Old habit patterns, bad attitudes, and negative ways of thinking can keep us from reaching our full potential in the Lord. These are the things that the devil uses to keep us stagnant, spinning our wheels, so that we lose out on the blessings God has for us. It is important that we know that Heavenly Father most assuredly has blessings He wants to give us. He desires to bring to manifestation the prayer request we’ve been praying about for a long time, but for some of us, our eyes are blind to what God is doing. We can’t see all the opportunities He’s placed within our paths. They are designed to strengthen us spiritually, but because we can’t see these opportunities to be strengthened in our inner man, we lack the spiritual strength to reach out and grab the blessings with our names on them. This is something that we absolutely must change.
Regarding the complexities and challenges we endure in life, the Apostle Paul prayed this prayer in Ephesians 3:16(NLT), “I pray that from his glorious, unlimited resources he will empower you with inner strength through his Spirit.” Paul is letting us know that we don’t have the strength on our own to endure the stuff the devil throws our way. Jesus Christ told us very plainly in John 15:5 that apart from him, we can’t do anything. Of course, we can accomplish lots of things in the earth through human effort, but Jesus Christ is letting us know that these things won’t amount to anything if he’s not in the equation. They won’t further God’s agenda, and if they don’t further God’s agenda in the earth, then they are not worth doing.
Jesus Christ said in John 6:44(NLT), “For no one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws them to me, and at the last day I will raise them up.” We don’t come to God on our own. He draws us! He chose us long before we knew about Him, and He’s given us a holy calling. God has something for us to do, and no one can do what He has called you to do quite the way you’ll do it. Your calling is unique just as you are unique. It is your purpose within the destiny God has ordained for your life. It is your identity and speaks to the very core of your existence. This is what you must be committed to do and seek as a follower of Christ.
God also wants us to be clear that we can’t fulfill our purpose without the strength that He gives us. It’s impossible without His help. Paul prayed that believers would be filled with the Holy Spirit so that the Spirit would work within us to will and do of God’s good pleasure. We need the Spirit’s strength to overcome everything that is being thrown at us. It is God who empowers us to be a blessing, and without His empowerment, our lives will not be in alignment with His Will.
Many single believers are struggling with the temptation of pre-marital sex and other sexual immoralities. There are sisters who have a deep yearning to be married to the right man, but they have sex with every man they date. God means it when He tells us not to engage in sexual sin. In 1Corinthians 6:15-18(NLT) He tells us, “Don’t you realize that your bodies are actually parts of Christ? Should a man take his body, which is part of Christ, and join it to a prostitute? Never! And don’t you realize that if a man joins himself to a prostitute, he becomes one body with her? For the Scriptures say, “The two are united into one.” But the person who is joined to the Lord is one spirit with him. Run from sexual sin! No other sin so clearly affects the body as this one does. For sexual immorality is a sin against your own body.”
God knows this is a challenging area for many people, and this is why He tells us very plainly that we can’t rely on our own strength. Our strength won’t cut it. We must lean on His strength through the power of the Holy Spirit. We can’t effectively and earnestly pray for God to present us with the treasure of a marital spouse if we have no intention of trusting Him to help us abstain from sexual sin. That would be double-minded. It’s an unstable request. Our prayer must be to grow in the Holy Spirit so that we walk according to his directives and guidance. That should be our main priority.
We can’t do anything without the strength of God in Christ. We need the faith that comes from witnessing the transformation in our lives from our full surrender to the Spirit. We need to see how God responds to our prayers when we ask Him to help us maintain Godliness. And we need the confidence that comes from knowing we can receive instruction from God about our purpose, as He helps us carry it forth like clockwork. So, understand that Heavenly Father isn’t looking for us to straighten our crooked paths before we get married, He’s looking for us to allow Him to do it from within. ■
Scripture quotations marked (NLT) are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Wheaton, Illinois 60189. All rights reserved.
“Straighten It Out before Marriage, Or After?” written for findchristianman.wordpress.com. Copyright©2021. All rights reserved. All done to the glory of God through Jesus Christ, our Lord