Hi Glen,

I'm a 20 year Christian male that is suffering the affects of child sex
abuse which was incest it happened two times. I ask myself why did God let
this happen to me. Now I'm so angry that I don't believe in anything
related in God. Like if I'm going to heaven or hell when I die. How do I
restore my faith in God?


Hi Falling,
I'm so sorry this happened to you. This kind of thing shouldn't happen to anyone. Most people don't realize the emotional damage they can cause by doing this. I want to spend a little time working through a few things with you, to try and help you find your faith.

First of all, the person who did this to you wasn't God. I know you're aware of this but I thought I'd put it in the open. We'll get to God in a moment, but let's discuss that person, first. Usually, when incest occurs, there is an emotional tie between the victim and the molester that makes it even more difficult to recover. A loving relationship was twisted into something else and this was wrong.

Second, let's talk about you. It's clear from your email you know molestation is wrong. You're "suffering the affects" of molestation, but you're not molesting. I don't know if you still see this person at family gatherings, but I know people who do, yet still survive and recover. What they do that you're going to have to do to get past this is, forgive your molester every time resentment wells up. Another thing you'll have to learn to do is forgive yourself. You didn't do anything wrong. No matter what you felt during or after the experiences, you're not guilty of anything. There may be times you're tempted to do similar things...forgive yourself for the thoughts and move on mentally to something positive. You can make it through. You don't have to suffer the affects of this forever. The psychologists are wrong...you can be healed.

This brings us to God, and your main question, "How do I restore my faith in God?" When I was in my teens and early 20's, I hadn't read much of the Bible. Somehow I got the impression that God was a combination of Santa Clause and Superman. He would give me whatever I wanted and would protect me from everything bad. When He didn't follow through on my expectations I knew He was very different from what I'd been told. I went through almost 20 years of walking away from Him until He finally led me back in a way I would understand who He really is, rather than the fairy-tale version I learned in church. Hopefully, I can save you 20 years.

Once I read the Bible for myself, I realized some things about God and man. I learned that all the hero's in the Bible were faulty humans just like me. Abraham tried to fulfill God's promise through someone other than Sarah. Jacob cheated his brother. Moses committed murder. Samson couldn't control his temper. David committed murder and adultery....etc. All the early Christians continued to sin. The Bible even records Paul and Peter as having sinned since their salvation. I realized for the first time that these icons of Godliness were no better than me. I also learned that God's best champions suffered greatly at the hands of God's enemies. Abel was murdered, Joseph went to prison, Moses was exiled for 40 years, David was hunted by king Saul, the prophets were murdered. In fact, Jesus told us we would be brought before judges, beaten and executed for His sake, and that it would continue to get worse until He returned. Just read Hebrews chapter 11 to find out how the early Christians fared. All of this is just the opposite of what I was told as an early teen in church. It wasn't just man, though, I learned some things about God, too.

The God in the Bible loves us enough to let us choose to love Him. After all, if you force someone to love you, that's something like rape, isn't it? God set up a system where each person could choose a relationship with Him. The Bible says sickness and death entered the world through man's sin (decision to not follow God). The perversions and violence we're experiencing right now are a result of humans choosing to not be with God. God never promises in the Bible to keep us from harm. He only promises that there is nothing man can do to us, not even murder, that can separate us from His love. He promises, if we choose Him, to keep us with Him in paradise forever. He promises trouble for the good and the bad, alike, while we're on earth. He lived in that trouble and was killed at our hand to provide a way for us to be with Him. He uses that trouble and hurt we humans cause, to bring each of us to a point of decision. God never wastes a hurt. Do we accept His love and His sacrifice for us or do we go our own way?
This is the point you're at right now. I don't believe you lost faith in God. How could you even ask the question you did without faith? Someone without faith wouldn't care anything about God. You clearly care. Instead, I believe you've lost faith in the fairy-tale God. That's great, because it leaves room for faith in the real God. True faith is following God when He isn't doing what we expect. Hebrews chapter 11 describes faith and what the experiences of God's faithful people were. I'm excited for you, because your questions tell me you're on the path of the truly faithful. Choose the real God and He will heal you of your past hurt and enable you to live a life of joy in Him, no matter what happens on earth.