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Desperately Seeking…Responsibility

Today’s we share part four of our Desperately Seeking video Bible study series. Do you know someone like Miriam? If you went to Bible college, I’m sure you do.

Share and enjoy!

 

First Impressions

What do you think of Miriam?

What are some good things we can say about Miriam?

What red flags do you see in Miriam?

 

Introduction

Miriam sounds like a young woman with a good heart. She might even make a great pastor’s wife. But Miriam was not very wise in her college plans. She had the opportunity to get a good education, to start a career, and to gain some independence. Instead, she graduated school with a huge debt and little to show for it.

Being a stay-at-home parent is as noble a life choice as having a career, but God doesn’t want us to enter the world as helpless, dependent babes. Your single years are a time for learning how to be wise with the opportunities and the blessings you have been given. It is a time to get an education, to learn how to provide for yourself, and to learn how to manage your money.

God has given each one of us talents and opportunities. If we don’t use those gifts wisely, we have no one to blame but ourselves.

 

Read Matthew 25:14-30

How did the rich man reward the servants who invested their talents wisely?

Why did the rich man punish the one who did not invest their talents?

What do you think Jesus is really talking about in this parable?

Which of the servants do you think most matches up with Miriam, and why?

 

Application

Why is it important for us to learn to be independent, even if we plan on getting married?

How would learning to be a good money manager and learning to live on your own benefit you in married life?

What other skills do you think you need in addition to being a good money manager?

What are you doing to establish yourself as a self-sufficient person right now?

Is there anything you need help with right now so that you can stand on your own two feet?

Prayer

Dear Jesus,

Thank you for the gifts you have given us. Help us to invest those gifts and be wise stewards of all you have given us.

In Jesus’ name,
Amen

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Desperately Seeking… Obedience

Everybody knows somebody like Pete. Whether we like to admit it or not, there’s a little Pete in all of us. Obedience isn’t always easy, but it’s still expected if we want to call ourselves followers of Christ.

Share and enjoy!

First Impressions

What do you think of Pete?

What are some good things we can say about Jenny?

Is there anything that concerns you about Pete?

Introduction

Of all the characters introduced in this series of videos, no one stirred up more reaction than Pete. Pete’s faith may be genuine, and his love for God real, but Pete is holding back. As much as he wants to be a man of God, there are areas in his life – one in particular – he refuses to surrender to God.

The Bible is very clear on what is good and what is a sin, and the Bible doesn’t forbid anything without reason. Sex was created for a husband and a wife, and there are consequences – spiritual, emotional, and physical – for disobeying God’s commands for sex.

Sex isn’t the only area where Christians try to compromise with God. Sin is sin, and all sin puts a wall between us and the Lord. God wants us to obey him in everything. He wants us to keep our bodies, our hearts, and our minds pure. He wants us to set ourselves apart from the world by our obedience.

Read Daniel 1

What compromises did King Nebuchadnezzar want the Israelite men to make?

Why do you think Nebuchadnezzar insisted the Israelites eat the king’s food and drink his wine?

Why did Daniel and his friends refuse to obey the king?

How do you think the test Daniel and his friends undertook changed the way the king saw Daniel?

Application

Why do you think so many singles have compromised on sex?

Do you think it’s possible to remain pure until you are married? Why or why not?

What are some other temptations that singles struggle with?

How can obeying God make us a good witness to others?

How can we develop the strength and character we need to stay pure?

Prayer

Dear Jesus,

Forgive us for the compromises we make every day when we give into sin. Purify our hearts, and give us strength when we need it to resist temptation.

In Jesus’ name,
Amen

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Desperately Seeking… Jesus

Part two of our Desperately Seeking series is below. Watch Michael’s video, then grab your Bible (or pop open Bible Gateway in another window).

Share and enjoy.

First Impressions

What do you think of Michael?

What are some good things we can say about Michael?

Is there anything that concerns you about Michael?

Introduction

Michael has an interesting job. Seven days a week, he dresses up and pretends to be Jesus. As challenging as that may be, it’s a far cry from the challenge God wants us all to undertake on a daily basis. Michael acts like Christ in a Christian theme park, surrounded by the faithful. We are called to walk like Christ every day in a world that has rejected him.

An actor portraying a real person, on stage or screen, spends a great deal of time studying their role. They read biographies. They watch footage, if footage exists. They look at photographs. They study their subject from every angle to be the best imitation they can be.

Following Christ means we must get to know Jesus. We must study him from every angle. We must learn to see the world as he does and act the way he did.

Read Philippians 2:1-11

How does Paul describe Jesus?

What are some of the distinguishing characteristics of Jesus?

How did Jesus view other people? Whom did he value? Whom did he seek out?

Why did Jesus sacrifice so much?

Application

Do you think we as Christians spend enough time going into the world to live like Christ?

What are some of the biggest obstacles to living like Jesus in the “real” world?

What are some things we can do to live more like Christ at work? At school? In our neighborhoods?

What sacrifices can we make to show others that Jesus loves them?

Is there something we can do as a group to serve others?

Prayer

Dear Jesus,

Thank you for Jesus and all the sacrifices he made for us. Teach us to be imitators of Christ so that the love of Jesus will shine in our lives.

