Girls Night In

the blog for single, over-40 women

Mostly Random Thoughts on My Single Life

Author Photo

Photo by Susie Jarvis/Waterkopf.

Let me start by being completely honest: I went trick or treating with my nieces and nephew and their friends tonight and enjoyed some of the fruit—and by “fruit” I mean “candy”—of their labor. So I’m still coming down from a bit of a sugar rush. As a result, I’m having a little trouble staying focused.

Seems as good a time as any to write an article I’ve been mulling over for a few weeks—random thoughts on the single life. Feel free to add your own at the end.

  1. For the most part, I’ve made my peace with living alone. But there are still times when it scares the Skittles out of me.
  2. My life would be easier if I were more organized.
  3. While most women my age are looking forward to menopause, I am intensely aware of the fact that it will mean the death of the children I will never have.
  4. My life would be so much easier if I was good with money.
  5. Every once in a while I realize I’m talking with someone who equates singleness with immaturity. That drives me crazy.
  6. My life would be immensely easier if I had a regular job.
  7. I’m intensely grateful for my wooden backscratchers. Seriously, they have kept me sane many times.
  8. My life would be infinitely easier if I had someone to help shoulder the load.
  9. I live alone and, for the most part, work at home, which means my “job” outfits consist mostly of fleece and flannel and fuzzy slippers. Yet I’m still compelled to make everything match down to my socks. Is that weird?
  10. It’s been years since I had a GWP (Guy With Potential) in my life. I really miss that maybe-I’ll-see-him-tonight excitement.
  11. On the other hand, I sometimes feel I’m close to being in the better-off-single stage.
  12. All of which makes me wonder how I can be content and heartbroken in my singleness at the same time.
  13. Any difficulties I’m having now—especially health-wise—will only get worse as I age. And I’m not ready for that.
  14. This is not the life I would have chosen for myself, but I am blessed to have it.

So … what are your random thoughts on singleness?

 

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Stressed? Just Breathe

Our fellow contributor, Tammy, posted last week about added stress at work. Her promotion and new responsibilities are exciting, but wearying. 

The transitions happening in my life require me to make decisions that stress me out on a daily basis. With every development on the way to my Big Move I’m thrown into a sea of anxiety, where I wonder what the Lord is saying, or doing, or requiring of me.

The holiday season is nigh upon us. External logistics-related stress and internal emotional-baggage stress are as much a part of the season as soul-warming food and shimmering decorations. This holiday stressfulness can be particularly hard for older singles, who are often reminded at these times of the ways their love and family lives differ from the lives they planned.

In the midst of my recent stress, a new friend prayed for me. He reminded me that all God needed from me in this season was for me to Be. All God required of me and desired of me, was that I draw close to Him and rest there, just as I am, without striving to be something other than who I am at this very moment. 

Father Gregory Boyle, wrote Tattoos on the Heart, easily one of the best and most poignant books I’ve ever read. He has long been a priest in an impoverished, gang-controlled, Hispanic community in Los Angeles. God works through him to create life out of death, and beauty out of ashes. 

Boyle was interviewed recently and said that to get to clarity amidst the hustle and bustle of his life, he keeps three words in mind: this here now. This. Here. Now. This person, conversation, or task, right here, right now, is what matters. 

I think of this like being attentive to each breath that we take.

This. (Breathe)

Here. (Breathe)

Now. (Breathe)

God Is. And God’s Spirit is breath, breathing into us. 

 Our greatest work this season will be the work of being present. Of breathing, resting, and relating moment by moment.

May our every breath and our real presence create holy days among our holidays. 

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He Didn’t Have To

Anyone who knows me knows this is my favorite time of year. I love almost everything about it. The scent of pumpkin spice and burning leaves, the cooler days and crisp nights, the promise that Christmas is so close I can almost taste the cranberries.

Autumn Leaves

Image courtesy of Aduldej/ FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Then there are the trees—a cozy blanket in shades of red and yellow and green that warms the earth and my heart. I regularly drive by a tree-lined street not far from my house where the leaves stretch across the road like a two-block gazebo. Yesterday it had reached its peak of autumn color and I almost drove off the road staring at it.

And I thought, “He didn’t have to.” It’s just one of many wonderful things God did while creating the world that brings us pleasure … and He didn’t have to.

