mean that I am the only one that is sinning? Am I lesser of a person now than I was last week before we moved in together?

Other countries, which are of Christian decent, practice cohabitation as a norm. Does this mean that because I’m from America I am sinning more than those from other countries? From the same Fox News article mentioned earlier, the author writes of her arrival in America and the greeting she received about her personal beliefs. She says that she was told her family was regarded as “heathens” because they did not have a problem with the concept of cohabitation. Does this mean that I am heathen now?

I understand that “old fashioned” beliefs will always run through the threads of our society. What I will never understand is how my own family can make me feel lesser of a person for doing what my heart feels I should do. Maybe I should have kept it to myself, lived a secret life in order to “protect” my family – and maybe not. The secrets kept from the grandparents or family friends will always be found out in the end and the small comments made by loved ones, thought as harmless play, seem to slice holes in my heart.

All I can say is that something that I was praying would be some of the happiest times I’ve had yet in my life have been scarred by the unwelcoming arms of the stigmas carried by me “living in sin”.

I can only ask for forgiveness… Dear Lord. Forgive me for living in sin. If, in your eyes, I am not wrong for my living situation and happiness, please forgive those who are judging me for doing so.

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