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Dear Pastor Susan,
My girlfriend and I live together and when we asked to serve at our church, we were told that we couldn’t until we got married. With the economy the way that it is we can’t really afford to do that. What is the policy at your church and why do churches say they need help then turn it down when it’s offered?

Thank God for bible believing churches! We believe the same as your church. You got to get this part of your life settled, then you move into position. Since you’re a believer, I won’t throw scripture at you but here is the best way I can explain it.

You see, Jesus came and bought you with a price. He laid his life on the line for you. He still gave you the choice to follow him or not but you chose to follow him. That carries with it a certain responsibility. It means that when God says if you love me keep my commandments you agreed to those terms. So since you know his commandments and you took the deal you can’t then say that you receive the gift of salvation but refuse to follow the lead of the Father. The two conflict, as well they should. I know that you said it’s not doable right now to get married due to the economy but I’m unclear why. Marriage is a license at city hall and your Pastor conducting a covenant ceremony.

You don’t get to rent a woman and she doesn’t get to rent you. You don’t get to rent Jesus for just a part of your life. In all cases it’s all or nothing. Don’t be deceived by the message that says it’s all good and you can repent for it later. God put these boundaries in place to save you from heartache and the pain it causes. 2 Corinthians 6 (okay, maybe just a scripture!) says we should not take the grace of God in vain. Yes, you are right the church always needs help but it’s working through a process of perfection (meaning maturity).

I’m really glad to respond to this right now. We are learning all about this in our bible study and I’ll write more about that in a future post. In the meantime, we are praying for you and all of those who find themselves in your shoes. I hope you will do the right thing!