He gave us seasons—each one so different and all with something to love. With those seasons, we have the circle of life. In the fall, as the colder temps kill the plants in preparation for winter, He could have given us leaves that simply turned brown and fell off. But He didn’t.

He could have made food that was only sustenance for our survival, not something to be enjoyed. But He gave us taste buds and chocolate and fall-off-the-bone barbecue ribs.

He bestowed each of us with our own unique sense of humor and the laughter that goes with it—gifts to share with those we love. He created kissing. We don’t need it but … wow. In the same vein, He could have made sex utilitarian for the procreation of children. But He didn’t.

So many things that could have been different. Boring. Plain. And if He’d made it that way, we wouldn’t now know the beauty of a sunset over a field of oaks and aspens and maples in mid-October.

The epiphany I had about this last night occurred as I was listening to a worship song that fit the moment perfectly. It all combined to remind me of God’s deep, unfailing love for me. I’ve been going through a rougher-than-usual time lately, and that reminder was just what I needed.

He loves us unconditionally. He didn’t have to.

But He did.

 

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Leaving Things Behind

image courtesy of nonicknamephoto/freedigitalphotos.net

image courtesy of nonicknamephoto/freedigitalphotos.net

When I moved after I finished school the first time, I put my not-often-needed stuff in my mom’s basement. She reminds me occasionally that a lot of it is still there.

After 9/11, I moved from my perfect little Brooklyn apartment back home. I stored my things in my sister’s garage. The garage leaked and ruined some of it, and a raccoon made a home among some other stuff. It was all lost to me. I remembered that before I’d packed, a friend said she would be starting over and needed to replace everything. I told her she could have all my stuff because I was moving home and would not be using it. We never managed to connect somehow. I’d thought at the time that not giving my stuff away was probably for the best because I would surely be making use of it all again very soon. In the end, what could have been a great blessing to her, ended up being of no use to anyone. I still live with regret over this.

When I moved again–temporarily in with Grandma–I put my not-often-needed stuff in storage. Just until I closed on my house in a month, I thought. Alas, the house didn’t close. A year later I faced the fact that I was going to be at Grandma’s for a while, that storage was costing me a fortune, and that I could store everything in Grandma’s attached garage for free. So I did. And it continues to sit in Grandma’s garage to this day. Every now and then I’ll go over, rummage through my things and find something I love, but really do not need.

It’s time for me to move again. This time to another country. The apartment I share with a roommate contains mostly her things. I have a bedroom set and some bookshelves; clothes and books and bedding and linens; tools, lamps, a few utensils, and dishes for two; a desk with a computer; more books.

Leaving my Brooklyn apartment and returning home required me to downsize my life. Moving into Grandma’s meant more downsizing. Leaving Grandma’s to head back to school and having only a small bedroom to call my own in shared housing arrangements necessitated a radical elimination of stuff. Yet as I look around my room, I still have more stuff than I remember accumulating, and more stuff than I need.

What I know now is that a move means a life change. It means going to a new place physically, psychologically, emotionally–even financially. As I prepare to move this time, I am beginning by settling my heart, my mind and my spirit. I’m working on the internal movements that need to take place along with the physical ones.

This time, I do not want to hold onto old stuff. This time, I only want to carry with me what I will need for the next leg of my journey. The things that belong to this place I am moving from, I am letting go. If I get to the new place and need what I no longer have, then I look forward to being surprised and delighted by how the Lord will meet my needs.

What has moving meant for you, physically and emotionally?

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Seasons

DSC_0004The leaves on the tree in front of my house are turning yellow. They dry up and float down on the winds of the changing seasons. I love the changing of summer into fall. It’s one of my favorite times of year.

This year the fall brings with it other changes. A few months ago, I received a promotion at work. It has been a great thing. Just another sign of life marching on, never static and never boring.

Life has been crazy busy with these changes. For the last few months, I’ve been deep in learning Key Performance Indicators and how to help my people meet theirs. I’ve had to get up to speed on what’s expected in the weekly leadership meetings. Navigating the time clock system so that people are paid has been a learning curve. An important one because, you know, people like to be paid.

At the end of the day, I go home tired. It’s not as if I’m running marathons. I sit behind a desk. I go to meetings. I analyze trends. But it’s all new and it’s challenging me. When I drop into bed at night, I feel exhausted but in a good way. I love my new job.

