I have sinned. I lusted after a sister and it progressed so much that we kissed. Right now I am so broken. I have asked God for forgiveness but it seems I can't forgive myself.
I have had this dream of being a gospel teacher and an elder. I've been consciously building myself for this but to be honest I think I lack self-control. I've decided to cut off the relationship and withdraw from social life because I feel so bad and hate myself.
Tomorrow is Sunday and I feel ashamed to go and sit with the saint while stained.
What hurts me more is that she is a new convert and I have failed to be an example to her.
I need encouragement. I can't forgive myself.
"Forgiveness" is a banking term. It means to release someone from a debt that they owe you. So what debt do you think you owe to yourself?
Sin is a debt to God because God tells us not to sin. "For the wages of sin is death" (Romans 6:23). Thus, God has the right to release us from our debt, but we cannot release ourselves.
"Lust" is a strong desire to break a command of God. Thus, when you say that you are lusting for this woman, you are implying that you want to have sex with her without getting married to her. I don't know if that is what you intended to say or whether you just find yourself strongly attracted to her and call the attraction "lust." It is normal for men and women to find some people attractive. It is the attraction that causes us to be bold enough to talk with another person and get to know them. It becomes wrong when you start letting that attraction lead you into imagining committing sin with someone and justifying the sin to yourself. "For this is the will of God, your sanctification; that is, that you abstain from sexual immorality; that each of you know how to possess his own vessel in sanctification and honor, not in lustful passion, like the Gentiles who do not know God" (I Thessalonians 4:3-5).
Kisses can be right or wrong, depending on what is done and with what motives. You are to treat women you are not married to as mothers, aunts, and sisters. Appeal to the older men as fathers, "the younger men as brothers, the older women as mothers, and the younger women as sisters, in all purity" (I Timothy 5:1-2). That last phrase is important: "in all purity."
Allow me to assume that you slipped and allowed your mind to go into territories it doesn't belong. It doesn't mean all is lost. It means that you have to recognize that you are a young man with strong desires and you are dealing with a young woman. You can't trust yourself or your body's instincts. Stay far away from compromising situations. Only met her where other people are around.
If you are interested in marrying her, consider how much you actually know about her and whether you believe she will make a good wife. Too many young men get caught up in a woman's looks and forget there are more important things to consider. If you feel she might make a good wife, then talk to her to see if she thinks you might make a good husband.