My feelings are not God. God is God. My feelings do not define truth. God’s word defines truth. My feelings are echoes and responses to what my mind perceives. And sometimes - many times - my feelings are out of sync with the truth. When that happens - and it happens every day in some measure - I try not to bend the truth to justify my imperfect feelings, but rather, I plead with God: Purify my perceptions of your truth and transform my feelings so that they are in sync with the truth.
Preparing for Marriage during Sanctifying Singleness: Part 2
If you missed Part 1 here’s the link! http://jasminecrystal.tumblr.com/post/12867969937/preparing-for-marriage-during-sanctifying-singleness
As John Owen said, “Kill sin or it will be killing you.” As followers of Christ, we are supposed to fight the good fight (1 Timothy 6:12). We are not to justify our sin and are commanded to “put to death what is earthly in you.” (Colossians 3:5)
I’ve noticed that there are several sins common to singles (this is a generalization) and I wanted to address them.
The cycle typically goes like this:
Self pity for being single -> leads to complaining -> impatience (you want it now) ->leads to bitterness and resentment at God for “withholding” someone from you-> selfishness (due to independent tendencies)-> pride (you know better than God does and you want it now)
How to make war against sin?
1) Preach the gospel to yourself: You need to preach the gospel to yourself every day. Stop listening to yourself. Jesus died for your sin so that you might live (Galatians 2:20). He died for your self-pity, your comparative righteousness, your bitterness, your complaining heart. Don’t feed your sin. I know it’s really hard but you are never alone in this. Jesus was tempted in every way that we were. He had desires too but never succumbed to them (Hebrews 4:15).
“The gospel is the only remedy to our sins, and looking at the glory of God is the only way to obey him through Christ.”
Everything you need was bought by Jesus and He will fulfill every promise on your behalf. Phil 4:19 says that “God will supply all your needs.” God is for you and will take care of you we are his children. He will provide for us.
2) Pray: Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God- Philippians 4:6
One of my favorite quotations is,“My feelings are not God. God is God. My feelings do not define truth. God’s word defines truth. My feelings are echoes and responses to what my mind perceives. And sometimes - many times - my feelings are out of sync with the truth. When that happens - and it happens every day in some measure - I try not to bend the truth to justify my imperfect feelings, but rather, I plead with God: Purify my perceptions of your truth and transform my feelings so that they are in sync with the truth.”- Piper
- Pray that the Lord will purify and transform your feelings. To sanctify them in the truth (John 17:17)
- Pray for a repentant heart. The Holy Spirit kills sin.
- Pray for grace to trust in God more
- Pray that you will love all your sisters and brothers in Christ in a selfless and humble way
- Pray that God will align your desires with His, your Will with His
- Pray for that He will give you patience and steadfastness during this time
- Pray to embrace your God given role
- Pray that God will grant you the courage and boldness to pursue her in a godly manner (men)
- Pray that He will give you discernment in finding a godly spouse
- Pray that You will grow and be able to be a servant leader (men)
- Pray to cultivate inner beauty (women)
- Pray for godly, older mentors
3) Strong accountability will help in your fight against sin. I suggest that you should have a close brother or sister in Christ (of the same gender) to keep you accountable. I think it’s a wonderful blessing to have both genders as friends. It’s great to fellowship, encourage, and spur one another on in love. However, when it comes to discipleship and accountability, you should be very careful in discerning what you should tell. [For example, a man cannot talk to a woman about his struggles with lust when she has struggles with her body image/acceptance. You need someone you can confess sin to and point you to Jesus. It would be different if you were both sharing what God has been teaching you or mutual struggles with sins like worrying (still be cautious). ] Also, an accountability partner will be able to rebuke you in love (Ephesians 4:15) and give you biblical advice. “Accountability isn’t primarily a finger pointing in the face but an arm around the shoulder.” -Burk Parsons
John Piper in his sermon ‘Be killing sin or sin will be killing you’ says that “You must live in such a way that God will be magnified, that God will get the glory. Live the life in the power that God supplies so that you’re not the centerpiece and God is the centerpiece when people are watching you.”
This world sees singleness as an opportunity to hook up with whoever you want and party around. It is a complete counter-cultural thing to use your singleness as a time to get involved in a church ministry, prepare for marriage, pray, and fight sin. readers The narrow path is always going to be very hard (Matthew 7:13).
On a personal side-note: I want to be open with my readers and I can empathize with you. As a college student living in Orange County where promiscuity is the norm, many people have given me a very hard time on being single. Most of them say things like, “Wow!!! You of all people?! I can’t believe you’ve been single since birth.” I know what it’s like to get backhanded comments, endless questions, and being the third wheel for the millionth time. [Every time I’m tempted to complain or feel resentment, I remind myself that I will not rush the Author and Perfecter of Time. Everything rests upon His Sovereign Timing.]The main reason is because not many guys are theologically mature or biblically sound to lead a woman. So to all of you men reading this: Read your Bible, know your doctrine, pray, grow in sanctification, get a job, and fight against sin. And keep doing this when you’re married.
It’s extremely rare to find someone who quietly rests in the goodness of God, waits on His timing, and glorifies Him throughout singleness. People do take notice of that and it leaves a lasting impression. Trying to live a life for the Lord, having a high view of marriage, and striving to stay pure speaks volumes to an unbelieving world. The darker it is outside, the brighter the light shines. As my friend said, “They will know that you’re taking it very seriously, which adds to the authenticity of your desire to glorify God in your singleness to exemplify the gospel in your marriage. “