Terrace Crawford‘s posted this the day prior to Valentine’s Day three years ago. We have a lot of deeper topics here so I thought we’d start out with something light. If you don’t recognize some of the the situations listed below, you can always look up the story.
- Find an attractive prisoner of war, bring her home, shave her head, trim her nails and give her new clothes. Then she’s yours. (Deuteronomy 21:11-13)
- Find a prostitute and marry her. (Hosea 1:1-3)
- Find a man with seven daughters, and impress him by watering his flock. (Moses – Exodus 2:16-21)
- Purchase a piece of property, and get a woman as part of the deal. (Boaz-Ruth 4:5-10)
- Agree to work seven years in exchange for a woman’s hand in marriage. Get tricked into marrying the wrong woman. Then work another seven years for the woman you wanted to marry in the first place. That’s right. Fourteen years of toil for a wife. (Jacob–Genesis 29:15-30)
- Cut 200 foreskins off of your future father-in-law’s enemies and get his daughter for a wife. (David–1 Samuel 18:27)
- Even if no one is out there, just wander around a bit and definitely find someone. (It’s all relative, of course.) (Cain–Genesis4:16-17)
- Become the emperor of a huge nation and hold a beauty contest. (Xerxes or Ahasuerus–Esther 2:3-4)
- When you see someone you like, go home and tell your parents, “I have seen a … woman; now get her for me.” If your parents question your decision,simply say, “Get her for me. She’s the one for me.” (Samson–Judges 14:1-3)
- Kill any husband and take HIS wife (Prepare to lose four sons, though).(David–2 Samuel 11)
- Wait for your brother to die. Take his widow. (It’s not just a good idea;it’s the law.) (Onana and Boaz–Deuteronomy or Leviticus, example in Ruth)
- Don’t be so picky. Make up for quality with quantity. (Solomon–1 Kings11:1-3)
- A wife?…NOT? (Paul–1 Corinthians 7:32-35)
As strange as many of these stories are, there are people who view the unique ways that God works in various in situations as prescriptive for everyone. That’s not how it works. God’s calling and outworking of His plan is special for each one of us, and because of God’s infinite infiniteness, he is able to nudge you in ways that will form your singular life journey.
This applies to us both individually and corporately as the local church.
Sometimes churches try to create formulas following a particular Bible example or copying what God did in another congregation. But the Bible knows no such carbon copy approach. In the gospels, Jesus Himself heals two blind men in very different ways, and in His overall dealings with people, He deals with some gently and some harshly.
Hearing God’s voice for your life is going to involve listening to His Word and listening to His Spirit, not looking at what everybody else is doing.
As the stores in the mall are filled with pink hearts, whether you are single or married or separated or widowed, let the decorations remind you of God’s love for you, and the unique things he wants to do in your life.