Is there anything I can do?
The answer to the above question may well be "nothing", but I thought I might ask your opinion since you have "been there".
Let me explain. This is not a deconversion story, but I hope you don't mind me posting on this site.
I am deeply concerned about my ex boyfriend who has become involved with a charismatic church which seems to be taking over his life. He claims that he is not at all under their spell, that they are all extremely nice and normal people, that he is perfectly rational and just as put off as me by those "christian types". Yet he goes to prayer meetings and church services most days of the week, has admitted that he has recently begun talking in tongues, says that he is experiencing visits by the Holy Spirit, is preparing to be baptised to be born again, and marvels about the church leaders having the gift of revelation (they keep telling him that he is blessed by God, that he is destined to greater things, that his life will soon fall into place...). What's more he is now convinced that illnesses are demons that possess people and that prayer and exorcism has the power to heal. Well, to me this sounds like he has simply totally lost the plot and gone mad. But of course he just thinks that I just don' t want to see the truth and urges me to let God and Jesus into my life As it happens, I am quite happy with the state of my own spirituality, probably best described as agnostic. I cannot rule out that there is a God, but neither can I really believe it. I sometimes pray, but it's probably more a conversation I am having with myself. The point is that I feel no need to be saved and don't even find the prospect of an eternal afterlife particulary appealing. I enjoy this life as it is. But I am digressing, back to my ex boyfriend...
It is true that since he has "found God" he seems much more peaceful and at one with himself. Which in itself is of course great, but yet I cannot help but think that this whole thing is a disaster. You see, he is a lovely, honest person but he is unable to live in the real world. It would take me to long to explain all the ins and outs of his history and personality and our relationship, but suffice it to say that he has great difficulty in taking responsibility for anything in his life and finds it very difficult to take a decision of any kind. He is 39 years old and has been unemployed for years, always hatching great schemes about how to get rich quick which invariably all fail. For the last few years he has been living off the proceeds of the sale of a flat that his mother had bought for him some time ago, but this money is disappearing fast and he will have absolutely nothing left in a couple of years at the most. At this point I should probably say that he no longer lives here (that is London) He moved to Budapest about a year ago, basically to escape all the pressures he felt here (and that includes me) He went to Budapest because he knew some people there and started going to this Charismatic Church a couple of weeks after his arrival and well, he hasn't done much else since.
I know that he was and is lost, so in a way it is not a surprise to me that he has fallen for this Born Again Christianity stuff. I suppose it gives him great comfort because he doesn't have to deal with reality and because those people promise him the earth (or should that be "heaven"?) When I was with him, I tried very hard to encourage him to build a proper life for himself, but needless to say I didn't succeed. I know you can't change people, but do you think there is anything at all that I could do? It breaks my heart to see him sink further and further into this religious madness.
I'd be grateful for any replies and comments.
P.S. Incidentally - he left me. He says that his relationship with God is all he needs and that a woman would just stand in his way of getting closer and closer to him. Can't compete with God, I suppose - thing is, people actually answer back to things. Real relationships are so much more of a challenge...