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“The Second Obstacle to an Eternal Agenda: My Emotional Condition”
1 Corinthians 7:30a
...those who mourn, as if they did not; those who are happy, as if they were not...
Thoughts for Today:
[Previously, Paul gave us the first of four obstacles which prevent us from fully committing to an eternal agenda. Today we will take a look at the second: "My Emotional Condition".]
There is a harmful contagion lurking in our society. It has epidemic proportions and the potential to infect every one of us. It's called the "I Disease". You know the symptoms -- people who are consumed and solely focused upon themselves. Their emotional condition defines their existence. They always analyze and ask, "Why am I depressed? Why am I discouraged? What makes me happy?" Unfortunately, the more questions they ask about themselves the more severe the condition becomes.
Paul's inoculation and cure for this disease is very simple. In fact, he wrote about it in Romans 12:15: "Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn." In other words, rather than worry about you, get involved with how others are doing. When we stop paying so much attention to our own emotional condition, something amazing happens. The Lord uses us to help others. The ultimate result is: We are set free from the "I Disease".
In our passage today, it is important to understand that Paul is not saying we shouldn't enjoy our lives or mourn our losses. Instead we need to view everything from an eternal perspective. By doing so, we avoid an over-investment in the good or the bad. We stop thinking so much about ourselves, and we find what we're seeking -- greater overall happiness and contentment.
Questions to Ponder:
Are you happy or sad today? Why? If you were tempted to answer that question, be careful. As we become preoccupied with our own problems or emotional condition, we lose our heavenly perspective. It's a result of the "I Disease". What has been distracting you lately? How can you place it in God's hands, and leave it there? What is your will versus His? Will you submit to His timing?
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About the author
Pocket Devotions are written by Mike Brooks. A retired businessman, he is Moderator of South Shores church, leads the Deacon Board, serves on the finance committee, and he teaches a Men's Bible study and the Men's Ministry. Mike has a passion for evangelical missions. He is the husband of Sherry; the father of Ryan, Natalie, Krissy, Rebecca, and Amanda; the father-in-law of Ariel; and the grandfather of Conner and Christian.