It haDSC_0010s interfered with my day-to-day life. I’ve had to rearrange my world and am still trying to get into a groove. So, I haven’t been writing as much as I’d like, and I haven’t been here on Girls Night In for several weeks.

Sharyn and I talked a few weeks ago. I let her know I’d been struggling and we decided that I’d post here as I could for the next few months. I’m trying to get here at least once a month. So, I’m still here, just not as often.

 

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The Great Marriage Eligibility Test

Test

Image courtesy of Ambro/ FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Yesterday was my birthday, so today I thought I’d share a favorite article I wrote way back when we first started this blog in 2013. Have a great Friday, friends!

***

You know how they say a man will come along as soon as you stop looking and you think, “Well, I guess no man will ever come along because I’ll never stop looking,” but then, one day, you discuss with some friends how you don’t know what the next year will bring and one says, “Yeah, you might be married by then” and, for the first time in your life, you think that might not be what you want anymore and you freak out, just a little, since you’re no longer sure you want to get married because of the direction God’s leading your ministry, and piggy-backing on that thought is this:

“Wait, so if I’m no longer certain I want to get married does that mean I’m finally not looking so now God will bring me a man?”

Then you think, “I guess I’m still looking after all.”

So you sigh and shrug and figure you failed once again. After all, God will bring you a man when you stop looking. That’s what everyone says, right?

They also say your singleness implies you still need to work on your relationship with God. Or you need to lose weight. Or get out of debt. Or ________________ (fill in the blank).

Bottom line: You’re a mess. And who wants to marry a mess?

All of which sets up this underlying idea that we’re single because we haven’t figured out The Secret yet. We still haven’t passed The Great Marriage Eligibility Test. And every five minutes or so you meet some cute, young thing who’s married but definitely does not have her act together and you think, “She passed the test?! How did she pass but I didn’t?”

Well, I’m going to say something you might not like, but hang in there with me: It IS a test. But not a test to see if you’re ready for marriage or not. It’s a test to see if you will trust God, whatever happens.

Here’s the good news: This kind of testing is part of the whole faith experience. Paul even encouraged us in how to handle it:

So we do not lose heart. Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day. For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison, as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal.
                                                                         ~ 2 Corinthians 4:16-18

Not everyone is strong enough to handle such a test, but God knew you could. I’m not saying this is the only reason you’re single. I am saying, though, that the next time someone tells you you’re single because you haven’t stopped looking or your relationship with God needs work or they throw some new and improved test question at you, just smile serenely and tell them:

“That’s not the test I’m working on.”

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Meeting the New Guy

New Guy by imagerymajestic

Image courtesy of imagerymajestic/freedigitalphotos.net.

Don’t you love it when a new GWP (Guy With Potential) enters your social circle? It’s been a while for me, but I certainly remember what it feels like. That twinge of attraction when your eyes meet, the beat of hope the first time he makes you laugh, and all those little moments that whisper, Maybe … just maybe. . . .

I suppose those are just a few of the reasons this is one of my favorite scenes in Spinstered the Novel. Here, Uli meets the latest GWP to show up at her church. Enjoy!

***

Sunday morning dawns crisp and clear. It’s late September, and the aspens outside my bedroom window twinkle gold in the early sunlight. Hope filters through me. It’s like what Anne of Green Gables said: “Isn’t it nice to think that tomorrow is a new day with no mistakes in it yet?” I’m ready for something wonderful to happen.

I’m so ready.

Squeezing into my black jeans, I choose not to stress about the thirty pounds I need to lose. Maybe today I’ll take a walk instead of opening a bag of Hershey’s Kisses. The dark chocolate ones. Stop it, Uli. It’s a new day, and anything is possible. I pull eight sweaters and five shirts out of the closet and try them all on before finally knocking on Jolene’s bedroom door and getting her opinion on my final three options.

“This one, definitely,” she says, pointing to a white cardigan covered in big black and gray flowers. It’s lightweight, which is good because fall afternoons in Colorado can still simmer on the warm side. I wear a simple, white tank underneath and wrap a red scarf around my neck for color.

After spending thirty minutes trying to get my hair to do something even remotely cute, I finally pull it back with some black clips, leaving a few curly tendrils free to frame my face. Dangling, silver earrings; strappy, black sandals; a hint of Charlie Red, and I’m ready to go. Since Jolene has been yelling at me to hurry up for the last ten minutes, I grab my purse and chase her out to the car. She streaks ahead of me like a ray of sunshine in her bright, happy outfit. Or like a big, yellow chicken. Brian will definitely notice her. And I’ll make a nice, neutral backdrop.

