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Page 52

Linda escaped pregnancy, but did she escape the internal consequences of her premarital sexual activity? Can a person ever "get away" with sin?

    weekend and some guys had brought several cases of beer. Linda felt uncomfortable with the loud music, drinking, and joking. She asked Russ once if they could leave, but he became quite angry with her for suggesting that, so she didn't dare ask again.

    Everyone was drinking, also Russ. Linda didn't want to, but she didn't want to embarrass Russ or stand out as being different, and so she had a few beers, too. One thing led to another, and finally she ended up having sex with Russ in one of the bedrooms there that night.

    Russ seemed to lose interest in her after that and her attraction to him also seemed to disappear. At first, she was very worried, but later very thankful that she did not become pregnant.

    A few years later, she met Chris. Their dating years together were wonderful and she happily married him when she was twenty-one. Their marriage was blessed in many ways; they deeply loved one another.

    However, after being married for several years, Linda came to speak to her minister. Between tears and emotional sobs, she poured out her broken heart to him. "I love my husband dearly and I want to enjoy myself with him so badly. But so often, just at the special times when I want to most enjoy our closeness, my mind fills with my first sexual experience. I clearly see Russ! I relive the fears and feelings of that 'first time' - the pangs of conscience, the fear that someone would open the door, the fear that my parents would find out, the fear that I would become pregnant, the feeling of guilt, of being used, and of degrading myself. These feelings overwhelm me and I have to cry. I can't help it! Chris is so loving: he gently asks me what's wrong. But I can't tell him! He would be so deeply hurt. Oh, Reverend, what can I do? What can I do?"

    Can a person ever "get away" with sinning? How can the inner consequences of private sin be greater than the outward consequences of public sin? Which of the previous ten reasons for avoiding premarital sex are illustrated by this story?

    Mr. Parker shared the following confession with a group of teenagers. "Believe me, friends, be careful; avoid premarital sex. I did not. I thought I was so 'clever.' I took precautions. I purchased the necessary means to avoid


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