Category Archives: Marriage

Reflections on Married Life: My Single Life

My single years have so far been the most productive in my faith. Prior to falling in love with Kevin, I fell in love with Jesus Christ. I had time to serve God with greater flexibility when I only had one schedule to consider – mine. I found him. Remember the Creator in the days of your youth. I enjoyed that time in singlehood and I enjoyed praying to God to find me spouse and to bless my future marriage. I can’t say that one part of my life is better than the other because both were given by God and through both, God walked by my side. Married life is wonderful, but don’t waste away single life fantasizing about married life. Single life is also a blessing, so use it to be productive for Christ. I had crushes and I dated other guys briefly, and I thank God that none of those experiences led to sin. Those experiences are things I want to share with my younger sisters and brothers in Christ to let them know the dangers of college dorms and even “casual” relationships and how God protected me.

Now I really look forward to serving God with my new partner, but this might take some time as even the Israelite army in the Old Testament excused soldiers from active duty for one year from their wedding.

Reject Rehoboam’s Example

Introduction

The way we can relate to the ancient biblical kings is understanding that we are kings ourselves. As a result of what Jesus has done, we have been made kings:

“and from Jesus Christ, the faithful witness, the firstborn from the dead, and the ruler over the kings of the earth. To Him who loved us and washed us from our made us kings and sins in His own blood, and has made us kings and priests to His God and Gather, to Him be glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen” (Rev 1:5-6).

“And they sang a new song, saying, ‘You are worthy to take the scroll, and to open its seals; for You were slain, and have redeemed us to God by your blood out of every tribe and tongue and people and nation, and have made us kings and priests to our God; and we shall reign on earth” (Rev 5.9-10).

“even when we were dead in trespass, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved), and raised us up together, and made us sit together in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus” (Eph 2:5-6).

There is a saying that goes along these lines: A person who has enough sense would learn from their own mistakes. But a wise person would learn from the mistakes of other people without themselves having to go through it and taste the same consequences. So let us look into the story of Rehoboam and learn from his mistakes to be wise.
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Ruth: How to be a single, dating Christian (woman)

Ruth worked hard at her job, staying into the evening until she had finished beating out the grain she had collected.  She is a biblical example of a woman who spent time to develop her career skills, a nod to the many sisters who pursue graduate degrees or career promotions. She did not, however, ignore the other aspects of her life. As a single woman, Ruth had her hands full with multiple responsibilities–her mother-in-law, financial duty, and a budding relationship.

Ruth shared her wages with her family, Naomi, and took care of Naomi’s needs.  While many youths starting jobs and careers will pour their earnings and free time into entertainment, better clothes, bigger flatscreen TVs, or other self-centered products, Christian youths should remember God’s standard in their spending priority.  Perhaps we can hire a lawn mower for our aging parents or buy groceries for them once a month.  When we remember our parents, God will remember us.

In addition to maintaining a connection with a parent, she also started a romantic connection.  While the student spiritual convocations teach high school and younger youths to abstain from dating, there is also a time to date and we read about Ruth during that appropriate time: when one is ready to continue life’s journey with a partner in marriage.  Ruth carried on a courtship while she also kept busy gleaning grain, so working on a career or education is not mutually exclusive with taking out the time to date.  We should accept opportunities of courtship, or at least consider them and putting them in prayer. Ruth listened to Naomi’s suggestion of Boaz, which requires stepping outside her comfortable routine and into the unknown–as we might have to when we talk to a church marriage coordinator or accept a brother’s invitation to start an email correspondence or chat over coffee.

One of the greatest lessons I learned from Ruth is to follow God’s standard for finding a husband. Ruth had a duty to marry her husband’s relative, just like we have a duty to marry a member in the True Jesus Church. Boaz was older, and Ruth had the pick of younger men in the field or finding a man in her hometown. For sisters, the men we meet in the world may be more educated, wealthier, or more handsome than church brothers we know, but what use of a companion would he be if he couldn’t share in our joy of experiencing the Holy Spirit and if he couldn’t lift up our faith and pray with us when we’re feeling down. Just like God led Ruth to Boaz in the land of Canaan, we can trust that God will lead us to the right brother in True Jesus Church.

Once Ruth starts a relationship with Boaz, she demonstrates the Biblical principle that the purpose of dating is to get married. This couple seeks the counsel of elders and the next of kin for permission to get married. Instead of drawing out their courtship, they were wise to seek out any barriers as soon as possible. Dating for too long, more than one or two years, makes breaking up much harder when the couple and their friends and family are emotionally, and unfortunately for the couple perhaps even physically, entangled. But if we treat our boyfriends and girlfriends with purity and aim to draw closer to God together, then a break up is not a shameful matter, but rather a praiseworthy moment where we can thank God for helping us to grow through this relationship and for finding out that we are not compatible before it’s too late, like after tying the knot.

Ruth is an excellent role model for how a modern Christian woman, and also man, can glorify God during singlehood. It is a time for us to develop a caring relationship with our parents, as well as allowing ourselves to develop godly romantic relationships (one at a time, of course).

Being Wives

Here’s a statement that I read recently that made me think twice. Originally it was addressed to single Christian women. But a similar statement could be posed to the single brothers.

“Do you want to get married, or do you want to be a wife?”

Both questions seem one and the same–resulting in the same wedding ceremony and marriage. But it’s the second that makes us think about our attitude going into marriage. Is it self, or is it service? Is it passive reception, or active giving?

And after a little bit of thought–what about Christ and his church? Are we just smug on being betrothed to Him? Or are we willing to be a wife?

On Relationships (Yup, the girl/boy variety)

bread1.jpg“My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge..”

(Says the Lord – Hosea 4:6)

For so long now, it is a plain fact that youths in our church have been in some sense destroyed on an emotional level due to their lack of knowledge when it comes to boy/girl relationships. On so many occasions, God has had to witness His children getting hurt and surely something isn’t quite right here. Many of my friends (and myself, I’ll admit) have been affected by this phenomenon and I have a feeling it has sadly become a norm within the church. It is, however, a problem we can do something about. I don’t believe people generally set out to hurt each other intentionally; sometimes it’s just a matter of understanding what God says concerning this issue. Now, I’m not saying that my take on relationships is better than yours (whatever yours is), but maybe there are other ways of dealing with this and it sure can’t hurt to look at it from another perspective, right? Bearing in mind, “Everything is permissible for me – but not everything is beneficial.” (1 Corinthians 6:12).

Actually a lot of my convictions are already neatly and specifically summed up in the book I Kissed Dating Goodbye, by Joshua Harris. (Yeah corny title but recommended reading). For those of you who have not read it, here are some brief points that might help you realign your attitude towards girl/guy relationships for the good of all parties and ultimately for God’s glory. Continue reading