I have a tough time paying attention to the service. It’s hard to listen to a sermon about the power of grace when you’re craning your neck for a glimpse of the new guy. Especially when you’re trying to look without looking like you’re looking.

Jolene elbows me and whispers, “Can’t you wait another thirty minutes?”

“No.” I grin at her and glance behind me … right into the clear, silver-fox eyes of Brian Kemper. Wow, he actually has an up-to-date Facebook photo, except his dark hair is shorter and there’s some gray at the temples. His eyes are a little close together, and he has a rather large, hooked nose, but it works for him. Especially when he smiles, which he does, and I realize I’m staring. Then he nods at me. One of those polite, “what’s up” nods. Like we work in the same building and, every once in a while, have to wait for the elevator together. What a disappointingly unromantic meeting! I can’t tell our kids that. “Our eyes met across a crowded room … and he nodded at me.” Blah.

I want a do-over.

Though it’s too late now, I look away, feeling the heat crawl up my face. Well, that’s that. Then I make the mistake of glancing at Jolene. She has a serene, perfect, speak-to-me-Lord expression on her face. Good grief, the woman knows exactly where Brian Kemper is sitting. She’s probably known since we walked into the sanctuary.

Jolene: one; Uli: zero.

Catie, however, seems completely oblivious. She’s sitting on the other side of Jolene, scribbling notes faster than Pastor Owens can get the words out. I shouldn’t say “scribbling” because her writing is neat, bulleted, and laid out in columns. It looks like an Excel spreadsheet. But her short, cropped, red-gold hair frames her perky but somewhat plain face just right and, though I’m not fond of business suits personally, her striking blue one makes her seem taller and, somehow, adds a few curves.

“What did he just say?” Tess, to my right, leans closer. Well, he didn’t say anything, he’s— Oh, wait. The sermon. She means the pastor, not Brian. Right. I shrug my shoulders. “Sorry. I missed it too.” She gives me a crooked, behave-yourself smile. Boy, do I wish my friends couldn’t read me like a book. Not all the time, anyway.

So, I turn my attention completely to the pastor until the last amen is uttered. We stand for the closing song, and as the final strains of “Your Grace Is Enough” echo through the sanctuary, the music morphs into the chatter of several hundred voices.

I do not fight my way through the crowd or hurry to our class meeting room but wander around, greeting acquaintances and chatting with whomever I happen to run into. On occasion, I catch a glimpse of Brian. He’s surrounded by people. What could he have done to be such a favorite already? He’s definitely an extrovert. And he’s cute in an older-guy-with-laugh-lines-and-no-sense-of-style kind of way. The group around him seems completely captivated. They laugh at almost anything he says. Hope simmers through me like that first sip of hot chocolate.

Please, God. Please let something happen.

Eventually, I make my way to the classroom where our group leader, Scott, greets everyone with a Squiggy-like “hello” and hands out his weekly list of discussion questions. Thirty-one-year-old Scott Jones works at Home Depot and treats every girl like a sister. Which would be fine if he didn’t see himself as the annoying little brother who pulls your hair and drops ice cubes down the back of your shirt. Okay, he’s not that bad, but I’m pretty sure the thought has crossed his mind. To his credit, though, he does an adequate job keeping our small group on track.

I set my Bible and notebook on a chair before turning to dash back through the door, heading to the restroom for one last, quick check in the mirror. But I take the corner too fast and run smack-dab into Mr. GWP himself. I don’t just run into him; I practically bowl him over, stumbling like a drunken sailor, knocking a cup of coffee out of his hands and to the floor, where it splatters all over our shoes. Strong fingers grab my arms, helping me get my balance. With a deep breath, I look up into gray eyes that flicker startled, then amused.

“Steady there,” he says.

I laugh. What else can I do? This meet-cute might be more interesting than a nod but only if it leads to something. If he never asks me out, it will forever be merely an embarrassing memory. So, of course, my imagination jumps to a happier outcome. One where I tell our kids about how I ran into their father … literally.

Once I’m no longer tilting, he drops his hands away. “Are you all right?”

