Recently my relationship with my boyfriend has ended because he is an unbeliever and wanted me to continue in premarital sex with him which I was not happy with. I still care for him deeply, but all of a sudden I have developed these feelings for this church member, and I do not know him.
We just shake hands as a sign of peace, but we do not talk. I also had two dreams about him; once he was wearing an engagement ring and once, a wedding ring. I’m not sure if it means anything, but could it possibly have a connection to him being my future spouse?
Thanks for writing. I think you’ve done the right thing in breaking up with your unbelieving boyfriend — especially since you were having sex with him. While your long-term goal should be marriage to a believer (see 2 Corinthians 6:14-15), before you start a new relationship with anyone, you should first confess, repent from and seek forgiveness for your sexual sin. If you try to skip this step, you’re setting yourself up for a repeat of the relationship you just left.
As for the man in your church, keep in mind that attraction is merely a starting point. It’s not enough to build a relationship on, and at this point in your journey, it seems to be a distraction and temptation more than anything. You have some serious business to do with the Lord to clear your conscience of your disobedience, not the least of which is misrepresenting your faith and relationship with Christ to your unbelieving ex-boyfriend.
About the dreams: We often dream about things that occupy our waking thoughts. They’re often just extensions of our desires, nothing more. Please don’t infuse them with a significance that’s likely not there. Too many people have made life-altering decisions based on a dream or two with dire consequences.
The Old and New Testaments recount how God used dreams to speak to His followers. Dreams are one way God speaks, even today. Acts 2:16-18 says:
No, this is what was spoken by the prophet Joel:
‘In the last days, God says,
I will pour out my Spirit on all people.
Your sons and daughters will prophesy,
your young men will see visions,
your old men will dream dreams.
Even on my servants, both men and women,
I will pour out my Spirit in those days,
and they will prophesy….’
But dreams aren’t the only way God speaks to us. His primary mode of communicating to us is through Scripture. The possibility for Divine communication via dreams is not a guarantee. If what you’re feeling, based on dreams, contradicts Scripture, you can be certain the dreams are merely wishful thinking.
If you stop thinking about this man during the day, I suspect your thoughts of him while sleeping will diminish. That may sound easier said than done, but the human mind is a powerful thing. You can turn your thoughts elsewhere when he comes to mind. And the more you do so, the less frequently you’ll be tempted to daydream.
Based on what you’ve told me, I think the relationship you should be most focused on right now is that with your pastor (or his wife) or a mentor: someone with whom you can pray for forgiveness and talk with about ways you can avoid sexual sin in the future. They may be able to help you get to the point where you’re ready to start a new romantic relationship with someone who has the potential to be your husband.
I pray this admittedly difficult advice motivates, helps and encourages you.
Copyright 2008 Candice Watters. All rights reserved.