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How Can I Stop Living a Double Life?

How Can I Stop Living a Double Life?

 At times, some worshippers of God wonder whether living by Bible standards is worth the time and effort it takes. (Psalm 73:2, 3) They might even begin experimenting with things that conflict with Jehovah’s laws and then try to deceive other worshippers by hiding their bad conduct.

 This article is designed to help those who may have gone down that road but want to stop their deceptive course.

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 What is a double life?

 Leading a double life means that when you are with your peers who don’t obey Jehovah, you do things that you know are wrong; but when you are with fellow worshippers, you act as though you want to serve Jehovah. It is as if you had two lives, and each involved wearing a mask.

 “When you lead a double life, you’re hiding something from both sides, so no one knows the real you. Ultimately, a double life is a double betrayal.”—Erin.

 Did you know? A double life can include engaging in private conduct that you know Jehovah disapproves of.

 “When I was 14, I started looking at immoral images on the Internet. When in front of others, I acted as if I hated pornography, but in my heart I knew that I didn’t.”—Nolan.

 Bible principle: “No one can slave for two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will stick to the one and despise the other.”—Matthew 6:24.

 Does leading a double life make me a bad person?

 Not necessarily. Of course, some people have decided that they don’t want to live by Bible standards. But is that really true of you? Or is there an underlying factor, such as:

  •   You feel awkward when you stand out as different from your peers.

  •   You feel that you have more in common with your schoolmates than with those in your congregation.

  •   You feel that you just don’t have the strength and ability to follow all of God’s commandments.

 “I think that some young ones who lead a double life feel more comfortable with people who don’t share their Christian values because they have a need to fit in, anywhere.”—David.

 Of course, none of these factors justifies leading a double life. Still, it helps explain how even good people can get ensnared. If that has happened to you, what can you do?

 How can I stop living a double life?

  1.  1. Examine your life as it stands right now. Ask yourself: ‘Is this really the person I want to be? If not, where could my choices lead me?’

     Bible principle: “The shrewd person sees the danger . . . , but the inexperienced keep right on going and suffer the consequences.”—Proverbs 27:12.

  2.  2. Come clean. Discuss your situation with your parents or a mature friend who respects Jehovah’s laws. Likely they will be glad you came to them for help. And they will be proud to see that you want to do the right thing!

    If you have fallen into the deep pit of a double life, call for help

     “Admitting my course to others was one of the hardest things I’ve ever had to do, but once I did it, I felt tremendous relief.”—Nolan.

     Bible principle: “The one covering over his transgressions will not succeed, but whoever confesses and abandons them will be shown mercy.”—Proverbs 28:13.

  3.  3. Accept the consequences. Remember, if you have been hiding something from your parents and from the congregation, you have undermined their trust. As a result, your parents or the congregation elders may impose some restrictions on you. Accept those consequences, and resolve to conduct yourself “honestly in all things” from this point on.—Hebrews 13:18.

     Bible principle: “Listen to counsel and accept discipline, in order to become wise in your future.”—Proverbs 19:20.

  4.  4. Develop a strong belief in God’s love for you. Because Jehovah loves us, he is fully aware of every one of our actions. So, if you live a double life, he knows it and it saddens him. Yet, “because he cares for you,” he is eager to help you correct your path.—1 Peter 5:7.

     Bible principle: “The eyes of Jehovah are roving about through all the earth to show his strength in behalf of those whose heart is complete toward him.”—2 Chronicles 16:9.