“Yes, I’m fine.” I pick up the now empty Styrofoam cup and hand it to him. “How about you?”

He smiles. “I’ve survived worse. So,” he says, looking around, “are you running to something or away from it?”

To something. Definitely. But I say, “The restroom,” like a ditz. I’m always so much more clever in my mind.

We gaze into each other’s eyes for a suspended-in-air moment. Then he says, “Where can I get something to clean this up?”

“What?”

“The coffee.”

Shake it off. “Right. Of course. I’ll take care of it. You go on. I’ll be there in a minute.”

“Where’s that?”

“Oh, um …” Good grief, Uli. You sound like a stalker. “Hello, stranger. I know we only met a minute ago, but I know exactly where you’re going.” Out loud I say,

“I meant … aren’t you …” I point pathetically toward the door I just lurched through.

He looks past me. “Is that where the single professional class meets?”

I nod and am, I’m sure, about to say something completely not brilliant, when Jolene sashays out into the hall.

“Well, hello there!” She flicks her head my direction and flashes a smile that actually outshines her dress. “Uli, are you gonna introduce me to your friend?”

Jolene: two.

Once again I stammer out something nonsensical as Brian steps forward, hand outstretched.

“Hi, I’m Brian. Your friend—Uli?—and I just … ran into each other.” He grins back at me and suddenly hope springs up again like a jack-in-the-box, shocking me with its sudden reappearance. Two minutes after meeting and the new guy and I already have a past, a history, an inside joke.

Uli: one.

My friend and roommate takes his hand. “Jolene. Nice to meet you.” Then, instead of letting go, she practically pulls him into the classroom. “Let me introduce you to the rest of the crew.”

I look down at the puddle of coffee soaking into the carpet, tempted to just leave it. It’s old carpet, anyway. That would be wrong, though, so I hurry to get some paper towels from the kitchen.

It would be unwise to leave Brian in Jolene’s grasp too long. If all’s fair in love and war, then I need to prepare for battle. My roommate, after all, is a seasoned campaigner.

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Commitment Phobia

image courtesy of bplanet/freedigitalphotos.net

image courtesy of bplanet/freedigitalphotos.net

I’m moving back to Cape Town, South Africa. In three months.

There, I’ve said it.

But I have yet to buy my plane ticket, even though the price is at an epic low. I have been studying the airfares for about a month–since September. When I had four months until I was set to leave.

Why have I not made this purchase?

Am I afraid? Being a person who is afraid of everything, the answer to that question is obvious. Of course I am afraid. But that does not explain my ticket-less state. The real question is, “Why?” Why am I afraid of a plane ticket?

What I have concluded is that buying that plane ticket represents commitment. It is commitment to a new life that is 8,000 miles away from the old, that is financially insecure, that is culturally challenging in profound and disturbing ways. None of this is the scary part, though.

What scares me is that in addition to all the known perils, I am committing to a great unknown void of “What if…?”

The scary part is committing to the ways that God is at work in my life. Ways which I know are always good, but which are not always pleasant.

Most scary of all is committing to the part about love. I am still hoping, still waiting, still expecting. It feels like all the energy and desire I have to love and to be loved in return is aimed in the direction of Cape Town. Yet all the while, for the sake of the watching world, I have to not make the love thing the main thing. I have to remember the love thing is incidental to all the other “important” things. For my own sake, I have to be in a letting go frame of mind so that if love does not finally come around for me, all continues to be well with my soul.

Buying the plane ticket means committing to my fondest hopes and to totally releasing my hope all at the same time.

A long time ago three Hebrew boys who were moved to a foreign country boldly declared, “Our God can deliver us and will deliver us! But even if God does not deliver us, we will not bow down.” Then they willingly went forward into death.

My prayer is to be able to say the same thing. “My God can and will lead me into love. But even if God does not, I am still standing tall.” And, as I am whispering these words to myself, to also be hitting the button on my laptop to buy my plane ticket.

What has happened for you when you’ve prayed this kind of prayer?

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Love Comes Around

image by StuartMiles/freedigitalphotos.net

image by StuartMiles/freedigitalphotos.net

This has been an eventful week in the lives of my friends.

One friend, a 40-something who started dating very late in life, has been seeing her guy for two years. This week they sent out the Save the Dates. She met him at church. He is older, a young Christian, physically not “her type,” and generally not anything like what she thought she might be looking for. But he gives her the kind of good love for which we have spent years praying.

