Sunrise Autumn 2018

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n a generation where everything around you, the media, family, friends and culture are constantly trying to influence you into changing your ‘single’ status to ‘in a relationship’ as quickly as possible. This article is written to inspire you, get you thinking, enlighten you, help improve your mindset and therefore your attitude, address sensitive issues and get you to walk in the fullness of your singlehood as God purposed. So here goes! Be in a Relationship What I mean here is to be in a relationship with yourself and with the Almighty God. If you don’t love yourself first, how can you love someone else? Love is an action word and you can’t give what you don’t have. Love for yourself must come first because only then can you really love someone else. From the story of Ruth and Boaz we see that Boaz was a man of God and we can see this in the conversation he had with Ruth, how he respected, protected and prayed for her in Ruth 2: 8-14. Boaz was also a man of order, he wanted to do things Gods way which we see in Ruth 3: 7-15. When Ruth presented herself to him, he did not take advantage of her, he protected her purity and reputation in verse 11. He did not just not marry her in haste, he realised there was a closer relative that could claim her, and this needed to be addressed after which he could finally make her his wife. Anyone in a genuine relationship with God will love to serve God. It should make you uncomfortable when you don’t contribute in any way to the work of God, if you don’t feel this way, check yourself. (Activity ) In what ways can you draw closer to God? Go ahead and do it Self-Awareness: Allow God to Work on You This one is loaded as there are many aspects to your life. You have to be intentional about improving every aspect of it or it’s easy to miss out on issues you

might have that could cause problems they might not have finished well. when you get married. (Activity) The word ‘BEAUTIFUL’ can also be interpreted as BEAUTIFUL, what can be How do you treat people? seen here ‘BE’ , ‘U’, ‘FUL’ which means when you’re beautiful, you’re ‘FUL’ of ‘U’, Are you responsible, trustworthy, honest, be who God made you to be. You are respectful, fair, do you have integrity? also chosen, royalty, holy and peculiar. So begin to act like it! Expect that when Financial and Emotional Maturity you’re being you not everyone will ac- Ask God for the spirit of wisdom and cept you but that doesn’t matter, the self- control when it comes to finances. right people will. Misunderstandings linked to finances has caused a lot of problems in marriages. It’s best to begin to practice Be Honest with Yourself now how to handle, manage and mulAnother way to be self-aware is to look tiply money. Don’t bite off more than within, be honest with yourself and you can chew with spending, right ask trusted people around you as well. now focus on needs not wants. Have a Ask them what they like about you and budget on what you’ll spend and what what they don’t like. Don’t take it per- you’ll save and stick to it. Ask for advice sonal, make notes of these and plan from trusted married couples on how how you’ll turn things they don’t like they manage their finances. Financial about you around. Listen to the wise maturity is key, when you get married words of Solomon and don’t be like the person that will moan and say when it’s it won’t be your needs alone to be catoo late that “...If only I had not ignored tered for, but that of two people. all the warnings!” Proverbs 5:12 (NLT). Emotional maturity is also very important. Be kind always, be a peace maker (Activity) and find every opportunity to make What are ways you could prayerfully turn peace with those that you have disweaknesses into strengths and make agreements with. Shift all your expecsure your strengths don’t turn into weak- tation on God and not man. Don’t take nesses? things personal. Is there hurt you’re harbouring that you need to heal Character from? Take your time to heal from it or You’ll also need to allow God to devel- you’ll end up hurting people around op your character. As a single person you. God allows everything to happen it’s important to focus on your charac- or a reason, if it’s someone that broke ter. When our qualifications, achieveyour heart, know that you didn’t end ments and possessions fade, character remains. Your character is how people up with the person because God has will remember you because it deter- better in store for you. There are always mines how you treat people. There is a better things ahead! famous saying: ‘you can judge a man’s Have Fun character by how he treats those who can do nothing for him.’ Another saying One thing you must do during the by John Wooden says ‘ability may get period of being single is to have fun! you to the top, but it takes character to Leave aside the worry of not having keep you there’. Let’s look at two Bibli- someone ask you on a date. Have fun! cal examples; Joseph displayed integri- Keep yourself busy with fun activities. ty by refusing to sleep with his master’s Travel the world and take your friends wife in Gen 39:9 and Ruth displayed along. Make new friends and build reloyalty to her mother in-law in Ruth lationships. Remember not every man 1:16. I believe that if they acted other- or woman you are friends with is your wise and didn’t show good character future spouse and this should not a 44

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