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I have a partner that my children do not like. I keep them separate from the relationship. We love each other and are not married but have an intimate relationship. I can see no other option than to continue sinning.
Thank you so much for your question and for your honesty and openness. I can quite see why this situation is such a problem to you. You do not say why your relationship with their father ended, but I am sure that you all suffered because of it and can well understand that you do not want your children to suffer any more. At the same time, as anyone would, you want to get on with your own life and have a new and fulfilling relationship.
Let me first assure you that God loves you and cares about you and your children. I believe that you care about Him, too, or you would not have contacted us. So let us start with your relationship with God, which is the most important thing of all in your life.
Like every single other human being on this planet, you have sometimes failed to do what is right. Regardless of your current family situation, you and I are sinners because we have failed to love God and others as we should and have often done what we knew to be wrong. This is why Jesus Christ died for us - so that we can be forgiven and brought back into relationship with God.
"God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life" (John 3:16).
I wonder if you have ever decisively confessed and turned from your sins (repented) and put your faith in Jesus Christ as your Saviour and Lord? That is by far your greatest need. Nothing else - neither your relationship with your children nor your relationship with your boyfriend - matters as much. I can tell you that until God really is Lord of your life, nothing else will fall into place.
Sometimes, men and women feel that they cannot allow God to be Lord of their lives because it would cost them another relationship that is precious to them. Perhaps you feel that you cannot submit to God because it would mean losing your boyfriend? I can't tell you what God intends to do in your life, but I can tell you that He can be trusted to do what is best.
Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths. (Proverbs 3:5-6)
Don't try to work it out yourself: trust in God with all your heart and you have His promise that He will make your path straight. If you struggle with the problem, such as holding God at arm's length in case He does something you do not like, you will only get deeper into confusion.
You make it clear from your question that you know already that to sleep with your boyfriend outside marriage is a sin. It is also depriving him, and yourself, of the benefits of a real marriage. If you open this to God's truth and guidance, you will be able to find out whether your relationship is strong enough to cope with reality, or whether it is really only a temporary escape from loneliness. I hope that you will be able to forge a lasting Christian marriage. I wonder if your boyfriend a Christian? If not, tell him about Jesus and pray that he will come to know Jesus as his Lord and Saviour.
There are other issues to be considered. it is common that children notoriously dislike a parent's new partner and much work needs to be done to create good relationships. It may be that you are not really helping them by keeping all this a secret, because they are being deprived of a good and much-needed father figure. Or it could be that you need to listen to their objections and consider whether they are seeing something that you need to see, too. Does someone whose judgement you trust know both you and this man so that you can ask someone else as well as your children? Without knowing much more than I know at the moment, I can't help you with that. It would be a good idea to find a local church and talk to a leader or someone you trust there. You might also consider professional counselling for the whole family.
I do hope this general answer to your question goes some way to helping you find peace with God through Jesus Christ our Lord. If you want to know more about what Jesus has done for you please watch the video on the main part of our site: www.lookingforGod.com
In closing, I want to encourage you to get more involved with your local church. It would be good to speak to a Christian leader or another trusted church individual regarding your question. I know they would be delighted to further answer you as well as offer prayer and support as you continue your spiritual journey:
Please use our Interactive Answer Matrix and feel free to ask another question. Our helpful staff are praying for you and waiting to try and answer to you from the Bible, and will be delighted to tell you more about Jesus Christ the Lord, the Saviour of the world.
*All Scripture references are taken From The English Standard Version of the Holy Bible unless stated otherwise
*If anything in this answer affects you directly, then please feel free to call our confidential prayer line in the UK on 0845 4567729, where trained Christian volunteers will take your call and pray both for you and with you. If you are outside of the UK then you may submit your request for prayer on line at www.ucb.co.uk/prayerline
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