Another friend, who is closing in on 40, has been dating her guy for a month.  After a very sweet and thoughtful thing he did, she realized she has found the man who may be the man she will spend the rest of her life with here on earth.  Bonus–he feels the same. She met him on Tinder (which, it turns out, is not just for hookups), after a series of dates with other people that were duds. He’s a couple of years older than she is, has never been married and has no children. He’s not single because he’s got a ton of issues, but rather because he took extended time to not date while he worked on his issues. My friend had no idea such a man existed.

A different friend in her late-40s came to the realization that the guy she has been seeing–who does things like drive down from Richmond to Durham on the weekends and sleep at her friends’ home to safeguard her reputation–is a keeper. She is afraid of the finality of marriage but wants to love him more than she wants to remain in her zone of safety. After much patience on his part, she is letting him know she is ready to commit. They met on Christian Mingle and have been together for three years. In age, temperament and education, he is totally different than the man she imagined God might have for her.

My roommate, who is in her early 30s, has never been on an official date. Naturally, I have been her biggest encourager to break that habit sooner rather than later. She’s been feeling confident and beautiful lately and this week decided to join an online dating site for the first time ever–which she previously swore was not for her. Within one day she had made contact with a suitable man who immediately locked in a date with her five days in the future. I assured her it was very rare indeed for an online suitor to be that direct and intentional about getting together. In a matter of hours now, she will have crossed the dating line and begun life’s great adventure–the search for a healthy loving relationship with another.

Being a woman who loves love, I am elated by all the love blossoming around me. It encourages me to live with expectancy. Love is there to be found in many different places, on many different websites and in many different guises. Oh, for the openness, courage and resilience to continue to look for it.

What love stories have encouraged you most recently?

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Fighting Amongst Myself

Fighting by photostock

Image courtesy of photostock/freedigitalphotos.net.

Maybe my double-mindedness shouldn’t surprise me. James said a double-minded man is unstable (1:8) and, of course, there’s Paul’s frustrated discourse about the whole thing in Romans. If one of the founders of our faith struggled with it, why shouldn’t I?

I am of two minds—one is the-me-I-want-to-be and the other is the-me-in-the-moment. It’s why I consistently fail at losing weight. It doesn’t matter that I don’t like what I see in the mirror or in a photo or how out of breath I am after climbing a flight of stairs, the moment I crave a gummy peach ring or decide fried chicken sounds good for dinner, it’s over. The-me-in-the-moment doesn’t care.

Perhaps it’s a problem with long-term goals. I think about what is instead of what could be. I often say, “Do this for the you in five months—the you who’ll be glad you turned down that donut and only had one slice of pizza and exercised regularly. Do it for her.”

So … do I?

No, I do not.

Double-minded. Unstable. Doing what I hate. I’d think there was something seriously wrong with me if not for dear Apostle Paul*:

For what I am doing, I do not understand. For what I will to do, that I do not practice; but what I hate, that I do. If, then, I do what I will not to do, I agree with the law that it is good. But now, it is no longer I who do it, but sin that dwells in me. For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh) nothing good dwells; for to will is present with me, but how to perform what is good I do not find. For the good that I will to do, I do not do; but the evil I will not to do, that I practice. Now if I do what I will not to do, it is no longer I who do it, but sin that dwells in me.

I find then a law, that evil is present with me, the one who wills to do good. For I delight in the law of God according to the inward man. But I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members.

 O wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death?

I know exactly how he feels. I know how quickly you can get to that point where you want to tear out your hair in frustration. But here’s the truth of the matter: We all fail. We all let God down.

But, hallelujah, that isn’t the end of the story. Paul adds: “I thank God—through Jesus Christ our Lord! So then, with the mind I myself serve the law of God, but with the flesh the law of sin.”

Once again we see that God rescues us, this time from ourselves. Yet we are still trapped by our sinful flesh. We don’t give up, though, because, by God’s grace, Paul then comes to a grand conclusion as he continues in chapter eight:

There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit. For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has made me free from the law of sin and death.

In other words, on our own we are completely helpless. Of course we fail because the-me-in-the-moment is the-me-in-the-flesh. Only by truly accepting that Jesus has set me free can I actually be free.

Have you been set free from the law of sin and death?

*Romans 7:15 – 8:2

 

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