Bible Discussion: Christian/Non-Christian Relationships

Christian/Non-Christian Relationships
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Peter Reeves
2003-08-18 11:02:50 EST
Hey everyone, how are you all doin?

Ok, heres the go, I'm 19, and i have been dating this girl (18 atm) for just
over 5 months now. Problem is, she is not a Christian.
I really love her and we are pretty sure that in the future (when we finish
uni) we will get married. We trust eachother completely and can talk about
anything.

She has no problems with me being a Christian, and says she respects my
choices and descisions. She will even come along to our youth services some
times. A lot of people say that differences in religion can be a deciding
factor in determining wether relationships work or not.
My greatest wish is that she might become a Christian, and that I should
continue the relationship and eventually marry (she says that she also
respects my descision to wait until mariage for sex).

I would like to get your opinions on this situation, as it troubles me
sometimes, not being able to communicate to her, (very likely my life
partner) in spiritual matters. should I keep the relationship alive? Should
I try to bring her to Christ?

SAM





U2 Fan
2003-08-18 11:29:29 EST
Well don't push her away ! It's hard enough these days finding someone to
love and who loves you, primarily LOVE is the key.
Some things not to do, many Christians have tried to persuade someone to
become a Christian and it become arguments and relationships break up.
To be honest many in the church who are Christians backslide or fall away or
get divorced tragically, she may ( prayerfully ) become a Christian and you
will both be Chrisitans forever. I'd say PRAY PRAY and PRAY some more, in my
opinion God has given you this girlfriend and it's important to be grateful
and praise God for friendships. Do everything out of love.

If she is happy to join your church meetings, over time relationships will
form. I've experienced many preachers attack like knifes saying "don't be
yoked with unbelievers" totally unloving and faithless and this between
denominations let alone Christian or not !

Personally I've lost a Christian girlfriend who was far "stronger a
Christian" than me in the church leaders eyes due to me believing something
minorly different about prophecy from the leaders view he destroyed the
relationship. She later quit.

Another thing to concider is what defines her as not being a Christian, if
it is sins she won't repent off, these are the issues to get dealt with.

Be patient , read 1 Corth 13

"Peter Reeves" <peterreeves@bigpond.com> wrote in message
news:uU50b.42400$bo1.3644@news-server.bigpond.net.au...
> Hey everyone, how are you all doin?
>
> Ok, heres the go, I'm 19, and i have been dating this girl (18 atm) for
just
> over 5 months now. Problem is, she is not a Christian.
> I really love her and we are pretty sure that in the future (when we
finish
> uni) we will get married. We trust eachother completely and can talk about
> anything.
>
> She has no problems with me being a Christian, and says she respects my
> choices and descisions. She will even come along to our youth services
some
> times. A lot of people say that differences in religion can be a deciding
> factor in determining wether relationships work or not.
> My greatest wish is that she might become a Christian, and that I should
> continue the relationship and eventually marry (she says that she also
> respects my descision to wait until mariage for sex).
>
> I would like to get your opinions on this situation, as it troubles me
> sometimes, not being able to communicate to her, (very likely my life
> partner) in spiritual matters. should I keep the relationship alive?
Should
> I try to bring her to Christ?
>
> SAM
>
>
>
>



Gaffo
2003-08-18 21:13:28 EST
Peter Reeves wrote:

> Hey everyone, how are you all doin?
>
> Ok, heres the go, I'm 19, and i have been dating this girl (18 atm) for just
> over 5 months now. Problem is, she is not a Christian.
> I really love her and we are pretty sure that in the future (when we finish
> uni) we will get married. We trust eachother completely and can talk about
> anything.
>
> She has no problems with me being a Christian, and says she respects my
> choices and descisions. She will even come along to our youth services some
> times. A lot of people say that differences in religion can be a deciding
> factor in determining wether relationships work or not.
> My greatest wish is that she might become a Christian, and that I should
> continue the relationship and eventually marry (she says that she also
> respects my descision to wait until mariage for sex).
>
> I would like to get your opinions on this situation, as it troubles me
> sometimes, not being able to communicate to her, (very likely my life
> partner) in spiritual matters. should I keep the relationship alive? Should
> I try to bring her to Christ?
>
> SAM



Real Love is unconditional. Either that is the love you have for her
or it is not.

You will get no answers from us. Only you know what is in your heart.

good luck.

PS if you really love her, dont be a fool.




