Oh my goodness! This week marks the halfway point of this study! I cannot believe that we have gotten to this point. I am so excited!
This is week has been crazy. I can hardly believe that it is Monday again. The week has just flown by. I am so thankful for everyday, but man time really is going by faster the older I get.
This past weekend was full of so many great things. I got to help celebrate a very special boy’s first birthday. Yesterday, both church services were fabulous. The Spirit moved in a mighty way. I was given the opportunity to share my testimony in youth service, which is always an awesome experience. To quote Pastor Nathan, when you tell your story, lives are changed. There is no way I would be where I am without the love of Jesus Christ.
I hope you all enjoyed your week and are still gleaning important things from the challenges. I also hope this coming week is no different.
Let’s get down to business.
1 Corinthians 7:20-40
I have to admit that reading this section was a bit confusing for me. At first sight, it seems like a big, long list of don’ts. Like most Scripture, there is way more to it than that.
Each one should remain in the condition in which he was called. (1 Corinthians 7:20)
When we hear the call of Christ, it is important we don’t make any rash decisions. Unless you are doing something immoral or that causes you harm, you should continue what you are doing. This does not mean stay where you are spiritually, but vocationally. Every new believer feels called to tell everyone about their new found Savior. Sometimes this leads to us putting the cart before the horse. While God does cause us to make difficult decisions, He also wants us to be smart. Serve where you are. Any work can be Christian work if you are willing to share the Gospel.
You were bought with a price; do not become slaves of men. (1 Corinthians 7:23)
At the time 1 Corinthians was written, slavery was common across the Roman Empire. This scripture serves as a reminder of just what Christ has done for us. He made the ultimate sacrifice. He put our lives before His own. He was treated, as we deserve to be treated.
It is easy to become slaves to sin. Little compromises turn into giant moral failures. Because we have been bought with a price, this sin no longer has a hold on us. We have been given the power to overcome because of the Spirit living inside of us. Even though in Romans Paul tells us we are slaves of Christ, this actually means we gain our freedom.
I want you to be free from anxieties… (1 Corinthians 7:32)
Like I stated earlier in this post and in the previous one, focus on serving where God has you now. If you are single, use the time to grow closer to God. If you are married, do not neglect your responsibilities I the name of the Lord.
While it seems Paul is constantly trying to talk people getting out of married, I think his intention is to warn others that marriage is not the be all end all. A lot of people think that marriage will solve all of their problems, and that is far from the truth. Marriage will not solve loneliness, sexual temptation, satisfaction of deep emotional needs, and it definitely will not eliminate life’s difficulties.
I say this for your own benefit, not to lay any restraint upon you, but to promote good order and to secure your undivided devotion to the Lord. (1 Corinthians 7:35)
In this chapter of Esther, we begin to see the culmination of Mordecai’s patience. King Xerxes has difficulty sleeping so he calls for his servants to read to him the records of his reign. During this time, he learns of Mordecai’s good deed. While this may seem oddly coincidental, this gives us an example of how God is always working in the background of our lives. While it may seem that we are getting nowhere, God is working out a plan of which we have no knowledge. We must remain patient and trust that the Lord is going to follow through even when it doesn’t happen as quickly as we think it should.
While we see Mordecai be rewarded, we also see the beginning of Haman’s fall. Haman goes to the king expecting to be told to hang Mordecai instead he is told to reward him. Once again, Haman’s pride gets the better of him. Remember that our focus should be on praying for our enemies. We should not be focused on gaining revenge. If they have truly done us wrong and not just hurt our pride, God will deal with them. It is not our job to defend ourselves. It is our job to stand firm on the word and show the love of Christ.
1. Practice being content. As silly as it sounds, practice makes perfect. If you go through the reasons you are thankful to be where you are, the bitterness about not moving forward begins to subside. Like the old song says, “Count your blessings. Name them one by one.”
2. Forgive the person you’ve been holding a grudge against and ask them for forgiveness. Last week we looked in our hearts for business. This week it’s time to forgive and be forgiven. When you go to that person that drives you crazy, do not come from a place condemnation. You must come from a place of love. Do not act accusatory. Be humble.
I am so thankful the Lord is choosing to use this blog for His glory.
Remember to use #prepareyourheart on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.
Also remember that you are not alone. There are people all around you that love you and are praying for you. There are people who will help if you need it. You just have to ask.
The readings for next week are Colossians 3:1-11 and Esther 7.
I am praying you have a good week and a fantastic holiday weekend. Be smart and be safe.