Unhindered Devotion to God

Jerry Sittser

READ : 1 Corinthians 7:32-35

I say this for your own benefit, not to put any restraint upon you, but to promote good order and unhindered devotion to God. (v. 35)

Like many American fathers, I am a sports dad. Over the years I have attended lots of sporting events involving my kids: track meets, soccer matches, basketball and football games. It makes for a busy, complicated life.

The apostle Paul does not forbid marriage, though he himself never married. He realized that not everyone has the gift of celibacy. Some people are called to marry and have a family, just as others are called to be single. His concern about marriage does not stem from a bias against it. After all, Paul does use marriage as an analogy to describe the love Christ has for the church (Eph. 5:22-23).

The problem with marriage is that we become quickly distracted, which applies just as much to our preoccupation with possessions and jobs and hobbies, even with church work. Paul charges us to weigh every commitment we make in light of our commitment to God, who must remain first and foremost in our lives. We are to live according to good order (right priorities) and display an unhindered devotion to God. We were made for God. He must remain at the center, for married and unmarried alike.

PRAYER God, please be the center of our lives, and remain there. Amen.