THE STORY OF A YOUNG MAN


There was a young man who has been inflicted with painful experiences for years. When he was sixteen, he received Jesus Christ as his Savior and Lord. For three years, he is haunted with bitter memories of his past. Since that time, his one goal was to overcome or at least reduce the pain in his heart. Because he was a committed Christian, things like drinking, although tempting especially at his young age, were out. He felt reluctant to allow himself to become close to anyone, and therefore shared his burden to no one.

Contrary to what he's been expecting, he fell again to sin. Enticed with the worldly passions, he began to associate himself with his former friends--what he considered his "barkadas". Until such a time that Satan finally caught him in his net. He was so weak, frustrated, confused and no one seems to understand him. People around him whom he considered his "spiritual leaders" could not take the reality that he fell to a deep abyss. He could not feel the love and care from them. Or maybe he could not grasp it that time. He became rebellious, letting himself be influenced with things that are in this world.

And here comes the "turning point" of his life--he then realized that he has to stand up, to be firm in his faith, to show the world that God is able in his life. He met persons who helped him a lot to become strong in the Lord. In spite of these, there is still longing in his heart that is unmet. The only method he'd found that could soothe his throbbing soul was to become active in the ministry. Once more, he attended church regularly, pray as often as he could, participate in his para-church ministry where he is involved, and the list goes on. In his understanding of things, he was turning to God for help. He was renewing his mind through time in the Word. Whenever the images of his past crowded into his mind, whenever the circumstances that lead to his downfall flooded him, he quickly reached his Bible and read verses. He quickly prays to the Lord that all those things fade away totally from his memory and he firmly believes that God will answer. For three years, he'd been following this procedure. As a result, he became nervous. His life presented him with a level of pain he was determined not to feel.

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The young man obviously wanted to relieve the ache in his soul that comes from unsatisfied longings. When the pain of rejection, isolation, failure, and weakness began to creep in his stomach, he feels like he's approaching to death. His very survival seems to depend on numbing the pain and finding some way to feel better. Eating, going with his friends, masturbating, studying, joining church activities, etc.--the young man got to do something to avoid the paralyzing ache he fear so deeply. And that was a routine for three years! The simple fact that he has to face is this: Something is wrong with everything! No matter how closely he walks with the Lord, he cannot escape the impact of a disappointing and sometimes evil world. A core sadness that will not go away is evidence not of spiritual immaturity, but of honest living in a sad world.

Now that the young man has found his strength and joy of his salvation in the Lord, he is enjoying God's presence with gladness. He draws hope from others who are learning how God meet them in their struggles. He longs for what he designed to enjoy: It's okay to desire. And he want what he cannot have until Heaven: it's okay to hurt. Jesus said: "If anyone is thirsty, let him come and drink."

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I am thirsty. I long for what I do not have. I'm already a Christian. Insofar as I know my heart, I will follow Him for the rest of my life..
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MAN'S UNSATISFIED LONGINGS
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