Christian BoyLove Forum #66829
Somewhere along the way the church has come to be heard to preach:
we can expect an easy life,
we have a right to an easy life,
and if there's something stopping us from having what we want, we can ignore it.
This is why it has accepted gay marriage and the remarriage of divorcees before that.
Yet that's not what Jesus offers. He calls us to a life of crucifixion, to be willing to suffer for what we know is right.
I'm sorry to hear that your friends have abandoned you. There's no excuse for Christian friends to do so - whatever we are, and whatever we've done, if we've repented the church has no right to reject us. In effect they are demonstrating that their religion is only skin deep. Try to forgive them. Jesus gets rather fierce on that topic, and holding a grudge doesn't do us any good anyway.
By the sounds of it you need to find a new church. In which case get on with it. Go church shopping. At worst it will broaden your education, and you may get pleasantly surprised, or even get a few free meals by innocently turning up when it's a bring and share lunch. And you may be surprised by God at one because you are being faithful, even if your expectations of that group were pretty low.
Beyond that, building a new life more generally is HARD. But go looking for things that open to new members; book clubs, board game groups and walking associations often exist. Your local library may well have adverts for such things, and the internet may throw up opportunities.
Do make the effort to get out of doors every day, at least for a short walk. Joining a gym might be helpful or by some other means take regular exercise; it keeps my MILD depression at bay (I hate to claim it as depression despite a diagnosis because I've seen the devastation that real depression brings). Go and make the trips to the local history sites you've always planned to get to but never quite got round to. Get into flame wars on the internet... it's a distraction, if nothing else. And on a good day you'll learn something.
But most of all remember that we DO have hope. One day God will wipe away every tear and we will be at home with Him for eternity. The song which best summaries that hope for me is 'There is a higher throne', linked below. Spend time with God, reading the bible AND other Christian books; the Narnia stories have more theology in them than the average academic theology book. Try and look at things as they will appear in a few thousand years time when you look back at them surrounded by real friends in heaven.
And finally: if it's getting tough, try and reach out to people. Admitting you need support is a great first step - though as Christians we shouldn't have to struggle to admit it.
You are a child of God. Expect Him to provide - and go looking for His provision by actively doing stuff. We should expect Him to work through the ordinary in life; remember the story of the man who turned down all God's provision for him:
'A terrible storm came into a town and local officials sent out an emergency warning that the riverbanks would soon overflow and flood the nearby homes. They ordered everyone in the town to evacuate immediately.
A faithful Christian man heard the warning and decided to stay, saying to himself, “I will trust God and if I am in danger, then God will send a divine miracle to save me.”
The neighbors came by his house and said to him, “We’re leaving and there is room for you in our car, please come with us!” But the man declined. “I have faith that God will save me.”
As the man stood on his porch watching the water rise up the steps, a man in a canoe paddled by and called to him, “Hurry and come into my canoe, the waters are rising quickly!” But the man again said, “No thanks, God will save me.”
The flood waters rose higher pouring water into his living room and the man had to retreat to the second floor. A police motorboat came by and saw him at the window. “We will come up and rescue you!” they shouted. But the man refused, waving them off saying, “Use your time to save someone else! I have faith that God will save me!”
The flood waters rose higher and higher and the man had to climb up to his rooftop.
A helicopter spotted him and dropped a rope ladder. A rescue officer came down the ladder and pleaded with the man, "Grab my hand and I will pull you up!" But the man STILL refused, folding his arms tightly to his body. “No thank you! God will save me!”
Shortly after, the house broke up and the flood waters swept the man away and he drowned.
When in Heaven, the man stood before God and asked, “I put all of my faith in You. Why didn’t You come and save me?”
And God said, “Son, I sent you a warning. I sent you a car. I sent you a canoe. I sent you a motorboat. I sent you a helicopter. What more were you looking for?”
God will provide for you, as He has for me. But take the first steps, do the best you can to do stuff...
and come back and tells us in a few months how God has been blessing you.
• ( https link ) There is a higher throne