Paul's Advice on Dealing with Sadness, Happiness, and Possessions
While reading 1 Corinthians 7 this morning, I was struck by how specific v. 30 is. Paul’s reminding us that whether we’re sad or happy or buying things (!), that we’re not to focus on our circumstances or possessions more than God. Then v. 31 goes on to explain this is because this world will soon pass away.
But let me say this, dear brothers and sisters: The time that remains is very short. So from now on, those with wives should not focus only on their marriage. Those who weep or who rejoice or who buy things should not be absorbed by their weeping or their joy or their possessions. Those who use the things of the world should not become attached to them. For this world as we know it will soon pass away. (1 Corinthians 7:29-31)
As I’ve been attending church all my life, I know these truths. Yet when those seasons have come, of extreme joy, pain, new handbag release … even as recently, as last year I could be so easily distracted. But focusing on these things never brought satisfaction … focusing on joy brought pride, focusing on pain brought self-pity / self-righteousness, focusing on handbags brought covetousness.
If you’re new here (welcome! ☺️), last year brought the biggest trial of my life and I had to make a decision … was I going to ask God to pull me out of the mess or was I going to try doing it myself? I chose God (best choice ever 🙏) and finally surrendered 100%. Gone were years of living as a 75% Christian … God help me to never go back! And through the healing process, he gently showed me, step by step, what it meant to live for him, to pursue holiness. To release the things I’d put in front of him. To live with faith, hope, and joy.
Who knows how much time we have left but whether it’s 1 year or 1,000 years these verses remind us that overly focusing on ourselves and our stuff is a waste of time. In this current crisis and afterwards, I pray that we meditate on Paul’s advice and bring it to God. Let’s ask Him if there are any things / areas in our lives that we’re too attached to. And I pray we can be open, even if it’s uncomfortable, and ask God to pour his truth into us and then act on what he says.
God will never tell us to do something, to let go of something, if it’s not for our best. It’s crazy / amazing that by focusing more on God than ourselves … ultimately we’re happier and more fulfilled, walking with him, fulfilling his plan, moving closer to the glorious day when we will see him face to face.
I pray we keep encouraging each other to pursue Christ wholeheartedly, in this season and all seasons to come. ❤️