Gaffo
2003-08-18 21:18:58 EST
u2 fan wrote:


>
> Personally I've lost a Christian girlfriend who was far "stronger a
> Christian" than me in the church leaders eyes due to me believing something
> minorly different about prophecy from the leaders view he destroyed the
> relationship.


thats what happened to me last fall. We are virtually engaged and she
listened to her preacher who told her to end it. (I'm an athiest - but
have no problem with Christianity).

She is now engaged to that preacher.

It was not real love (on her part), because the real thing is tolerant
and unconditional.

Maybe his guy is like her...........insecure inhis faith and must have
everyone near him be a Christian. (even of the same denomination or church).

Real faith is stonger than that.

I wish him luck.





Gaffo
2003-08-18 21:24:38 EST
Scott wrote:

> "Peter Reeves" <peterreeves@bigpond.com> wrote in message
> news:uU50b.42400$bo1.3644@news-server.bigpond.net.au...
>
>>Hey everyone, how are you all doin?
>>
>>Ok, heres the go, I'm 19, and i have been dating this girl (18 atm) for
>
> just
>
>>over 5 months now. Problem is, she is not a Christian.
>>I really love her and we are pretty sure that in the future (when we
>
> finish
>
>>uni) we will get married. We trust eachother completely and can talk about
>>anything.
>>
>>She has no problems with me being a Christian, and says she respects my
>>choices and descisions. She will even come along to our youth services
>
> some
>
>>times. A lot of people say that differences in religion can be a deciding
>>factor in determining wether relationships work or not.
>>My greatest wish is that she might become a Christian, and that I should
>>continue the relationship and eventually marry (she says that she also
>>respects my descision to wait until mariage for sex).
>>
>>I would like to get your opinions on this situation, as it troubles me
>>sometimes, not being able to communicate to her, (very likely my life
>>partner) in spiritual matters. should I keep the relationship alive?
>
> Should
>
>>I try to bring her to Christ?
>>
>>SAM
>>
>
> Well, Sam, I've been where you are at and ultimately it did not work out.
> We remain fast friends, but conversations are rare given that almost 800
> miles now separate us.
> I guess the first question is what is she that makes her not a Christian?
> In my case the woman was a Wiccan. There were some VERY interesting
> discussions!
>
> Since you posted this to quite a few places I should probably let you know
> that I
> am posting from the Lutheran group, and am a member of the Missouri Synod.
> I have been Lutheran most of my life and when I wasn't going to church I
> wound
> up marrying a catholic woman. She remained catholic for the first 14 1/2
> years of
> our 15 year marriage.
>
> That all being said, let me get to it. For the most part it actually will
> not matter. The
> problem(s) will arise if and when you have children and if you wind up
> growing in your
> faith. That rocked my wife and I a bit as I grew in the faith and started
> taking the kids
> to a Lutheran church, she had a problem with it. Fortunately the
> circumstances were such
> that we went to the Lutheran church. Had she been as strong in her faith as
> I ultimately
> was there would have been BIG problems. But all in all, prayer is the KEY
> to it all. Pray
> to God to guide her to the faith and to strengthen you in yours to make the
> right decisions.
>
> You need to discuss this all with her. DON'T try and convert her, she has
> to want to do it
> on her own. But do discuss the differences between the two religions.
>
>


so you are telling him that she must convert or there is no marraige.
this is doomed to fail.

Love places no conditions.......if it does, it ain't the real thing.

Compromise.............without that there will be no future.

With mutual respect come compromise......without that there is no future.

...................................................


Sam, you must ask yourself if you love her enough to except the "worst
case" senario. Will you marry her if you know that she will never become
a Christain?

To know that is to know if you really love her.

good luck sam!



Scott
2003-08-19 01:00:47 EST

"gaffo" <gaffo@usenet.net> wrote in message
news:vk2ucmbk99cf9a@corp.supernews.com...
>
> >
>
>
> so you are telling him that she must convert or there is no marraige.
> this is doomed to fail.

No, that is not what I said at all.


>
> Love places no conditions.......if it does, it ain't the real thing.
>
> Compromise.............without that there will be no future.
>
> With mutual respect come compromise......without that there is no future.
>
> ...................................................
>
>
> Sam, you must ask yourself if you love her enough to except the "worst
> case" senario. Will you marry her if you know that she will never become
> a Christain?
>
> To know that is to know if you really love her.
>
> good luck sam!
>
>



