Reading through the Bible together

Saturday, May 17, 2014

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When I started seeking God’s will in my life, people greeted me with curiosity during my first few weeks at church.

“What’s your name?”  “Where are you from?”  “How old are you?”  “Are you married?”
When they established that I was 33 years old and single, the questions became more direct. “How can you be so old and not married?”

I explained that being single was good because I was only now seeking God seriously for the first time and I’d probably be facing major problems if I had embarked on this journey already married, most likely to a non-Christian woman.

The answer satisfied my new friends. For about six months. Then they said: “But you’ve been attending church for six months. That’s more than enough time to find a good, Christian wife!”  Now nearly a decade has passed, and I’m still single. I wish God’s will for my life was a clear as it was for Jeremiah’s.

Here’s what God told Jeremiah: “The word of the Lord also came to me, saying, ‘You shall not take a wife, nor shall you have sons or daughters in this place’” (Jeremiah 16:1, 2 NKJV).  God went on to explain that Jeremiah was to remain unwed because a horrible destiny awaited all parents and children born in the land: “They shall die gruesome deaths; they shall not be lamented nor shall they be buried, but they shall be like refuse on the face of the earth. They shall be consumed by the sword and by famine, and their corpses shall be meat for the birds of heaven and for the beasts of the earth” (verse 4).

Now, I don’t know how long God wants me to remain unmarried. I don’t know if my singleness will prevent some horrible fate from befalling my potential family. Even though God hasn’t revealed His thinking to me, He has a plan for me — just like He did for Jeremiah.

Remember what we read in the first chapter of Jeremiah? The Lord told Jeremiah: “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you; before you were born I sanctified you; I ordained you a prophet to the nations” (1:5).

Before we grew into fetuses in our mothers’ wombs, God knew us. Before we were born, God blessed us and called on us to share with others a message of repentance from sin and of hope in His coming.

Prayer: “Dear God, I may not always know Your plan. But I know that You have a plan for me. Keep me at the center of Your will, no matter whether I am single, married, divorced or widowed. My desire is to seek and fulfill that plan to Your glory. Amen.”

Andrew McChesney
Journalist in Russia.