Being a Christian means things like giving and walking the extra mile for others. But does it mean that single Christians shouldn’t be careful about whom and how, and even if they should help others? Dr. Jim gives guidance for those searching for the “Christian” thing to do.
Dear Jim: Where is the line between helping others and being taken by others?
Most Christian single adults are very caring and giving individuals. They try to live their lives the best they can according to the Bible and the leading of His Spirit. At the same time they are also dealing with the reality of the world around them and the effect the choices of others has and continues to have upon them. This combination too often generates some events that are not always healthy ones.
Let me share one specific area that comes to mind, which is the reason for my writing this article. It is something that happens to both single men and women.
A single is attracted to another person but the other person uses them and takes advantage of their emotions and too often their finances, etc. The single Christian remembers God’s Word to be giving and walk the extra mile for others. In their love for the individual AND their own attraction to this other person, they find themselves in a repeated cycle of helping and being abandoned/hurt. They give and give over an extended period of time only to find once again that they have been taken advantage of.
While I know that God calls upon us Christians to be an example into other lives and walk the extra mile, I also know that He wants us to heed His wisdom and know when to recognize that He is not choosing us to be the one to bring them to God and His teachings. How does one discern when this is such a time?
The “USE ME” sign
Over and over again in my writings you will find me saying that everyone needs to have an accountability group. This can be friends or family, but they should be of the same gender and strong Christians. Their objectivity and input when you go through such times is an extremely valuable input.
When you find yourself in repeated patterns (of any type) that are not good for you, seek out your Pastor or good Christian counsellor. I want to say this with kindness but reveal a truth to you. It seems that sometimes in life we are wearing a sign on our back that says something like ‘use me’. WE are not aware of this sign while others can read it with ease. A counsellor can help YOU discover if there is anything within you that contributes to your being in these cycles.
IF you continue to be ‘taken’ by this other person, you may be standing in the way of God being able to work in their lives. Unfortunately for most of us, until the pain is severe enough – we will not consider making any changes. Saving them from their pain may be the worse thing you can do for them!
What does the Bible teaches us to do?
Remember that the same Bible that tells us to share our coats with others (Matthew 5:40) also tells us to flee from evil (1 Titus 6:11). God wants you to find this healthy balance.
God does not allow us to walk alone. He has provided His Spirit, His Word, and the lives of other Christians to be a great guide and resource. I suggest that He has even provided this Internet site of ministry. The message that God has placed on my heart to share with singles is that He loves you immensely and cares what you are going through. He is with you ALL the time and stands ready to carry you through all of life’s challenges.
May His joy and peace fill you and His Spirit guide you through all your troubles!