Jessica L. Price
2003-08-19 01:09:50 EST

"Peter Reeves" <peterreeves@bigpond.com> wrote in message
news:uU50b.42400$bo1.3644@news-server.bigpond.net.au...
| Hey everyone, how are you all doin?
|
| Ok, heres the go, I'm 19, and i have been dating this girl (18 atm) for
just
| over 5 months now. Problem is, she is not a Christian.
| I really love her and we are pretty sure that in the future (when we
finish
| uni) we will get married. We trust eachother completely and can talk
about
| anything.
|
| She has no problems with me being a Christian, and says she respects my
| choices and descisions. She will even come along to our youth services
some
| times. A lot of people say that differences in religion can be a
deciding
| factor in determining wether relationships work or not.
| My greatest wish is that she might become a Christian, and that I should
| continue the relationship and eventually marry (she says that she also
| respects my descision to wait until mariage for sex).
|
| I would like to get your opinions on this situation, as it troubles me
| sometimes, not being able to communicate to her, (very likely my life
| partner) in spiritual matters. should I keep the relationship alive?
Should
| I try to bring her to Christ?

Hello Sam. Or is it Peter? (I'm not sure whether to go by your sig or
your email.)

Speaking as someone who knows quite a few psychotherapists (relatives and
friends), I'd have to admit that religious differences are one of the
things that comes up in marriage counseling. However, far and away the
biggest issues are financial, not religious.

I'm going to tell you about a few couples who at least started out in
different faiths. I'll admit upfront that I am not Christian, but I don't
think that impairs my ability to judge whether a marriage is working, so
read what I have to say and draw your own conclusions. I personally
believe that you have a good chance of leading her to Christianity,
because most of the people I know who became Christian (but weren't raised
that way) started on that path because of a loved one. I think that
Pastor Dave is wrong to advise you not to try -- what better way is there
to lead someone to Christ than through love? If you all follow his advice
and only date Christians, I think you'll see a huge drop in your
conversion rate, but that's only my opinion.

Anyway, without further ado, let me present the couples:

Couple #1:
Woman -- Catholic. Man -- Jewish.

They've been happily married for at least 25 years. The kids were raised
Catholic, but allowed to attend Temple with their dad if they wanted to.
They also celebrated Chanukah and Passover. As part of the Catholic
education program at their church, the students celebrate a Passover Seder
to learn about Jesus' times and culture, and how the holiday relates to
Christianity. The couple's children and their dad helped the teachers to
set it up, to the great enjoyment and mutual education of all involved.
At 16, the older girl decided she wanted to make a formal commitment to
Catholicism, and was baptized again and confirmed. The younger girl,
despite the efforts of her mother and the leniency of her father, decided
she felt more drawn to Judaism and is converting.

The couple does not find their differing faiths an obstacle to their
relationship, and both are comfortable attending ceremonies at the other's
place of worship.

Couple #2:
Woman -- Jewish. Man -- Protestant (he grew up Baptist, I think.)

The man was nominally Christian, but not particularly devout. In getting
to know his future spouse, he became very interested in Judaism. She was
not very observant, but proud of her heritage. Before they married, he
told her he wanted to convert for a number of reasons: so that their
children would be raised in a religiously unified household, because he
wanted to join her people, and most importantly, because she had shown him
what a beautiful religion it was, and he couldn't see himself following
any other path to God. His newfound love for the religion she had grown
up with caused her to become more observant. They're still married (I
think 11 years). His interest also led him to become closer to his wife's
family.

Couple #3:
Woman -- Catholic. Man -- Protestant (non-denominational.)

The woman was raised in a fairly devout Catholic community. The man was
raised in a devout and fairly fundamentalist Protestant community. Her
family accepted him, but his did not accept her. Being fairly easygoing,
he agreed to convert to Catholicism when they married, but found himself
increasingly unhappy with it. The woman also became disenchanted with the
Catholic church, so they switched to a non-denominational church. He was
happy there, but she found it too fundamentalist. They then went to a
Methodist church. Both were happy for about six years. He continues to
serve as a church leader, but she no longer attends church. One of their
children seems to be an atheist, the other is an agnostic. Their marriage
is successful, and they have been married for 31 years.

Couple #4:
Woman -- Protestant (Lutheran). Man -- Jewish.

The woman was a fairly devout Episcopalian, and they agreed to keep their
respective religions when they married. However, after a few years of
marriage, she became fascinated with Judaism, and converted. As with
couple #2, her interest sparked greater interest on his part, and he is
now a far more devout Jew than when he married her. They have been
married for 12 years, and are raising their kids Jewish.

Couple #5:
Woman -- atheist. Man -- Protestant.