In Jesus’ name,
Amen

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Desperately Seeking… What You Need the Most

Desperately Seeking… is a “videvo” series written for single Christians. Long story short, this series was created in response to my discovery that the only websites the Internet had to offer single Christians were dating services. Every Wednesday, for the next six weeks, we will release one of these Bible studies for free. We hope to build an audience of singles and young adults whom we can inspire to go deeper in their Christian walk.

You are not alone, and whatever you current “status” may be, you are not incomplete without a spouse. Not if you have Jesus.

Here’s Desperately Seeking part one, featuring Kristen. Share and enjoy!

First Impressions

What do you think of Kristen?

What are some good things we can say about Kristen?

What “issues” do you think Kristen has?

Introduction

Kristen is probably a great person, but Kristen is a victim of a system that says if you’re not in a relationship, your life is incomplete. The culture we live in constantly bombards us with messages like this. We hear it in pop music, we see it on TV and in movies, we read about it online, and we hear about it from the people around us.

You would think the church of all places would be a refuge, but often times it is not. Churches are filled with well-meaning, usually married people who have forgotten (or never knew) what a blessing the single life can be. Singleness is a gift. It’s a time of growth, and it’s a time of freedom. Singles have all the time married people can only dream of to learn, to draw closer to God, and to serve others.

Read 1 Corinthians 7

What sort of obligations do married people have that single people do not?

How can these obligations be a hindrance to a person’s spiritual growth?

What advice does Paul give to single people?

What spiritual advantage is there to being single vs. being married?

Application

Based on the scripture we’ve read, what advice would you give to Kristen?

How can we shift our focus from worrying about dating and relationships to growing our faith in God?

How can we devote our single days to serving the Lord?

Have fun with this one: What sort of answers can we give to those well-meaning but misguided believers who think life isn’t complete until we are married?

Prayer

Dear Jesus,

Thank you for the single life you have given us. Help us to remember this time is a blessing so we will not waste it on ourselves. Teach us to love and serve others and give you our best.

In Jesus’ name,
Amen

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A Manifesto on Singles Ministry

Ok so here’s the story.

11 years ago when I got engaged for the 3rd time and realized I was finally going to get married, I felt a need to create something for singles, something to leave behind as a legacy to help other singles grow in their faith and not waste their single years pining for love. The Bible makes it very clear single years are not to be wasted and as much as I did in those 13 years, I knew I wasted a lot of energy chasing the wrong things.

At the time I already had 3 websites going and wasn’t sure I wanted to start another. I gave it to God in this way. I said okay, I will search the web. If I find one, just one website that is devoted to helping singles grow in their faith and not just a dating service, I’ll let it go.

I found nothing. Not a darn thing. Every Christian portal with a singles link sent you to a dating site. There was nothing – NOT ONE WEBSITE – to help singles grow their faith. Only dating services.

Now I was furious. I had flashbacks to my college days when no one at church could give me a good answer as to why we didn’t have a program for singles. We had a thriving youth ministry drawing hundreds of kids a week. When you graduated from high school, they shook your hand, said congratulations, and that was it.

Around my junior year of college, they announced they were hiring a singles pastor. I was so excited, I inquired about applying for myself. One of the staff members laughed at me and pulled me aside.

“John, we’re not hiring a college minister. We’re hiring someone for the ‘single again’ crowd. The middle-aged singles.”

“Are they going to do anything for college students?” I asked.

The answer was just one word. “No.”

Couldn’t make it up if I wanted to.

Someone else at the church clued me in on why college/young adults was not a priority. The general attitude among the church leaders was that college kids and young adults were expected to go away, get their education, and come back when they had families. They didn’t care what they did in those intervening years. They were just expected to come back later when they had kids – and income they could give back to the church.

Back to my original story. When I did that exhaustive search of the Internet and found nothing but Christian-branded meat markets, my response was to create a parody dating site called getyoked.net. Getyoked featured fake video personals parodying Christian singles and the people who made their lives miserable. We also added videos from a pair of “experts” who also chided singles for not being married and fruitful. It was a blast to create, but it never really took off. I kept it afloat for 8 years before pulling the plug. and I repackaged the best videos into a video Bible study called Desperately Seeking which is posted free on the RI website.

Over the next six weeks, I will be posting these videos here on the blog, complete with the Bible studies written to support them. Beyond that I will be posting more video Bible studies – or “Videvos” – created with a young adult/college/singles audience in mind. Many of these are films already available from RI, including Fluffy and Clive the Zombie, but I have put together a team of friends, former students, and collaborators to ultimately create new content for singles and young adults.

My hope is that in the coming year, we can build a portal here on Righteous Insanity where singles and college kids can find some support for their Christian walk. We also hope that the very few pastors and volunteers out there working with singles can find some resources to use in their ministry.

It is a SHAME that the church spends so much time in kids, teens, and parents while turning a blind eye to young adults. It’s a gamble the church has won more often than not in the past but is losing today. Let’s change that. Let’s make a difference you young people at a time in life when they really need it. Let’s stop shaming them for being single, pushing them into marriage before they are ready, and help them focus on the relationship they need the most – Jesus!