Tuesday, August 19, 2014

The Single Life: Part 2

1 Corinthians 7:26-35 ~ "Because of the present crisis, I think that it is good for a man to remain as he is.  Are you pledged to a woman?  Do not seek to be released.  Are you free from such a commitment?  Do not look for a wife.  But if you do marry, you have not sinned; and if a virgin marries, she has not sinned.  But those who marry will face many troubles in this life, and I want to spare you this.  

What I mean, brothers and sisters, is that the time is short.  From now on those who have wives should live as if they do not; those who mourn, as if they did not; those who are happy, as if they were not; those who buy something, as if it were not theirs to keep; those who use the things of the world, as if not engrossed in them.  For this world in its present form is passing away.  

I would like you to be free from concern.  An unmarried man is concerned about the Lord's affairs - how he can please the Lord.  But a married man is concerned about the affairs of this world - how he can please his wife - and his interests are divided.  An unmarried woman or virgin is concerned about the Lord's affairs: Her aim is to be devoted to the Lord in both body and spirit.  But a married woman is concerned about the affairs of this world - how she can please her husband."

In these verses, Paul is saying to stay where you are.  If you are committed, stay that way.  If you are not, don't look for a husband or wife.  Stay as you are.  Time is short.  Live this life to the fullest, and focus on eternity.  Those who are unmarried can focus on the Lord's affairs and devote their lives to Him.  Paul recognized the urgency in sharing the Good News, and he was looking to single people to reach out to those who haven't yet heard.

So what does that mean for us?  What do we do with this?  First, ask yourself a couple of questions.

How am I currently spending my time?

How should I be spending my time?

Do a little self-evaluation.  Think about how you are currently spending your time.  What should stay, and what should you get rid of?  Then think about how you should be spending your time.  What should you add?

If you aren't sure about how you should be spending your time, think about what strengths and gifts God has given you.  What desires has He placed on your heart?  Spend some time getting closer to our Lord, through prayer, reading, studying, worship, and fellowship with others.  Let Him speak to you and lead you to the things He wants for you.

Remember that even if you are doing good things, they may not be the best things.  This is one thing that I really needed to evaluate in my life.  I was doing things that were good or helpful to other people, but they just weren't the best that God had planned for me.  I wasn't using my strengths and gifts.  I was at a point in my life where I was just saying "yes" to everything, and just wanted to help people, without asking God if it was something I should do.

I can't tell you exactly how you should be using your time, as we are all different.  However, I can tell you that your time should be spent in a way that honors God, and that you should be continuously doing things to bring yourself closer to Him.  Some things in my life that God has been calling me to do most recently are: working on friendships/fellowship, being hospitable, hosting/leading Bible studies, serving in my church and community, and taking care of myself - spiritually, emotionally, and physically.  Let God lead, and He will lead you right to the best things for your life.  Even better, you will find that you enjoy the things He has planned!  God wants good things for us.  He loves us!

One thing recently that has helped me prioritize and decide what belongs and what doesn't belong in my life is creating a life purpose statement.  I had the opportunity to create my life purpose statement while participating in a workshop put on by a friend and her mother, who happened to be a life coach.  It was definitely worth my time!  Now I can take my life purpose statement and use it to determine whether a certain opportunity is for me or not.  If it doesn't line up with my life purpose, then it probably isn't priority.

Consider creating your own life purpose statement.  Check out Think Simple Now for help in discovering and creating your life purpose statement.  There are 15 questions to really help you dig deep and learn more about yourself.  I recommend going through the questions, even if you don't get to creating your own life purpose statement right now.  It will definitely be worth your time!

My life purpose is to reach and connect with women and children on a spiritual level.  I want to share with them Christ's love, and empower, motivate, and encourage them to become who God has called them to be.  I want to nurture them and give them the resources and support to be a true follower of Christ.

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