The man was a non-denominational Protestant, and the woman was a fairly
enthusiastic atheist. Despite numerous fiery arguments over religion,
they married. While the arguments continued throughout their early
marriage, the woman has now joined his church. She's not a particularly
active member, but she seems to be gradually growing in her faith.
They've been married for four years.

Couple #6:
Woman -- Jewish. Man -- Protestant (Lutheran).

The woman converted, with some trepidation, to her husband's church. For
a while things seemed to be going well. Then he cheated on her. They
have since divorced, and she has returned to Judaism, taking the kids with
her.

Couple #7:
Woman -- Catholic. Man -- atheist.

The man was a very cynical, world-weary atheist. Early in the marriage,
he attended some Catholic services to please his wife, but gradually began
to find the services beautiful and emotionally resonant. He converted and
is now an observant Catholic. She said that his interest in learning
about the religion has taught her about it and made her look at it in
entirely new ways that increased her faith.

Couple #8:
Woman -- Catholic. Man -- Jewish.

The woman (now 80) came from a very prominent, devoutly Catholic Italian
family. Her first marriage was to another Italian Catholic, and was more
or less arranged. He was out with his mistress while she was in labor
with their son, so her family had it annulled. Shortly after, she fell in
love with a Jewish man, and was ostracized by her family. His family
adored her, and more or less took her in. A few weeks before the wedding,
he had a heart attack and died. His family helped her get started in
business, and they remained close. She eventually married another
Catholic.

Moral of the story? I don't know if there is one. But in none of these
marriages did the more devout partner lose faith by being married to
someone whose beliefs differed from their own. In some cases, their
example caused their partner to become interested, and led to both
partners growing in faith. Even if neither partner converts, their
marriages have succeeded.

If your faith is strong, and you love the woman, I think there's a good
chance that you can lead her to God. And if you do, her interest and
faith may increase your own. She doesn't sound like she's particularly
attached to agnosticism, and if she's willing to attend services, it may
be an indication that she has some interest. Agnosticism, unlike atheism,
is not a particularly comfortable place to be, spiritually, since it's
essentially an admission of indecision. For most people I know, it has
been a transitional phase.

As I said before, while most of the therapists I know admit that religious
differences occasionally come up in marital counseling, it doesn't seem to
be one of the major issues that they deal with every day.

So, in that sense, I'd say go for it.

Other issues concern me more, however.

After only five months, you want to marry her? When you're 19 and she's
18? Perhaps you should wait until you're both at least halfway through
college. Unless you're already certain what your career is going to be
and where you're going to work, there are pressing issues here that can
put more strain on a new marriage than religious differences, such as
career demands that might conflict (if your career requires you to move,
and hers requires her to stay put, how are you going to decide?),
financial demands, the timing of possible children, and so on. These are
things that are difficult to know for certain when you're that young. I
would suggest that you discuss these things very carefully, and perhaps
get some counseling.

There's nothing wrong with waiting. If your love is strong enough to
stand the test of religious differences, surely you love her enough to
wait until both of you have a more clear comprehension of your future.
College can present enough difficulties all on its own without the
additional ones being a married student provides. And five months is an
awfully short period of time to be making this sort of decision.

And delaying might give you a chance to get to know better how likely it
seems that you will be able to lead her to your manner of religious
thought.

Take a deep breath, slow down, and plan.

Best wishes,

Jessica




Bullnot@wanted Nobull
2003-08-20 12:18:18 EST
p*s@bigpond.com (Peter Reeves) shocked everyone by
exclaiming<uU50b.42400$bo1.3644@news-server.bigpond.net.au>:

>Hey everyone, how are you all doin?
>
>Ok, heres the go, I'm 19, and i have been dating this girl (18 atm) for
>just over 5 months now. Problem is, she is not a Christian.
>I really love her and we are pretty sure that in the future (when we
>finish uni) we will get married. We trust eachother completely and can
>talk about anything.
>
>She has no problems with me being a Christian, and says she respects my
>choices and descisions. She will even come along to our youth services
>some times. A lot of people say that differences in religion can be a
>deciding factor in determining wether relationships work or not.
>My greatest wish is that she might become a Christian, and that I should
>continue the relationship and eventually marry (she says that she also
>respects my descision to wait until mariage for sex).
>
>I would like to get your opinions on this situation, as it troubles me
>sometimes, not being able to communicate to her, (very likely my life
>partner) in spiritual matters. should I keep the relationship alive?
>Should I try to bring her to Christ?
>
>SAM


Why not? You're not helping promote Christianity by ignoring the fact she
is not already a Christian are you?

Why is she not one or have you ever asked her? Does she say she will
convert to Christianity, or does she refuse?

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